VNC stands for Virtual Network Computing and is a desktop sharing application that allows you to remote control another computer. A VNC connection requires a VNC server to be set up on the remote system and a VNC viewer to access the server. In Ubuntu Hardy Heron, both the VNC server and viewer come pre-installed in the package.
Setting up VNC server on Hardy Heron
To set up a VNC server, go to System->Preferences->Remote Desktop.
In the General tab, check the box “Allow other users to view your desktop“.
If you want to remote control the computer, also check the box “Allow other users to control your desktop” (When this box is left unchecked, remote users can only view what is happening on the remote computer, without the ability to control it).
On the Security section, check both the boxes and enter a password. This will ensure that no one can access your computer without your permission.
For more security option, you can click on the Advanced tab and check the boxes “Require encryption” and “Lock screen on disconnect”
Accessing a VNC Server
To access a VNC server, go to Applications->Internet->Remote Desktop Viewer.
Click on Connect. On the popup window, enter your hostname.
If you do not know your hostname, simple right-click on Network icon on the top right hand corner and select Connection information. Record down the IP address (say 10.128.4.96). Then enter IP address:0 (example 10.128.4.96:0) into the hostname.
If you are in the local network, you can simply click “Find” to locate the VNC server in your localhost. Once done, click on Connect. You should now be able to connect to the VNC server.
Screenshot of remote viewing of my own desktop on my desktop