September 20, 2008

A relatively pain free Linux/OS X VNC setup

Ever since I got my 2nd monitor, I been using VNC to work on my laptop. Leopard's inbuilt VNC server isn't really VNC compliant, and has many issues when used with a normal VNC client. I have found Vine server to be an excellent replacement. The client side is a little interesting. RealVNC didn't work too well for me, in that often the screen would stop responding, or it would not receive key events. The best setup I have found is to use tightvnc with the following Vine server settings:

  • Devices

    • Keyboard Layout: US

    • Keyboard Events: User Session Events

The client and server will happily share the clipboard if you enable it. Settings are accessed via F8 in the client, and via Preferences in the server. The client is smart enough to synchronise clipboards only when it loses focus - which would be you switching away to say, paste a url into firefox. All in all it is a fairly painless experience.