5 of the Best Linux Remote Desktop Apps to Remotely Access a Computer

Remote desktop apps are a very useful group of apps because they allow access to a computer anywhere in the world. While the simplest way to do this is via a terminal, if you don’t want to have to type commands but rather want a more advanced way to access a remote computer, here are five of the best remote desktop apps for Linux.

1. Remmina

If you have been using the GNOME desktop environment, chances are you are already familiar with Remmina because it comes pre-installed on many Linux distros. Remmina is a GTK+ 3 application which consists of a main program and a bunch of plugins (RDP, VNC, NX, XDMCP, SSH, Telepathy). To connect to a remote computer you can either enter its address directly or choose it from the list of connection profiles.

2. Vinagre

If you are not happy with Remmina, there is also Vinagre, another remote desktop client integrated into the GNOME environment. One of its advantages is that with it you can have multiple connections open simultaneously. Also, you can browse the network for VNC servers – just don’t abuse this privilege. Vinagre doesn’t support as many protocols as Remmina, but it supports the main ones, e.g. VNC, SSH, and RDP.

3. krdc

KDE fans can use any of the other remote desktop clients, but if you prefer an app that is native to KDE, krdc is your option. krdc is a small and simple app. It might lack some advanced features, but if speed and simplicity are more important, krdc is a great choice. With it you can connect to a remote computer via RDP or VNC/RFB protocols.

4. TigerVNC

TigerVNC is a more universal app because it isn’t tied to Linux only. In addition to the many Linux distributions (Fedora, OpenSUSE, FreeBSD, Arch Linux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux and SUSE Linux Enterprise) it comes with, there are also versions for 64-bit and 32-bit Windows and a universal binary for Intel-based Macs. One of the best things about TigerVNC is that it is under active development and new versions with updates, fixes, and new features are regularly released.

TigerVNC is a client/server application – i.e. you can use it not only to access a remote desktop but also to run a VNC server on your computer, thus making it accessible remotely. If your Internet connection is good, you can use TigerVNC full screen for resource-heavy tasks such as running 3D and video applications.

5. NoMachine

NoMachine is one more multi-OS remote desktop client with a version for Linux. It comes as a personal and enterprise edition. You’ll enjoy it most if you have a high speed Internet connection because only then will you be able to fully utilize its abilities, e.g. watch online video remotely or render animation. Its authors claim “NoMachine is the fastest and highest quality remote desktop you have ever tried.” In addition to the standard features you can find in any other remote desktop app, NoMachine allows you to record your sessions.

If you have the need to remotely access a computer, you have no lack of choices. For Linux users any of the remote desktop apps mentioned above will suffice and allow you to access a computer remotely without any difficulty. If you have any favorite remote desktop apps for Linux that are not mentioned above, do let us know in the comments below.

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Ada Ivanova

I am a fulltime freelancer who loves technology. Linux and Web technologies are my main interests and two of the topics I most frequently write about.


  1. NoMachine and general VNCs, I’ve heard of. All the others completely new to me. Good info (staring point) here that I’ll need to sort through.

    Confused as to why Teamviewer and AnyDesk aren’t included here. These are the two I’m most familiar with for remotely accessing computers.

    1. I sort of tried to include mostly the Linux native apps plus just two more crossplatform. I’ve used TigerVNC and NoMachine in the past and I know they are good, this is why I’ve included them. As for Teamviewer and AnyDesk, since they aren’t native to Linux and I already included two other non-native apps, I decided we can do without them. But they also look pretty good to me.

  2. IMHO one that is missing from the list and is important to mention is x2go. It is both relatively easy to setup, especially compared to many of VNC solutions. But more importantly – x2go uses standard SSH (including SSH keys) to remote an X session, which provides better security compared to most solutions. the only caveat is that x2go might introduce significant latency compared to some other solutions, though the latency isn’t that bad.

    1. I haven’t used x2go personally but from what I read, it doesn’t look bad at all. Thanks for the suggestion.

  3. Hi Ada,

    Thanks for the article. I would like to invite you to both test and include ThinLinc among this interesting list. ThinLinc Linux remote desktop server is used in more than 22 countries around the world and is being repeatedly endorsed for performance and stability.


    1. I can’t include all the apps for a given task – I typically limit the choices to 5, 7, or 10 at most, so I usually focus on the most popular ones plus a few that are really impressive, if by chance they are not on the most popular list. ThinLinc isn’t bad, though, but I really can’t include every VNC client out there – it becomes more of a directory listing, than an article.