I have a Mac Mini that I would like to login remotely from a Windows XP laptop. Is this possible? What types of things do I need to do to allow remote connections from the Mac, and what type of interface will I be able to have? (Command-line interface? Or full GUI interface?)

5 Answers 5


SSH is installed by default on OS X. You just need to download PuTTY on your Windows machine and connect to your IP. SSH provides console access.

If you want a GUI you can use VNC.

  • 2
    Yes. Remote SSH access is disabled by default though... You will have to enable it: Settings/Sharing May 3, 2009 at 11:01
  • 1
    Mac OS X also includes a VNC server by default. Just enable Screen sharing and activate VNC using a password in the config. No encryption though. May 15, 2009 at 21:48

You can remotely log on to a Mac from a PC using VNC. Instructions for setting up a Mac as a VNC serve can be found here and here. For the PC, any VNC client should work.


You can enable the ssh daemon on your mac by going to

System Preferences.app -> Sharing -> (enable) Remote Login

You can enable screen sharing similarly with

System Preferences.app -> Shareing -> (enable) Screen Sharing.

If you are not using the Apple Remote Desktop software, you'll need to do the extra step of clicking on the Computer Settings button, and supplying a VNC password


This isn't the free option, but if you have two macs running Leopard and a MobileMe account you can use Back To My Mac to connect to the other mac's desktop. Here is a quick screencast of this feature.

  • You can also establish a screen-sharing connection, without MobileMe, using iChat.
    – Matt G
    May 21, 2009 at 8:52

I use these this web site. You need to sign up but you can access you choosen computer. I use to to fix my dad's computer. I use the basic free versio. Works fine with both Mac and PC https://secure.logmein.com/

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