How to run VNC on UT Math Network
VNC stands for Virtual Network Computing. It is, in essence, a remote display
system which allows you to view a computing 'desktop' environment
from anywhere on the Internet and from a wide variety of machine architectures.
VNC consists of two types of component. A server, which generates
a display, and a viewer, which actually draws the display on your
Start up a server on a math lab computer
To start up a server a lab machine, run the command vncserver.
You need to run this command in a command shell. To get a command shell
on the console, use the menu
To get a command shell remotely, you need to get a SSH (secure shell) client
for you operating system first. Linux and MacOS should have it installed by default.
For Windows** users, putty
is a free easy to use ssh client. Please choose randomly a computer from
lab1.ma.utexas.edu, lab2.ma.utexas.edu, ... lab70.ma.utexas.edu
The command vncserver will prompt you for a password, please create a password and
remember it. If succesful, it will inform you the server number.
You need to remember it also. The following is an example session.
You will require a password to access your desktops.
New 'X' desktop is lab12:1
Your password is encrypted and saved in ~/.vnc/password.
You may modify the file ~/.vnc/xstartup to your personal
X startup settings. If you do so, you have to stop the
current vncserver and start a new one for it to take effect.
To stop a vncserver, run vncserver -kill server_name
For example, the command
vncserver -kill lab12:1
will stop the server I created in the above example.
vncserver will not prompt you for a password
in future invocations. It uses your password saved in
Run vncviewer from a windows computer.
First, you need to download the vncviewer to your windows
machine. The binary is about 150k, a local copy is
The simplest method to download this file is to
open a browser (IE or netscape), visit this
and click on this
download link. When it prompts to save the
downloads, save it in C:\vncviewer.exe.
To run it, just type vncviewer from a shell window,
or double click its icon in a file browser, or run it from
start->run and enter C:\vncviewer.exe in the command entry.
When vncviewer starts, it will prompt you for
a server and password. For the server created above,
the name is lab12.ma.utexas.edu:1
To run matlab on a remote desktop, type the command
in a command window.