I have several macs that I login to remotely periodically and sometimes the login will hang and display a spinning wheel. Currently, I have to ssh to the system and run sudo pkill loginwindow which also logs out other users. I would like to avoid interrupting anything currently running but still be able to log in via VNC.

The other solutions have suggested removing authentication which I would prefer not to do.

1 Answer 1


I found a solution which works for me.

TL;DR: use sudo pkill -9 -u 0 -fx '/System/Library/CoreServices/loginwindow.app/Contents/MacOS/loginwindow' instead of sudo pkill loginwindow

I originally used the answer from MacOS Mojave remote access login screen stuck on infinite loading spinner but logging out everything became a problem. I ran pgrep loginwindow and found I was killing two processes.

ps -f on those two PIDs gave me:

XXX XXX 1 0 11:28PM ?? 0:06.58 /System/Library/CoreServices/loginwindow.app/Contents/MacOS/loginwindow console
0 XXX XXX 0 5:47PM ?? 0:00.21 /System/Library/CoreServices/loginwindow.app/Contents/MacOS/loginwindow

Killing the nonconsole process allowed the VNC connection to succeed with no spinning wheel.

My new process is:

  1. Close VNC/Screen Sharing Window
  2. Connect via ssh: ssh user@host
  3. Run sudo pkill -9 -u 0 -fx '/System/Library/CoreServices/loginwindow.app/Contents/MacOS/loginwindow'
  4. Connect using VNC as usual

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