• Documentation
  • »
  • User Guide


About This Guide

Chapter 1: Introduction

Principles of VNC remote control

Getting the computers ready to use

Connectivity and feature matrix

What to read next

Chapter 2: Getting Connected

Step 1: Ensure VNC Server is running on the host computer

Step 2: Start VNC Viewer on the client computer

Step 3: Identify VNC Server running on the host computer

Step 4: Request an encrypted connection

Step 5: Connect to VNC Server

Troubleshooting connection

Chapter 3: Using VNC Viewer

Starting VNC Viewer

Starting Listening VNC Viewer

Configuring VNC Viewer before you connect

Connecting to a host computer

The VNC Viewer user experience

Using the toolbar

Using the shortcut menu

Using the VNC Viewer - Options dialog

Managing the current connection

Changing appearance and behavior

Restricting access to features

Chapter 4: Connecting From A Web Browser

Connecting to a host computer

The VNC Viewer for Java user experience

Working with VNC Viewer for Java

Chapter 5: Exchanging Information

Printing host computer files to a local printer

Transfering files between client and host computers

Copying and pasting text between client and host computers

Communicating securely using chat

Chapter 6: Setting Up VNC Server

Licensing VNC Server

Starting VNC Server

Running multiple instances of VNC Server

Working with VNC Server

Configuring ports

Notifying when users connect

Preventing connections to VNC Server

Restricting functionality for connected users

Stopping VNC Server

Chapter 7: Making Connections Secure

Authenticating connections to VNC Server

Relaxing the authentication rules

Bypassing the authentication rules

Changing the encryption rules

Preventing particular connections to VNC Server

Restricting features for particular connected users

Uniquely identifying VNC Server

Protecting privacy

Appendix A: Saving Connections

Saving connections to VNC Address Book

Using VNC Address Book to connect

Managing connections using VNC Address Book

Saving connections to desktop icons


About This Guide

This Guide explains how to use VNC remote access and control software from RealVNC® to connect two computers over a network, and control one from the other.

Applicable software

All the information in this Guide applies to connections established between a client computer running the latest version of VNC Viewer and a host computer licensed to use VNC Server (Enterprise). Unless otherwise stated, this combination is assumed. To see how to set these applications up, read Getting the computers ready to use.

Note that general principles of remote control, and information relating to particular supported features, also apply to connections established between any combination of the products and license types listed below.

VNC Server (with different licenses applied)

•  VNC Server (Personal)
Contains most RealVNC remote control features. A thirty day trial is available.

•  VNC Server (Free)
Contains basic remote control features.

For more information on licensing VNC Server, start with Licensing VNC Server.

VNC Viewer

•  VNC Viewer for Java
This application is freely available to download on demand from VNC Server (Enterprise) or VNC Server (Personal).

•  VNC Viewer Plus
This application is available to purchase from www.realvnc.com/products/viewerplus/.

•  VNC Viewer for iOS
This application is available to purchase from the Apple App Store. Visit www.realvnc.com/products/ios/ for more information.

•  VNC Viewer for Android
This application is available to purchase from Google Play. Visit www.realvnc.com/products/android/ for more information.

To understand restrictions for connections established between particular combinations of products and license types, see Connectivity and feature matrix.

Intended audience

There is no such thing as a typical RealVNC user or remote control session. This Guide therefore has more than one audience in mind:

•  Chapter 1 is a general introduction to remote control, intended for everybody.

•  Chapters 2 through 5 are intended for users who want to connect to and control a remote computer.

•  Chapters 6 and 7 are intended for users who want to set up the remote computer to be controlled.

This Guide is intended to be operating system-agnostic, as far as possible. Information related to specific operating systems is clearly marked.


Screen captures are of Windows 7 unless otherwise stated. Dialogs and other artifacts may appear different under UNIX/Linux and Mac OS X, or versions of Windows with different themes, but the principle is the same.

Technical Support

You can contact Technical Support if you have a valid support and upgrades contract to use VNC Server (Enterprise) or VNC Server (Personal). To see whether this is the case, examine the Details section of the VNC Server dialog, or run the command vnclicense -list.

For more information, visit www.realvnc.com/support/.

Related information

Visit www.realvnc.com for:

•  Supported platforms, operating systems, and system requirements.

•  Instructions on how to install and uninstall VNC.

•  Release notes, Knowledge Base articles, forums, and FAQs.

•  Information relating to earlier incarnations of VNC.

•  Information relating to other RealVNC products and solutions.