I am connecting to my iMacs running OS X Mavericks remotely. For security purposes I have fast user switched to a dummy account before leaving work, so that my remote connection doesn't allow anyone near my machine when I connect to get unauthorized access.

This works fine, but when I test the process from another machne in my office, I notice that when I first connect, the screen comes on (powers up) and it prompts for the dummy user's password. After a few seconds it times out and goes back to sleep, and if that were it I could deal with it, but this is not the end of it. Whenever there is activity in the VNC session, the screen comes back on again! I am not constantly typing, so the reult is that the screen keeps going on and off over and over and over.

Aside from the concern of wear and tear (the whole display essentially being turned on and off over and over) there is also somewhat of a security concern as well. This constant cycling can attract unwanted attention. For instance, at night when the office is dark, one office suddenly becoming light and then going dark over and over can attract the attention of security. During the day, if the display is in a common area, the screen going on and off can interrupt meetings as people try to figure out why the machine is behaving strangely or are just distracted by it. It may be undesirable to have an indication that the machine is in use, and this continual waking is very indiscreet.

Is there some way to disable this? I have tried several VNC clients to no avail. I don't recall for sure, but I don't think OS X Mountain Lion had this problem.

This related question is similar, but the asker is apparently okay with solutions that involve dimming the screen. This is not acceptable in this situation, because while the computer in question usually is idle, it is conceivable that another user on a different account might be trying to use the machine when I VNC in. Therefore, any attempts to dim the screen would potentially be fighting against a different user on the machine.

Additionally, in my situation I need to VNC into my Mac from an Android device, so solutions specific to Mac OS X clients (which seem to cover most of the remaining answers) are not applicable here. I have tried both clients which require the generic VNC password, and those that automatically log me in separately from the logged in user, but the screen wakes up in all situations I have tried. Having to install a special VNC server on my Mac when there is already one that comes with OS X is also undesirable, as it is really more trouble than is saved by eliminating the problem.

Edit: ok, edited to explain how my question is different from and not answered by the question it is marked as a "duplicate" of. Now what?

  • Unfortunately, none of the answers work for me... – Michael Jan 7 '14 at 23:47
  • The best way to get an answer to the core problem is to put a bounty on the linked question and/or generalize / improve the existing question. The choice of VNC client doesn't matter, it's the OS X that lights and controls the screen. – bmike Jan 8 '14 at 3:35
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    We could edit this significantly to focus on Android clients that at lease support multiple OS X user accounts? – bmike Jan 8 '14 at 4:15