Virtual Network Computing (VNC)

Last Updated: August 18, 2011

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Definition - What does Virtual Network Computing (VNC) mean?

A virtual network computing (VNC) is a graphical desktop-sharing application that uses remote frame buffer protocol to remotely control another computer. This form of desktop sharing transmits keyboard and mouse events from one system to another over the network based on screen updates.

Techopedia explains Virtual Network Computing (VNC)

Virtual network computing is a platform-independent remote desktop sharing application where the desktop display of one computer is remotely viewed and controlled over a network connection. A VNC viewer on one operating system connects to a VNC server on the same or another operating system.

The VNC system consists of a client, server and communication protocol:

  • The VNC server is the program on the machines that share a screen, allowing the client to take control of it passively.
  • The VNC client is the program that watches, controls and interacts with the server. The server is generally controlled by the client.
  • The VNC protocol uses the remote frame buffer protocol, which is based on graphic primitives passed from the server to the client and event messages passed from the client to the server.

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