A while ago, Chris mentioned that we’ve been trying out a few ideas for making remote pair-programming easier. We’ve been doing quite a bit more remote pairing recently. Most of the time we just use a combination of VNC (I’ve been using Vine Server) and voice over Skype (using a headset really helps).
But something else we’ve used successfully is multi-user GNU screen sessions. The advantage of this technique is that much less bandwidth is required and the terminal is much more responsive. I thought I’d post the magic incantation we’ve been using (on OSX), in case anyone else finds it useful…
# on the server sudo chmod u+s /usr/bin/screen
# first user connects to server over ssh and runs the following screen -S <session_name> ctrl-A :multiuser on ctrl-A :acladd <client_username>
# second user connects to server over ssh and runs the following screen -x <server_username>/<session_name>