Enabling Remote Desktop Sharing in Xubuntu

I set up Xubuntu 11.10 on the Dell 531S driving the Thing-O-Matic, as the Unity UI seems surprisingly like crippleware: every feature that isn’t mandatory is prohibited. However, Xubuntu’s XFCE UI also has a long list of things that should be easy and aren’t, such as enabling remote desktop sharing. Gotta have that so I can fire up the printer and monitor progress from upstairs.

It turns out that the Vino server is installed, but not enabled, so you must start by firing up vino-preferences in a terminal to set some preferences:

This is a local machine behind a firewall, so a moderately secure password with no confirmation will suffice. Your paranoia may vary.

Then drill down through the menu from Settings Settings ManagerSession and Startup to the Application Autostart tab, then Add the Vino VNC Server to the list: /usr/lib/vino/vino-server. You can start it manually if you have the hots for immediate sharing.

This seems to be impossible in Unity, trivially easy in GNOME, and unduly mysterious in XFCE.


  1. #1 by Christian Becker on 2013-10-17 - 09:34

    Thank you, that was exactly what I was looking for.

    • #2 by Ed on 2013-10-17 - 12:43

      That feature certainly shouldn’t be so well hidden!

      Glad to help out…

  2. #3 by Iain Elder on 2014-04-02 - 06:23

    Thanks for documenting your fix. I ran into the same problem last night. I raised a bug about it on the Gnome Bugzilla:

    • #4 by Ed on 2014-04-02 - 08:54

      The response explains why I gave up reporting bugs to any organization large enough to need a bug tracking system…

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