Remote Control Tiger: How do I remote into a 10.4 box from Windows?
April 9, 2008 11:04 AM   Subscribe

What is the best way to remote desktop into OS X 10.4 from a Windows Server 2003 AD environment?

We are running workstations with Vista Business on a LAN with Win Server 2003 and ActiveDirectory. I have a G5 running 10.4 Server on the domain, but now I'd like to know the best way to remote control the G5. Our goal is to keep it in the server room as a test machine and possibly a web server. I need to be able to fully administer it from my desk.
posted by GS1977 to Computers & Internet (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Get VNC viewer for the windows machine and Vine server for the Mac (formerly OSXVNC, I believe).
posted by Cat Pie Hurts at 11:08 AM on April 9, 2008

Seconding VNC.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:40 AM on April 9, 2008

Make sure you use SSH tunneling with Vine Server.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:41 AM on April 9, 2008

Response by poster: Thanks, guys. Do I need to use SSH even though we're on a LAN behind a corp firewall?
posted by GS1977 at 11:44 AM on April 9, 2008

It's always a good idea to use SSH when handling server administration tasks, as a matter of general practice: what if there is a compromised machine behind the firewall?
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 11:49 AM on April 9, 2008

Response by poster: Gotcha. Thanks again!
posted by GS1977 at 11:59 AM on April 9, 2008

Response by poster: Damn. Seems the only way it will work with the apps Cat Pie Hurts recommended is unencrypted/without SSH. If I have "Require Remote Login (SSH)" enabled in Vine Server, I get connection refused.
posted by GS1977 at 1:22 PM on April 9, 2008

I wrote the instructions I sent you. These instructions are split into two sections: server and client.

You can use the server instructions to set up Vine Server with SSH on the Mac OS X Server box.

The client instructions in this document are for Mac OS X clients, but if you read them, you'll notice that you need to use its Terminal application to set up the tunnel from the client end. You can do something very similar in Windows, albeit with a different application.

For Windows, you can use PuTTY to make the SSH tunnel; it's free and works fine.

The instructions for PuTTY that I link to refer to connecting to the MySQL service, not VNC.

In your case, you will be connecting to the VNC service running on the Mac OS X Server box. VNC runs on ports 5900 and higher. It's usually sufficient to specify 5900 because you will probably only manage one window. Just replace 3306 with 5900 in the instructions and you should be okay.

Also make sure that you have SSH access enabled on the Mac OS X Server's firewall. The easiest way to test this is simply SSH over to the OS X Server box from another host. If this fails, go into the Server Admin tool on OS X Server and make the necessary adjustment to the server firewall.

Once you have the tunnel established, open a VNC client on your Windows Server and visit While this is "localhost", the traffic actually goes over the network through the SSH tunnel and hits the OS X Server box.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 5:21 PM on April 9, 2008

OS X comes with a VNC server built in. You do not need to install anything on your mac server. Simply enable Apple Remote Desktop in the Sharing Preference pane, click the Access Privileges button, enable "VNC viewers may control screen with password" option, and then set a password. Then use your favorite VNC client to connect from Windows.
posted by pmbuko at 12:03 PM on April 10, 2008

Response by poster: I give up. I can't for the life of me get VNC over SSH working. I am able to SSH from Windows to the OS X terminal no problem, so I doubt it's a firewall issue. Is anything supposed to happen onscreen when I click 'Open' in PuTTY?

Much thanks to Blazecock for the instructions.
posted by GS1977 at 2:57 PM on April 10, 2008

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