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Ok i installed vnc server on RHEL 5.9 and also installed Tightvnc viewer on windows 7 and from RHEL i started vncserver and assigned the password using vncpasswd.

Then from tightvnc viewer i gave the IP and listening port xxx.xxx.xxx.xxx:1. It successfully connected with VNC server installed and running on RHEL. And then I gave the password and then BOOOM it gave me this hideous interface

enter image description here

When Actual Desktop is like this

enter image description here

Ok people tell me what Im missing

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What you are missing is an appreciation of the minimalistic beauty of twm. –  Warren Young Jan 18 '13 at 14:27
@WarrenYoung: Indeed, which is the hideous one again? –  sr_ Jan 18 '13 at 14:28

2 Answers 2

up vote 2 down vote accepted

What you see probably is the X11 session defined in ~/.vnc/xstartup, a minimal X11 session, maybe something like (this is how it looks like on Debian)

[ -x /etc/vnc/xstartup ] && exec /etc/vnc/xstartup
[ -r $HOME/.Xresources ] && xrdb $HOME/.Xresources
xsetroot -solid grey
vncconfig -iconic &
x-terminal-emulator -geometry 80x24+10+10 -ls -title "$VNCDESKTOP Desktop" &
x-window-manager &

on another display, probably :1.

There're two things you can do:

  • To access a different desktop that looks the same, you have to start it in this xstartup file, e.g. with exec gnome-session or something similar, have a look for documentation on xinitrc or xsession[rc])
  • To access the same desktop session, you need a different VNC server. x11vnc can do desktop sharing; in your GNOME environment, Vino is probably the preferable choice (as Ignacio pointed out)
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Great info. Just one quick question I have three users on server and I want only TWO users to have access to vnc server. root and emerg users can use the vnc. HOW TO DO THIS –  OmiPenguin Jan 19 '13 at 8:27
(If I guessed the VNC server you use right,) you might be able to use Xvnc with inetd as described in its man page (last paragraph of the linked section). Another (kind of high-overhead but neat) solution might be using the Guacamole remote desktop gateway and configuring access there. –  sr_ Jan 19 '13 at 11:47
I like Guacamole seems fantastic I accept your answer. Great Job –  OmiPenguin Jan 19 '13 at 12:44

vncserver doesn't connect to the actual desktop; it creates a virtual desktop that is configured separately. If you want to access the actual desktop then you need to use either the VNC X extension or Vino.

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Could you please provide a bit more information of how to do this –  OmiPenguin Jan 18 '13 at 14:13

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