Home / Remote desktop - from Windows to Mac OS X edit
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I just tested VNC-ing from my Windows XP box to my Mac OS X. VNC is an open-source (GPL-ed) multi-platform remote display application.
VNC seems to be the most frequently forked application. There are:
  • the original VNC from AT&T/University of Cambridge, no longer developed (I think) since AT&T shut down the research center
  • realVNC, maintained by original authors of VNC
  • tightVNC, which focuses on improving compression (which improves overall quality of the software)
  • tridiaVNC, Just Another Version with commercial PRO version (wonder how can they do it without breaking GPL), doesn’t seem to be maintained anymore
  • UltraVNC, which focuses on Windows goodies
  • OSXvnc is a server for Mac OS X
  • even more links for VNC-inspired software
I used OSXvnc as the server and tried realVNC, UltraVNC and tightVNC as clients on Windows XP. I’ll stick with tightVNC as it seems to be most responsive (I’m using it with -compresslevel 9 -quality 9 command line settings).
So the question: does it work? Barely.
The quality mostly depends on the speed of your network connection. I was VNCing over my home wireless network (UltraVNC reported the speed of around 2400 kbit/s) and the UI redraws so slowly that working is no pleasure at all. It works but is no fun. It has to be said that Microsoft did much better job with their remote desktop software.

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