Remote Access

This guide meant to assist in establishing a remote connection to your reef-pi main control page using one of the two popular options, RealVNC and Tor. reef-pi is normally accessible only within the home wifi network, using any of these two approaches you can access reef-pi from anywhere.


The first option is to use software such as Real VNC. They offer a cloud option that will allow you to access your Raspberry Pi from anywhere. Please note, this option logs you into the Pi like a remote desktop connection. From there you would be able to use Chromium in the Pi to access reef-pi.

This solution is available for both Android and iOS. Installation is easy, just follow the directions on the links below.


The other option is to use Tor. Tor has a nifty function that is fairly secure and relatively easy to set up called Hidden Services

  • We recommend following the directions provided by Symantec. At various place the guide gives you the code to enter in the command prompt.

  • On step 3 where it tells you to “Edit file /etc/tor/torrc” you’ll have to use the command “sudo nano /etc/tor/torrc”.

  • For step 4, follow the directions except make the following changes.

HiddenServiceDir /home/debian-tor/hidden_service/
HiddenServicePort 8080
HiddenServiceAuthorizeClient stealth user1

You’ll notice the IP address matches the local address used to access reef-pi via your local network, just make sure it matches with what you use to access the reef-pi over your local network.

You can change the “user1” entry to whatever you want. Remember, the stealth entry right before the “user1” is important, that entry makes your hidden service only viewable by people with the specific key (which you’ll get in step 7. The “user1” generates a new key. If you want to have multiple users, just change the “user1” entry and you’ll end up with a new key.

Follow the rest of the directions for getting a Tor client and browser for your computer and Andriod device (haven’t been able to locate an iOS option for this yet) and you will be ready to go.

Please note: Tor is slow. Right after you’ve created your Hidden Service it may take 10 minutes for the Tor network to populate and allow the connection. In addition, it may take 1 minute for the reef-pi page to load. Once it’s loaded them the delays are considerably reduced.