atom feed5 messages in com.realvnc.vnc-listProblems viewing OS X desktop from Linux
FromSent OnAttachments
Phil EndecottNov 1, 2008 10:34 am 
Peter BunnNov 2, 2008 12:02 pm 
James WeatherallNov 3, 2008 2:34 am 
Phil EndecottNov 3, 2008 3:14 pm 
Dale EshelmanNov 14, 2008 9:18 pm 
Subject:Problems viewing OS X desktop from Linux
From:Phil Endecott (
Date:Nov 1, 2008 10:34:58 am

Dear Experts,

I've been trying to view a Mac desktop from Linux and I've encountered a number of annoying little problems. I'd like to know whether any of these are due to the particular server and viewer combination that I'm using and could be cured by changing one or the other, or whether there are any work-arounds.

At the Linux end I'm using the Debian package of "VNC Viewer Free Edition 4.1.1 for X". At the OS X end I'm using the Apple VNC server that's built in to OS X 10.5.5.

The issues are:

- There seems to be no clipboard sharing.

- When I move a window, it doesn't seem to do any copyrects; it redraws the whole window each time.

- I have to start vncviewer with --FullColour=on, else it terminates without showing the display. I think this means it's using 32 bpp, even though I've configured the Mac to use "thousands of colours" (i.e. 16 bpp) in its display settings dialog, so it is wasting half of its network bandwidth.

- I'm using a UK keyboard, and when I press # (i.e. the unshifted key to the left of return) I get a B# (pound sign). I also get a B# (pound) when I press shift-3, so there seems to be no way to type a #. (Now I think about it, I don't know for certain if the # key works on a directly-connected keyboard; I suppose I should check. It did recognise the keyboard as a UK model when I installed it, but the machine doesn't have a keyboard plugged in at all while I'm VNCing to it.)

- I would like to be able to re-map the modifier keys. Specifically, I'd like to be able to type Ctrl-Letter for things like copy, paste etc and for the Mac to see Cmd-Letter. This is partly because I'm habituated to typing ctrl-C rather than cmd-C in GUI apps for copy, but also because my Linux window manager intercepts cmd, so the VNC viewer never sees it. I also need to be able to send "option + click"; when Mac people say "option", do they mean the key with "cmd" written on it?

Many thanks for any suggestions.