I'm trying to VNC into my MBP running Lion using TightVNC on Win7.

Under Screen Sharing I have Allow access for All Users turned on, and Anyone may request permission and VNC viewers may control screen checked.

When I try to connect, it connects fine, but all I see is a screen full of the textured dark grey background used on the login screen.

If I log out of my Mac then VNC in, I'm presented with the Login screen proper, can login over VNC and everything works fine, but this is not how I expect VNC to work and not how I require it to work.

Is there a way to make it so VNC-ing in simply controls the currently logged in user like it usually does?


3 Answers 3


VNC server changed on lion. You can now log in without a vnc password but instead he os users each get their own loginwindow allowing simultaneous log in distinct from what the local display shows.

Some discussions on what exactly changed can be found here: Are the changes to Lion's screen sharing documented anywhere publicly?

I do know the mac screen sharing client as well as edovia's iOS screens apps work well with the new lion changes, so there's hope other third party clients can get updated to work better with the new changes.


It sounds like you ARE controlling the existing session, just another screen of it (like when you attach a second monitor).


When you get to the grey screen, you need to pretend that the login box is there. You just can't see it. Type your username and password just like you would at any login screen. The grey screen is replaced by the contents of your VNC server's session.

When you observe the all grey screen -
1. Enter your username, and hit Enter (advances cursor to the next field)
2. Enter your password, and hit Enter (you should be able to see remote screen)

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