Configuring Desktop Sharing

In addition to the main Desktop Sharing interface shown and described above, you can also control Desktop Sharing using the Configure... on the Desktop Sharing main window. The Desktop Sharing configuration has two pages, as shown in the screenshot below:

The Network page allows control over the port that Desktop Sharing uses, as shown below.

Desktop Sharing Configuration (Network page)

The Announce service on the network checkbox controls whether Desktop Sharing announces invitations over the network using Service Location Protocol. This is normally a good idea, but only works really well with a Service Location Protocol aware client, such as Remote Desktop Connection.

If you select the Use default port checkbox, then Desktop Sharing will locate a suitable port, and invitations will match this port. If you deselect this checkbox, you can specify a particular port. Specifying a particular port may be useful if you are using port-forwarding on the firewall. Note that if Service Location Protocol is turned on, this will automatically deal with identifying the correct port.

The Security page allows you configure settings related to access to the Desktop Sharing server.

Desktop Sharing Configuration (Security page)

The Allow uninvited connections check box controls whether Desktop Sharing allows connection without an invitation. If uninvited connections are allowed, then you should probably specify a password. You can also use the check boxes here to choose whether you have to confirm the connection before it proceeds, and whether the person connecting can control the desktop, or only view.

If the machine is a workstation, and you choose to allow uninvited connections, you probably want to select the Ask before accepting connections . Conversely, if the machine is a server and you are using Desktop Sharing for remote administration, you probably want to deselect this option.


Desktop Sharing uses the normal RFB password system, which does not transfer your password in the clear across the network. Instead, it uses a challenge-response system. This is reasonably secure, as long as the password is securely guarded.