Previous 1 2 Next 29 Replies Latest reply: Jan 23, 2013 4:28 AM by aliasgarbabat
mikeypas Level 1 (5 points)

Have been using TightVNC viewer on a windows based PC to connect to my iMac without any problems.

Upon upgrading to Lion, I am no longer able to connect to VNC.

When I connect, I get a gray screen with my username, prompting me for a password. I am unable to type or click, etc.



I understand there is a new protocol for connecting to VNC. I have no problems mac-to-mac or even iphone-to-mac , however, I am looking for a solution for pc-to-mac.

Does anyone know how to configure tightVNC to make this work? Can anyone recommend another software that would work?


Thanks for any input


iMac 10.6.1, MacBook 10.6.1, Ipod touch, nano, Mac OS X (10.6.1)
  • mariafrom_san_jose Level 1 (0 points)

    We are having the same issue with our Lion. With the help of this thread:



    We came up with a workaround:


    * Use RealVNC client

      - this uses the ZRLE encoding (which is what Lion VNC uses); TightVNC does not use it.


    Configure RealVNC client with:


    * Misc Tab

      Uncheck "Shared connection (do not disconnect other viewers)

      Uncheck 'Only use protocol version 3.3


    * Default Tab (Load/Save Tab)

      Save as default (click Save)


    * Now run VNC viewer and enter the password to authenticate.



    Screen Sharing seems to work but not remote management

    Due to the new multiuser login with Lion, you'll need to log out of OS  before disconnecting to VNC. If you don't log out, you can't reconnect in.

  • mikeypas Level 1 (5 points)


    Thanks for your input, but still having the same problem.


    Downloaded RealVNC , and still got the gray screen asking for password,  but unable to type anything.


    Went to RealVNC website, and they stated that only RealVNC Enterprise edition 4.6.2 can handle Lion. So I downloaded that, installed it with a trial, and **once** it worked, I was able to type my password.


    But since then, I have not been able to reproduce the success. Still get gray screen and unable to type.


    -- What do you mean log out of OS before disconnecting to VNC?

    I leave my Mac on all the time. When I VNC, I would type in my password to log on as admin. Back with Snow Leopard, I just disconnect my VNC and I could reconnect no problem. Now I have to log off? That doesn't make sense.

  • Phunkae Level 1 (0 points)

    RealVNC Enterprise works if you install the Enterprise server on your Mac and use it instead of the OSX VNC. Thats why it says:

    Please note that connections cannot be established using the desktop VNC Viewer to Apple Screen Sharing built-in to Mac OS X 10.7


    Having to log out of OSX when leaving the computer is just stupid, as it means you cant have programs running on it while you are away from it if you want to VNC in later on.

  • mariafrom_san_jose Level 1 (0 points)

    No need to install the Enterprise version. I am using RealVNC personal Edition 4.x with the builtin Lion server and it works fine.


    With regard to 'logging out of the server being stupid'; if you read the thread I posted, it suggests that you log out of the CONSOLE first before you connect via VNC due to the new multi-user function in Lion. If you log out of the Mac console, then remote in via VNC, you will get the login screen (and not just the gray screen). Wait for the blinking cursor and then type in the password to log in.

  • Phunkae Level 1 (0 points)

    I read the thread, the OP writes:

    On your Mac, log out of your user account


    So are you saying there is a way to do this without suspending all running programs? How can I logout of the console as opposed to the system in general?

  • mikeypas Level 1 (5 points)

    1) I contacted RealVNC asking them why their RealVNC Enterprise doesn't work with OS Lion when it says so on their website. They state that there is a known issue with RealVNC and apple os lion screen share.


    2) When I do use RealVNC viewer, I get the gray screen, cannot type anything. If I try again once or twice more, it seems to crash the whole screen sharing. I cannot make contact again with my mac. I know this because on my iphone "iteleport" works 100%, but if I try to use it after I attempt with RealVNC, it can't even make contact with the server. Seems like something is crashing the 'screen sharing'


    3) How does one log out of the console ? Can this be done remotely? If not, then not really useful. How is logging out of the console different from logging off the user?



    -- OPEN QUESTION:     Is there anyone who has got a Windows VNC client to succesfully connect to OS lion built in screen sharing? What application / settings have you used?

  • mariafrom_san_jose Level 1 (0 points)

    I do have the RealVNC 4.6 personal client running on Win 7 x64 that I connect in to the Lion 10.7 builtin VNC server with. I gave you the recipe for it above. We have a Mac server farm and users can reserve time on a Mac running 10.7, so we use it a lot.


    I have seen the 'crashing' on the console as you are seeing after you connect. I have experienced this too. The workaround is to reboot the Mac (unfortunately). Obvioulsy, some bugs need to be worked out. In my case, my 'test' Mac is a MBP laptop, so it was easy enough to just reboot it.


    There is a difference of logging out at the Console rather than thru VNC. The console session is as if you are sitting at the screen and then logging out. Not sure why this is, but if you don't log out at the console, then your remote VNC session will not work (you will just get the gray screen)... I know it's not convenient, but this is all I have right now.

  • mariafrom_san_jose Level 1 (0 points)



    "So are you saying there is a way to do this without suspending all running programs? How can I logout of the console as opposed to the system in general?"


    If you are sitting at the console, this means that you are sitting at the Screen and using the laptop keyboard. This is your console session. Now use VNC to connect in remotely. Open any apps you need, etc. Disconnect from your VNC connection. Connect back in via VNC. Your session is saved and you can continue working. If you log out via VNC, you are logging out of your remote session (not the console).


    The new multi-user session that Apple has implemented is similar to Terminal Services on Windows:


  • Saint Mac Level 1 (5 points)
  • Phunkae Level 1 (0 points)

    Unfortunately the procedure you describe has not solved my problem.


    Connecting isnt a problem, but before I can enter any details into the multi user login screen it will freeze and become unresponsive to further keyboard input. Sometimes I can quickly type a few letters in, but it almost always freeze before I can finish typing my Mac username and password to log in.

    I have tried using different encodings (e.g. ZRLE, Hextile, etc) as well as using Full/Max colors as suggested on other forums, but nothing works.

    I have read that some VNC clients (those on the iPad) have been updated so that you can login with the Mac's username and password instead of the VNC password, but none of the Windows VNC clients seems to be able to do this yet.

  • Saint Mac Level 1 (5 points)

    I am using Ultra VNC and occasionally have success. If you type fast enough, you can sometimes get in. Yesterday I was able to fine. Today I am not having not as good luck. I don't think that the encoding matters here, it seems to be more how quickly you can log in.


    If you're having trouble with a Windows client, I think that downgrading ARD to 3.4 might help.


    Also, RealVNC Enterprise (not free) appears to have Lion support now, but the free version does not.

  • mikeypas Level 1 (5 points)

    I can attest that RealVNC Enterprise (not free) doesn't work either. I have an open ticket from them, and they say there is an issue when using the VNC server embedded in Lion.

  • Saint Mac Level 1 (5 points)

    Are you using the OS X authentication? It says that the new version supports Lion. I'm sure you have to actually setp OS X authentication, because otherwise just logging in regularly will not work.

  • mikeypas Level 1 (5 points)

    From RealVNC website re: RealVNC Enterprise:

    Please note however that connections cannot be established using the VNC Desktop Viewer to Screen Sharing built-in to Mac OS X 10.7 (Lion). For further information and release notes please visit:

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