Remote Access to Apple Desktops

How to access your OS X computer via the command line

To access you OS X computer via the command line you will need to first open a gateway service to the physics department, you can do this two different ways.

Open a VPN Connection

Once you have opened a gateway into the Physics department you can then SSH into your machine. Remember to type the full DNS path for your system e.g:

ssh -XY

How to Remotely Access the graphical interface of your OS X computer via VNC

VNC allows you to take control of the graphical interface of OS X.

Apple Screen Sharing

If you have OS X 10.8 and above installed on your desktop system and would like to remotely access it you can use Apple Screen Sharing, instructions on how to connect can be found here.

Vine VNC

When using Vine VNC please be aware that your screen is still visible to other people and they can take control of the mouse and keyboard.

Instructions for using Vine VNC

To use Vine VNC you need to do the following:

Before you leave the Department.

Make sure that Vine VNC Server is installed on your computer via the Self Service application and it should then be installed in the following location:


DO NOT log out of your system but make sure that you screen is locked.

Once you are external to the Department

Open a gateway into the Physics Department as described in the SSH section and open a SSH connection to your system

From the command line type the following:

/Applications/Vine\\ password pwdfile
replacing password with a password for the VNC connection.

/Applications/Vine\\ -rfbauth pwdfile
this starts the VNC Server with the password specified above

Open a VNC Viewer (it's called Screen Sharing in OS X) and type in the full DNS name of your OS X system you will then be prompted for the VNC password.

You should now be connected to the graphical interface of your machine.

Categories: Apple | Astrophysics | Mac | OS X | Remote Access | Theory