VNC® Wayland Developer Preview

RealVNC® are pleased to make available a free Developer Preview* of our flagship VNC product that enables VNC Server to run in a Wayland environment, and remote desktops provided by the Weston reference compositor. Feedback welcome!

* The Developer Preview is free for the Wayland development community to use, but please note it is provided "as is" and without warranty of any kind. Deployment is not recommended in a production environment.

Developer Preview License key

Getting started

  1. Checkout and build the Wayland master branch. Note the Developer Preview was built against commit 113aac5.
  2. Checkout the Weston master branch, and build it with screen sharing, for example ./ --enable-screen-sharing. Note the Developer Preview was built against commit 32abdbb.
  3. Note: There are some reference instructions for these steps on a virtual machine running Ubuntu 14.04 Server here.

  4. Download VNC 5.2, and install VNC Server by running a command such as sudo dpkg -i VNC Server.deb or
    sudo rpm -U VNC Server.rpm.
  5. Apply the license key to VNC Server by running the command sudo vnclicense -add key.vnclicense
  6. Note: The license key is valid until 30th June 2016. All features of VNC with an Enterprise license are included, except those listed here.

  7. Copy the three Developer Preview files to a path location such as /usr/local/bin, and make sure they are executable.
  8. Make sure your user is a member of the weston-launch and video groups.
  9. Edit ~/.config/weston.ini as follows:

Running VNC Server

You can run VNC Server in User Mode or in Virtual Mode. Restrictions.

User Mode Virtual Mode

VNC Server remotes the desktop of the Linux computer. Connected VNC Viewer users see exactly what a person sitting in front of the Linux computer would see.

Note that VNC Server automatically stops (and VNC Viewer users are disconnected) if the Linux computer user logs out.

VNC Server creates and remotes a virtual desktop. Connected VNC Viewer users therefore do not see what a person sitting in front of the Linux computer would see.

Instead, they gain access to a persistent private workspace. The virtual desktop is not destroyed until VNC Server is explicitly stopped.

To start VNC Server:

  1. Launch a Weston desktop.
  2. Press Ctrl+Alt+S.

Note it is only useful to start VNC Server once per user session.

To start VNC Server, run the command:

> vncserver-virtual-wayland

You can start VNC Server as many times as you like to create as many virtual desktops as you need.

Click to see how VNC interacts with Wayland and Weston:

Click to see how VNC interacts with Wayland and Weston:

Establishing a connection from VNC Viewer

  1. Download VNC Viewer to any supported Windows, Mac, Linux, or UNIX computer.
  2. Enter the IP address or hostname of the Linux computer, for example Note that:
    • This is likely to be sufficient to connect to VNC Server in User Mode, since by default it listens on the registered port for VNC, 5900.
    • You must qualify the network address with a display number to connect to VNC Server in Virtual Mode, for example The display number is reported on the console when VNC Server starts.

    If you are connecting over the Internet, you must configure the firewall and port forward the router protecting the Linux computer, and enter the public network address to connect.

  3. To authenticate to VNC Server, enter the system credentials you normally use to log on to your user account on the Linux computer.

Restrictions and notes

This section lists differences between the Wayland and a standard X-based installation of VNC 5.2 with an Enterprise license:

Feedback and support

Please contact us to provide feedback, ask a question, or report a problem.

Release notes