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Fully automated patching for Chrome Remote Desktop on Ubuntu Budgie.

Chrome remote desktop is fantastic, but often clashes with Xorg nuances from a variety of desktop environments in Ubuntu. This chrome-remote-desktop script extends and replaces the version automatically installed by Google in /opt/google/chrome-remote-desktop/chrome-remote-desktop. This stuff is only relevant for accessing your Ubuntu machine from elsewhere (e.g. the "server", the client machine should not be installing anything, all it needs is a web browser).

Set up the server:

Before patching anything or pursuing other forms of delightful tomfoolery, follow the installation instructions provided by Google. Set up everything normally- install Google's .deb download with dpkg, set up a PIN, etc. The trouble comes when you are trying to remote in- some problems you may encounter include:

  • none of the X sessions work, each immediately closing the connection to the client
  • the remote desktop environment crashes or becomes mangled
  • odd scaling issues or flaky resolution changes

How to install Chrome Remote Desktop remotely:

sudo apt-get install xvfb xbase-clients
wget https://dl.google.com/linux/direct/chrome-remote-desktop_current_amd64.deb
sudo dpkg -i chrome-remote-desktop_current_amd64.deb

Patch it up:

# get this script:
git clone https://github.com/Jesssullivan/chrome-remote-desktop-budgie/  && cd chrome-remote-desktop-budgie

# launch, permiss:
python3 chrome-remote-desktop
sudo chmod +s /opt/google/chrome-remote-desktop/user-session

# add the service file to start the daemon on boot:
sudo chmod u+x addsystemd.sh && sudo ./addsystemd.sh

# or, if you'd prefer to launch the daemon manually:
sudo --user=$USER /usr/bin/python3 /usr/local/bin/chrome-remote-desktop

If the Google Chrome browser has been installed on the remote machine too, be aware our fiddling will cause the remote machine's access page to erroneously report A problem was detected with the Chrome Remote Desktop installation on this computer. This can be ignored.


What does this do?

We are really just enforcing the use of existing instances of X and correct display values as reported by your system.

  • This version keeps a persistent version itself in /usr/local/bin/ in addition updating the one executed by Chrome in /opt/google/chrome-remote-desktop/.
  • A mirror of this script is also maintained at /usr/local/bin/chrome-remote-desktop.github, and will let the user know if there are updates.
  • The version distributed by google is retained in /opt/ too as chrome-remote-desktop.verbatim.
  • Each of these versions are compared by md5 hash- this way our patched version of chrome-remote-desktop will always make sure it is where it should be, even after Google pushes updates and overwrites everything in /opt/.

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Fully automated patching for Chrome Remote Desktop on Ubuntu Budgie & GNOME-based desktop environments

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