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Starting and stopping VNC Connect

You can operate VNC Connect programs from the graphical desktop in the standard way for Mac applications, or alternatively from the command line.


By default, VNC Server in Service Mode starts automatically when the computer is powered on. Stop VNC Server to prevent this; your change is remembered.

Operating VNC Server at the command line

By default, VNC Server is installed in /Applications/RealVNC.

Note that commands for VNC Server in Service Mode must be run with elevated privileges, for example using sudo.

Operation Mode Command
Start VNC Server User /Library/vnc/vncserver-root
Service VNC\ Server.app/Contents/MacOS/vncserver_service
Establish a reverse direct connection to Listening VNC Viewer User /Library/vnc/vncserver -connect <computer>
Service /Library/vnc/vncserver -service -connect <computer>
Start and establish a reverse direct connection to Listening VNC Viewer User /Library/vnc/vncserver -iconnect <computer>
Service invalid operation
Reload license keys and parameters without stopping User /Library/vnc/vncserver -reload
Service /Library/vnc/vncserver -service -reload
Get help User /Library/vnc/vncserver -help
Service /Library/vnc/vncserver -help
Stop VNC Server User /Library/vnc/vncserver -stop
Service /Library/vnc/vncserver -service -stop

Operating VNC Viewer at the command line

VNC Viewer is a disk image that you can ‘install’ by dragging it to the Applications folder.

Operation Command
Start VNC Viewer VNC\ Viewer.app/Contents/MacOS/vncviewer
Start VNC Viewer and establish a direct connection VNC\ Viewer.app/Contents/MacOS/vncviewer <computer>
Start Listening VNC Viewer VNC\ Viewer.app/Contents/MacOS/vncviewer -listen [<port>]
Get help VNC\ Viewer.app/Contents/MacOS/vncviewer -help