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What is a cloud connection?

A cloud connection is one that is brokered by RealVNC’s cloud service. Cloud connections are extremely secure, convenient and reliable, but please that note both endpoints must be connected to the Internet.

Once brokered, where possible, our cloud service then negotiates a peer-to-peer session between two endpoints, so session data is transmitted directly between them; this is likely to be more performant. However, intermediate network hardware may mean this is not possible, so the cloud service automatically falls back to a relay session if necessary, to ensure the cloud connection succeeds. Note that session data relayed via our cloud service is encrypted end-to-end, so cannot be deciphered by RealVNC, nor anyone else.


If you need to comply with a particular regulatory regime that disqualifies session data being routed via third party servers, you can disable relayed cloud connections. Note, however, this does mean these sessions will fail.

Home and Professional subscriptions

If you have a Home or Professional subscription, cloud is the only connectivity option.

Enterprise subcriptions

If you have an Enterprise subscription, you have more flexibility. You can establish a cloud connection to a particular computer, a direct connection, or both. Read our guide to cloud versus direct for more information.

You can enable cloud connectivity for a particular computer at the same time as you license VNC Server. Either:

  • Sign in to VNC Server desk-side and follow the in-app instructions.
  • Apply your license key and then follow these instructions.

You can check whether cloud connectivity is enabled for a particular computer by seeing whether it appears on the Computers page of your RealVNC account.


Cloud connectivity is disabled by default if you upgrade to VNC Connect from VNC 5.x. Follow these instructions to enable it.