Remote Desktop Client For Mac To Linux

The remote desktop client works on Linux, Windows, Mac OS, FreeBSD, Android and iOS. One, you can comfortably run a desktop app or even a portable version on a flash drive. You get the usual Banking-standard TLS 1.2 encryption technology, real-time collaboration, built-in file transfer, recording sessions and what not. Remote desktop apps allow you to access a computer anywhere in the world. Here are 5 of the best Linux remote desktop apps you can use on a Linux machine.

Active1 year, 10 months ago

I fear I know the answer to this already, but I would like to be able to connect to my Mac Mini in a 'remote desktop' fashion.

I would like to connect to my Mac as if I were sat at my desk, but I want to be able to access it from my Ubuntu machine.

I'm using Snow Leopard and Ubuntu Server 8.04.


Linux Windows Remote Desktop Client


So I tried the screen sharing option, the problem I have with this is that the screen resolution I see is that of my 22' at home, so on my little netbook the 1920 x 1200 resolution requires lots of scrolling this way, and scrolling that way etc etc.

With my experience of Windows systems, the remote desktop protocol spawns a new session specifically for remote access, solving the screen size problem and means the machine doesn't have to be logged in to be connected to.

Is there an option of this nature that I could explore, instead of sharing the screen?

I did try LogMeIn, unfortunately this had the same effect as the screen sharing.

Ben Everard
Ben EverardBen Everard
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11 Answers

Remote Desktop Client Mac To Linux

On the Mac: Go to System Preferences -> Sharing and enable 'Screen Sharing'.

On Ubuntu: Using any suitable VNC client (xtightvncviewer appears to be the most compatible), enter the IP address or host name or your Mac Mini and then connect. You should now see your Mac's desktop.

For added security, click on the 'Computer Settings...' button in 'Screen Sharing' to enable and set an additional VNC password if required.

Asinine MonkeyAsinine Monkey

I tried lots of things but this was the only thing that actually worked for me:


There are two tricks to using VNC from a non Mac to connect to a Mac running OS X Lion.

Turn on the VNC server by enabling System Preferences -> Sharing -> Screen Sharing. Even though it provides little security, a VNC password must be set so that OS X will present an authentication scheme that makes sense to a standard VNC client. Enable “VNC viewers may control screen with password“

After connecting, you will see a grey linen-backgrounded desktop with nothing in it. Type your user name and password. After logging in, your desktop contents will display!

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Pratik PatelPratik Patel

Personally I think the best solution is not bitmap-based.

NoMachine (and other groups like FreeNX) offer something called NX. It is an X windows interface that provides for bitmap caching and compresses the line drawing commands that are sent to the graphical device. NX can be very fast over low speed connections because it does not send differences between screens as does the VNC protocol. Over high speed connections the quality and performance is excellent. It's at least as good, or better, than Remote Desktop on Windows.

NoMachine offers a free version of their server and client. They support Windows, Linux, Apple Mac and are now working on Android and iOS. You can download their free products or try their commercial products from this page:

The FreeNX group also provides an NX server and clients but I'm not aware of any support for Apple Mac systems. Of course it's a good idea to keep up with their progress which you can do here:

Dave M
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Sam AzerSam Azer

You can use VNC. It is platform-independent.

From Linux, TightVNC will connect to an Mac OS X session served by Apple Remote Desktop if the VNC option is enabled.

Peter MortensenPeter Mortensen
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This may not be the best solution for you, but I use SSH, but it's not on by default.

To enable it, from system preferences, go to Internet & Networking > there is a Sharing >Remote Login.

The best part about SSH for me is that I can access it painlessly from anywhere including my phone!

EDIT: This is going to be the most cross platform support you're going to get out of any of these options.

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There's an application called Splashtop ... you run a 'Streamer' on the host, and the main app on the client. It performs brilliantly.

For some reason, you have to pay for Splashtop on Macs, but it's free for most other platforms.


For Macs with Retina screen don't forget to scale the display.


for example with UltraVnc :

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LogMeIn Free works with PC/Mac as a server, and PC/Mac/Linux as clients.

Andrew LewisAndrew Lewis

As Windows Remote Desktop allows for connecting multiple users: see Can a Mac Machine be used by Multiuser at same time? and Is there a multi-user Remote Desktop app for Mac OSX? if that's a requirement.

I use iRAPP. (

It provides as a terminal server on MacOS. You can then connect to this mac using standard RDP from any Windows machine. For me this solution has way more performance than any VNC I have tried. Enjoy.


I am using Vinagre as VNC client from Ubuntu to Mac Mini running macOS Sierra 10.12.6.

From Man:


Michal PrzybylowiczMichal Przybylowicz

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged macosubuntumacremote-desktop or ask your own question.

Connect to Windows machine in AWS or any cloud from within MacOS, Linux

  • RDP clients on MacOS

This is a tutorial on the different ways to “remote into” a Windows instance from a MacOS or Linux machine.

Remote Desktop Connection on Windows machines

Remote Desktop Connection is installed with by default on all Windows machines.

Within Start Programs > Accessories, is a RDP (Remote Desktop Protocol) client program that can be used without being an Administrator. It uses uses port 3389. The RDP is also known as “Terminal Services”.

If you are running a Windows virtual instance (under VMWare Fusion), etc.,

  1. If you were given a rdp file, click on it because the RDP program is associated with the “rdp” file extension:

    This way you see the dialog filled in.

Alternately, open the program manually:

  1. Click the Windows “Start” icon button at the lower left corner (or wherever you moved it).
  2. Click the “Remote Desktop” icon on the Windows 10/2016 Desktop if it’s there:

    Alternately, type enough of Remote to see “Remote Desktop Connection” appear for you to click.

    Alternately, type mstsc to see “Remote Desktop Connection” appear for you to click.

    Either way:

  3. In the “Remote Desktop Connection” dialog, paste into the Computer Name: field the DNS name such as

  4. Click “Show Options” for a pop-up:

  5. Type in User Name “Administrator” if you’re using an Amazon EC2 instance, since Amazon EC2 makes use of PEM files for security.

    Alternately, if you are working within an enterprise environment, you may need to add a network domain name in front of your assigned named, separated by a “backward slash”. This is because enterprises create for the same person different accounts for internal and external use.

  6. Click “Save”
  7. Click “Connect” to see a “Welcome” screen.
  8. Click “OK” on the Welcome screen.

    CAUTION: Remember to Log off, especially if you are sharing a machine with others.

Save rdp file from Amazon

  1. Click the “Connect” icon at the top of the Console.

  2. Click “Download Remote Desktop File” such as:<strong>rdp</strong>

  3. Double-click on the file to open the RDP client.

    Back to the dialog:

  4. Click “Get Password”.
  5. Click “Browse…” and select Downloads, the .pem file downloaded earlier.
  6. Click “Decrypt Password”.
  7. Double-click on it to highlight it and press Ctrl+C to copy the string to your Windows Clipboard.
  8. Open a Notepad file and paste it there so you won’t lose it.
  9. Click “Close” to dismiss the dialog.

    RDP Client

  10. On Windows Explorer or MacOS Finder, double-click on the .rdp file saved earlier to invoke an RDP client program (if one is installed on Mac, see below).
  11. On the RDP client, click on the Password input field and paste the Clipboard contents.
  12. Leave the Domain blank and click OK to connect.

  13. Click View Instances.
  14. Scroll down to copy the IPv4 Public IP such as

Other operating systems

On other operating systems (such as MacOS or Linux), if you have no administrative rights on your corporate Windows laptop, spin up cloud instances in the cloud and access them via a client that uses RDP.

RDP clients on Linux

On Linux machines, there is RDesktop at

RDP clients on MacOS

On the Mac, these RDP clients can reach into instances of Amazon EC2 or other cloud that house Windows servers.

A) Royal TS is the enterprise client, at $29 each.

B) Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Client Connection 2.1.1 for Macintosh is gone

B) Microsoft Remote Desktop from Apple AppStore

C) Microsoft Remote Desktop for Mac from HockeyApp

D) Vagrant RDP

E) Chrome RDP Add-on is no longer supported?

F) CoRD from Sourceforge is obsolete

Royal TSX

The licensed client is available for Windows and Mac.

  1. Get to their download page at:

  2. Click the “Download” button for Mac to download a file such as:

    royaltsx_3.2.6.1000.dmg (23.3 MB)

  3. Click the file downloaded to unzip it.
  4. Click the .dmg file to install it.

    As this page says, those without a license can connect up to 10 application instances and a single document per application instance.

  5. Using Finder, go to your Applications folder.
  6. Drage the program to the Launch bar for easy access.
  7. Open the app by clicking on the Launch bar or Applications folder.
  8. Click Apply in the UI that pops up.
  9. Drag the orange logo and drop it on the blue (Applications) folder.
  10. Click Open to the confirmation.
  11. Click the red dot to dismiss the installer pop-up.
  12. Those who buy a perpetual license, have a way to store and retrieve the key string.
  13. Click to apply it.
  14. TODO: Install plugins
  15. TODO: Create document.
  16. TODO: Invoke.

Microsoft Remote Desktop Client gone

Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Client Connection 2.1.1 for Macintosh (installer RDC_2.1.1_ALL.dmg at 9.4 MB) is no longer available for download from here

Image credit:

Microsoft’s Remote Desktop for Mac OSX from Apple

  1. Click this link at the Apple Store.

    NOTE: This is newer than the edition that comes with Microsoft Office for Mac 2011.

  2. Click the blue “View in Mac App Store”.
  3. Within the Mac AppStore app, click Get.
  4. Click Install.
  5. Click Open.

  6. Click + New

BLAH: This UI version is difficult because there are no favorites or sorting by last use, aliases, etc. (that I know of). I now have to scroll down the list every time, and remembering which of many cryptic names I want, which is difficult if you have a lot of servers on the list.

NOTE: Start for Remote Desktop Gateway that explains how to configure RDGW in detail

Microsoft HockeyApp Remote Desktop for Mac

This enables you to run the most powerful of servers from a ChromeBook laptop with minimal RAM and hard disk.

  1. Click this link to the
    Microsoft Remote Desktop for Mac webpage, which is part of the used by Xamarin developers for Crash Reporting, User Feedback, User Metrics and In-App Updates.

  2. Click “Download”.
  3. Select “Save” folder to receive file (it’s 20.4 MB).

    CAUTION: This is in Beta as of August 30, 2017. The history shows weekly builds.

  4. In Finder, navigate to Downloads folder to double-click on that zip file to unzip it.
  5. Scroll to “Microsoft Remote Desktop Beta”.
  6. If you’re the suspicious type, run md5 on the file to see if the hash created matches the one on the website.

  7. Double-click on the unzipped file to invoke it.

  8. If the “Help us make your experience better?” appears, click “not now” or “Yes”.

  9. Click “Add Desktop”

  10. In the Quick Connect dialog, click on the white field and press Ctrl+V to paste the EC2 DNS Addressor click “Skip” if you don’t have an address yet.

    Close and Open again

  11. Click the program name “Microsoft Remote Desktop Beta” at the top and select “Quit”.
  12. In Finder, Downloads folder, right-click and Move to Trash

    • Microsoft_Remote_Desktop Beta
  13. Get to the Mac Launcher by squeezing your fingers and thumb together on the Touchpad.
  14. Type “Mi” until you see “Microsoft Remote Desk”, then click it.

    First time

    TODO: Verify this.

  15. Click “Add desktop”.
  16. Click “Connect”.
  17. Copy the password from where you saved earlier.
  18. Click on Password field. Press Ctrl+V to paste it.
  19. Click “Continue” to get see the Windows start-up screen.
  20. Click on the icon (in case you have several instances). You should now see a desktop.


  21. In Finder’s Devices left pane under, click the eject button for the “Microsoft Remote Desktop Beta” installer.
  22. In Finder, drag the “Microsoft Remote Desktop Beta” from within Downloads to drop on the Applications folder.
  23. If you are using the program often, drag the “Microsoft Remote Desktop Beta” from within Applications to drop on the Task Bar so that it is visually avaiable.

  24. Click the red “Add desktop” icon.
  25. For User Account, select “Administrator” because that’s what Amazon does.
  26. For PC Name, paste the name such as

  27. Click “Save”.

Vagrant RDP

If you are getting into a Vagrant instance containing Windows:


  1. Set the communicator and network ports in your Vagrantfile, such as:

  2. On a Terminal:

    vagrant rdp

Chrome Add-on

  1. If you don’t have a Chrome browser, install it from the default Internet Explorer.
  2. Open a Chrome browser to this site.

    PROTIP: The web page does not use https. Use (the https on this doesn’t resolve).

    [email protected] or 214.739.5454

  3. Click the green “Launch App” button at the upper-right.

    CAUTION: I get this running forever:

  4. Highlight the DNS address (such as “”) and press Ctrl+C to copy it into your Windows Clipboard.
  5. Click on the blank field and press Ctrl+V to paste.

  6. PROTIP: If you can’t connect, make sure RDP port 3389 is open among Inbound port rules.

  7. For Domain:
  8. For UserName:
  9. For Password:

CoRD on Sourceforge

CoRD on Sourceforge, which is for Mac OS X 10.5—10.8 (obsoleted when 10.12 Sierra is out). is 3.4 MB

After running this, drag it into your Applications folder.

To add a new server, click on the menu File.

Android Chrome Remote Desktop

Although it has a related named, the Android phone appChrome Remote Desktop securely accesses your computers from your Android device.

  1. Set up remote access on desktop computers using the Chrome Remote Desktop app from Chrome Web Store:

    Click Add to Chrome, then Add at the pop-up.

  2. Launch the app.

    Select Remote Assistance providing user-to-user screen sharing for technical support.

  3. On your Android device, open the app and tap on any of your online computers to connect.

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