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Installing and removing VNC Connect

These instructions explain how to install VNC Connect (version 6+), consisting of VNC Server and supporting platforms, on principal Mac computers you are licensed to control.

You are free to download VNC Viewer to as many devices you want to control from as you like, on any platform.

Upgrading to VNC Connect

If you are upgrading from VNC 5.x and have a valid Personal or Enterprise license key, installation should be seamless. You do not need to stop VNC Server, and any configuration changes you have made will be preserved. If you wish to enable cloud connectivity, perform this post-install step.

If you have an out-of-date Personal or Enterprise license key for VNC 5.x, you must purchase a subscription as a new customer.

If you have a Free license key for VNC 5.x, you can migrate to a new, free Home subscription providing you install VNC Connect desk-side. You cannot migrate over a remote control session.

If you wish to upgrade from VNC Enterprise Edition or VNC Personal Edition 4.x, we recommend you first contact Support.

Downloading VNC Connect

Download the VNC Connect PKG installer to the computer you want to control.

Installing VNC Server

Using desktop tools

Double-click the package to start the graphical Install Wizard, and follow the instructions. Administrative privileges are required.

At the command line

Installing at the command line or via SSH may be quicker and more convenient providing defaults are acceptable. To do this, run the following command as a user with administrative privileges:

installer -pkg <vnc-app>.pkg -target /

Licensing VNC Server

You must apply a subscription to VNC Server. If you do not, remote access will not be available.


VNC Viewer does not need to be licensed.

Using desktop tools

Open the VNC Server dialog and select Licensing from the menu to open the graphical License Wizard. Follow the instructions to sign in with your RealVNC account credentials.

If you have an Enterprise subscription, direct connectivity will be automatically enabled, and you are prompted to enable cloud connectivity at the same time.

At the command line


You can only license VNC Server at the command line if you have an Enterprise subscription.

A 25 character license key for offline or remote deployment is available from the Deployment page of your RealVNC account. To apply it, run the following command as a user with administrative privileges:

/Library/vnc/vnclicense -add KEY

Direct connectivity is automatically enabled. To enable cloud connectivity, and optionally join one or more existing groups in order to restrict computer discovery, run the following command as a user with administrative privileges:

/Library/vnc/vncserver -service -joinCloud TOKEN [-joinGroup GROUP-NAME]...

Cloud connectivity tokens are available from the Deployment page of your RealVNC account.

Setting up the environment for VNC Server

For best results, disable built-in Screen Sharing or Apple Remote Desktop before starting VNC Server.

Starting VNC Server

VNC Server starts automatically in Service Mode.

To learn how to operate VNC Server at the command line, follow these instructions.

Getting VNC Viewer

To connect to and control this computer, get VNC Viewer for the device you want to control from.

For a Mac computer, download the VNC Viewer disk image and drag it to the Applications folder.

Removing VNC Connect

Using desktop tools

To uninstall VNC Server, navigate to the Applications > RealVNC folder, and double-click the Uninstall VNC Server program. Administrative privileges are required. To uninstall VNC Viewer, simply move VNC Viewer.app to the Trash.

At the command line

To uninstall VNC Server, run the following command as a user with administrative privileges:

/Applications/RealVNC/Uninstall\ VNC\ Server.app/Contents/Resources/uninstaller.sh


To completely remove (benign) configuration and other files or settings that may remain, follow these instructions.