HP ZCentral Remote Boost Receiver is the software used to connect to our Escape Studios onsite workstations, where the "sender" equivalent has been deployed.
By installing this software on your home computer, you can connect to and control an Escape Studios onsite workstation from your own home, we call this method Remote Workstation. See here for a more indepth guide to how Escape has enabled you to work remotely.
You will have been sent download links and instructions for the setup specific to Escape.
You can also download the comprehensive official manual for the software from here: https://support.hp.com/gb-en/product/hp-zcentral-remote-boost-software/34928226/manuals
This document focuses on workflow tips. For help with issues getting connected, please see our Remote Workstation Troubleshooting article.
Hints and Tips
You can access the receiver settings by clicking the cog icon before connecting to a machine
There's a lot of functionality in here and you should check the manual for the full list. Some that you may wish to pay attention to are listed below.
Connection -> Display ->
Set Sender Display(s) to match Receiver display(s): This attempts to reconfigure the display on the remote machine to match your own monitor resolution, including the full desktop across all connected monitors. Currently this doesn't work for remote workstations in Linux. Do not use this option if you are running a 4K display at home or on your laptop.
Performance -> Advanced Video Compression ->
Enable Advanced Video Compression on Sender: Uses a different way of encoding that might improve quality or performance, or possibly make them worse in some cases. Try it and see how it works for you.
Performance -> Experience ->
Image Quality: You might want to set this higher if you are doing certain compositing operations where image fidelity is more important than frame rate. Test and see what works best.
Enable Adaptive Image Quality: This is the option you use when frame rate is most important, e.g. when animating. You can choose the lowest that the image quality can get when attempting to maintain the frame rate you specify in the lower box. So for example with Minimum Image Quality of 20, and Target update rate at 30, it will attempt to keep the frame rate at or above 30 frames per second by dropping the image quality only as much as it needs to, but never lower than 20%.
Audio -> Remote Audio ->
Stream audio from Sender: If you are operating completely remotely without even playing video or music on your local machine then you could enable this if you need to hear the audio from the Remote Workstation. Otherwise leave it turned off to preserve resources for the display streaming
Access the Toolbar GUI
If you can't see the toolbar shown below, move your pointer to the top of the screen and keep it there for a moment touching the very top row of pixels. A small toolbar should drop down from the centre of the screen, giving access to some functions.
If your session is connected inside a bordered window, you may need to move your pointer to the bottom of the border, where it meets the top of the remote screen - see the red line in the screenclip below:
Some of the controls are noted in the table below, see the manual linked at the top for full explanations including buttons that are not displayed in the screenshots above (Section "HP ZCentral Remote Boost Receiver toolbar GUI", page 17 of current version)
Pin Toolbar: Choose whether the toolbar remains on screen, or slides away
Run in Bordered mode: This is useful when you want to swap often between your local machine and the remote machine
Run in Borderless mode: You'll use this if using multiple monitors for the remote machine. See section about multiple monitors for more detail.
Run in Fullscreen mode: You'll want to use this if the remote machine is running the exact same resolution as your own single monitor and you intend your workflow to be fully on the remote side.
1:1 Pixel Mode: Ensures that one pixel on the remote machine is rendered as one pixel on the local machine. In most cases this is fine.
Scaled Pixel Mode: This option will be useful if for example your local monitor has a much higher resolution than the remote machine is running at, such as 4K. This function would scale up a 1080P or 2K display to the size of your window.
Ctrl-Alt-Del: This sends the Control-Alt-Delete key sequence to the remote machine. If you do it on your keyboard, it will be intercepted by your local computer and not sent to the remote machine
Access the settings panel. Some options will not be available whilst connect to a remote machine.
Multi Monitor Workflow
The multi display workflow allows you to spread your Remote Workstation session across them, within certain limitations of course. We have tested good performance with dual 1920x1200 monitors.
- Currently not supported for Linux (remote), we will be working on this because it does come with some advantages over Windows
- We don't recommend 4K for even one remote workstation screen, let alone two or more
- Local monitors with different scaling (e.g. 100% on one, but 200% for a higher DPI monitor on the other) will likely not work as expected
Ensure the following option is set:
Now when you connect, which may take a little longer than usual, you'll most likely end up with scroll bars because the remote screen is larger than the local single monitor that it's currently on.
You'll now want to access the Toolbar, and change to Borderless mode. See section above to see how to do so. Note that the toolbar will appear at the top of your Primary monitor, so it may not be where you expect and you might have to scroll horizontally to find it.
Now you might already be good to go, but there's a chance the remote screen might not line up with the local screen. To adjust this, you'll need to engage Setup Mode. It seems fiddly, but you'll quickly get the hang of it:
- Hold the shift key
- Tap the space bar
- Continue to hold the shift key
- You'll know it worked if the screen has a faded desaturated appearance. The moment you release the shift key it will exist Setup Mode, so just do it again if you already let go, but hold on this time.
- Now, whilst still in Setup Mode, with the mouse simply click and drag anywhere in the faded remote window to move it around
- You'll find it "snaps" into place when you line it up correctly with your real monitors.
- You can now let go, and proceeed as normal. It should remember this setup for next time you connect to this machine.