[root tip] [How To] TigerVNC Quick Setup

Difficulty: ★★☆☆☆


VNC is a protocol where you use your keyboard/mouse/screen to monitor or control a remote system.

:warning: :zap:
VNC is per definition insecure
Opening a VNC service onto insecure networks like the internet, public libraries, internet cafès etc. may lead to information leaking and/or attempts to take control of your system.

It is highly recommended to only expose VNC to the localhost and connect using a secure connection using SSH or VPN.

TigerVNC Limitations

Multiple X sessions for a single user are not supported
TigerVNC - ArchWiki

This effectively means - if you are logged onto the physical display :0 then you cannot connect a vnc session. If you try to do so, using the same username, a black screen or system lockup will be the likely result.

In that regard it works like Microsoft RDP which logout the physical session when you initiate a remote connection and vice-versa.

Target system (to be controlled)

A graphic environment.

If you start from scratch - e.g. installing a raspberry pi bottom up - you can install lxqt which is fast and has a low memory footprint also it does not take a lot of diskspace.

sudo pacman -Syu lxqt breeze-icons xterm

Install package tigervnc

sudo pacman -S tigervnc

VNC password

Create a password for your login




List the available sessions

ls /usr/share/xsessions

Create the file /home/$USERNAME/.vnc/config with content (replace $SESSION according to your installation e.g. openbox, plasma, lxqt).



printf "session=lxqt\ngeometry=1280x720\ndpi=96\n" > ~/.vnc/config

Display configuration

Edit /etc/tigervnc/vncserver.users and append e.g. :4 - which in turn will correspond to port 5904 - replace $USERNAME with the user you just created the password for.



echo :4=manjaro | sudo tee -a /etc/tigervnc/vncserver.users

Start the vncserver service for the selected display

systemctl enable vncserver@:4

Restart the system.


Controlling system

Install the package tigervnc


Connect using the command line

vncviewer ip.a.b.c:5904 &


Input the password created earlier and you will see the remote system.

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