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PcAnywhere ports and/or Windows Firewall Exceptions

Created: 14 Nov 2008 • Updated: 21 May 2010 | 4 comments
jbs's picture

This is my fault - hoping to get a quick fix.  Using PcAnywhere with Gateway on a server and connecting (remotely) to a Windows XP Professional computer.  I recently tried a Microsoft scanner at their site  It gave the computer a clean bill of health but noted that a port was open.  I asked it to close this port without thinking that this was the port that I was using.  Now I cannot connect to this computer but can connect to three other computers.


Tried so far; Windows Firewall Exceptions - added ports 5631 and 5632 UDP (should this have been TCP?).  Also added File and Print Sharing to the exceptions.  Will try adding the program Remote Assistance at c:\windows\system32\sessmgr.exe, (have not tested this yet).


Do you have a quick fix?




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Kevin Cotreau's picture

PCA uses 5631 TCP and 5632 UDP.


That said, I am not sure why you don't just use Remote Desktop Connection. You can even use it to connect to the console (the session you would get from sitting in front of it) by using the /admin or /console switch (this depends on your OS: /admin is for Vista, and /console is for XP and before). To connect to the console, edit your shorcut as below as an example.


%systemroot%\system32\mstsc.exe /admin


Honestly, it is free since it is included, and I have never had RDC crash.


P.S. I am sure this is going to be moved to a different forum.

Pearl's picture

Hi Kevin,


You are right that RDP comes free with Windows XP. However you may want to go through couple of following articles which document why people prefer pcAnywhere over other remote control applications even when they are freely available.


p c A n y w h e r e a n d W i n d o w s X P R e m o t e D e s k t o p C o n n e c t i o n$FILE/pca105_vs_rdc_cb.pdf


p c A n y w h e r e a n d W i n d o w s X P R e m o t e A s s i s t a n c e$FILE/pca105_vs_ra_cb.pdf


I hope this helps you understand the pcAnyhwere functionality better.




Message Edited by Pearl on 11-21-2008 04:31 AM
Pearl's picture

Hi jbs,


I understand your problem but you do need Ports 5631 (TCP) and 5632 (UDP) opened on the router. pcAnywhere uses port 5631 as the TCP (Data) and port 5632 as the UDP (Status) ports.


In addition, you may want to go through following articles. 




Kevin Cotreau's picture

Hi Pearl. Let me start by saying that I am a big fan of Symantec and have been installing Backup Exec (back to when it was still VERITAS) and Symantec Corporate Edition (now Endpoint Protection) in EVERY ONE of my clients for over 10 years. For most of those years, I used PC Anywhere to remote in, but no longer.


First, in practice, from my experience you will find that every now and then PCA hangs and requires a restart of the Host service. This can be a pain if you don’t have someone local to the server. I can't remember RDC ever hanging.


That said, if you read that document on the comparisons of RDC to PCA, it is kind of a joke. The document is antiquated and from its own text: "The single biggest limitation of Remote Desktop Connection is that it requires Windows XP to be installed on the host computer. This effectively prevents most companies from adopting Remote Desktop Connection as a solution since they have not begun to evaluate Windows XP.” Oh really? If this is THE biggest limitation, the argument is lost.


In addition, from the text, “Remote Desktop Connection supports only TCP/IP connections. This is a severe limitation for mobile professionals and other employees working outside the office.” Of course, NO ONE uses any other protocol now, ESPECIALLY from the outside, so this is not a reason either.


Lastly, with RDC, you can share the desktop between two users, who are both logged in by opening task manager, going to users, highlight the session you want to connect to, right click, and click connect.


I continue to support Symantec whole-heartily, and I can understand you wanting to back your product, but I stand by my comments that RDC has it beaten hands down both functionally and price-wise. It is not even close really.