VNC Viewer Failed to Connect to Server

Written by dave wilson
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VNC Viewer Failed to Connect to Server
Resolve VNC Viewer connection issues. (3d network node image by brunoil from Fotolia.com)

VNC is a reliable application that can provide lightweight, easy to use access to the remote desktop of nearly any computer. As with most network applications, however, there are instances in which the VNC Viewer may fail to connect to the VNC Server. By investigating a few key areas, usually the root cause can be identified along with the solution.

Skill level:
Moderate

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Click "Start" and then click "Run" (if using Windows XP), or "Search" (if using Windows Vista or 7). Type "cmd" in the "Run" or "Search" box, and then press the "Enter" key.

  2. 2

    Type "netstat --bn" on the command line and press the "Enter" key. Look for the VNC service and its configured port number. If the VNC service is not listed, click "Start," then "Run" (if using Windows XP) or "Search" (if using Windows Vista or 7). Type "services.msc" and press "Enter." Find the VNC service in the window that appears. Click on the VNC service once, then click the "Start" link. Try again to connect from the VNC Viewer to the VNC Server.

  3. 3

    Type "ipconfig" and press the "Enter" key on the command line of the VNC Server computer. Note the IP address displayed in the output. Type "x.x.x.x::1234" in the "VNC Server:" field of the VNC Viewer, replacing "x.x.x.x" with the IP address of the VNC Server, and "1234" with the VNC service port number, and press "Enter." If the VNC Viewer does not successfully connect to the VNC Server, proceed to the next step.

  4. 4

    Configure port forwarding on the router or firewall that separates the VNC Server from the Internet. Port forwarding should be set up to forward requests received on the VNC Server port number to the IP address of the VNC Server. Note the IP address of the Internet interface of the firewall or router while configuring port forwarding. Type "x.x.x.x::1234" in the "VNC Server:" field of the VNC Viewer, replacing "x.x.x.x" with the IP address of the firewall or router and "1234" with the VNC service port number, then press "Enter." If the VNC Viewer is not successful in connecting to the VNC Server, proceed to the next step.

  5. 5

    Click "Start", then click "Run" (if using Windows XP) or "Search" (if using Windows Vista or 7), and then type "firewall.cpl" in the "Run" or "Search" box. Press the "Enter" key. The Windows Firewall configuration window will appear.

  6. 6

    Click the "Exceptions" tab, then click the VNC Server service from the list. If the VNC Server service is not listed, click "Add Program," then select the VNC Server service from the list and click "OK". Select the VNC Server service box and click "OK".

  7. 7

    Type "x.x.x.x::1234" in the "VNC Server:" field of the VNC Viewer, replacing the "x.x.x.x" with the IP address of the firewall or router, and "1234" with the VNC service port number. Press the "Enter" key. If the VNC Viewer does not successfully connect to the VNC Server, proceed to the next step.

  8. 8

    Disable the firewall component of the antivirus software (if installed) on the VNC Server computer. Type "x.x.x.x::1234" in the "VNC Server:" field of the VNC Viewer, replacing the "x.x.x.x" with the IP address of the firewall or router, and "1234" with the VNC service port number. Press the "Enter" key. If the VNC Viewer does not successfully connect to the VNC Server, proceed to the next step.

  9. 9

    Click "Start" on the VNC Viewer computer, then click "Run" (if using Windows XP) or "Search" (if using Windows Vista or 7). Type "cmd" in the "Run" or "Search" box, then press the "Enter" key. Type "tracert x.x.x.x", replacing the "x.x.x.x" with the IP address of the VNC Server computer or firewall/router if present, and press the "Enter" key. The output should display every device IP address between the VNC Viewer and VNC Server. If the output shows " * " before displaying either the IP address of the VNC Server or the IP address of the firewall/router, then the network device represented by the " * " may need to be reconfigured or replaced.

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