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Screen sharing bug between Mac mini/MacBook Pro


Topic starter


I'm trying to enable Apple's screen sharing between my MacBook Pro and my mother Mac mini. For some reason the session gets established but is drop only a second after that.

The firewall is not activated on either computers, so I do not get what's wrong here. 

Any idea?

7 Answers

Are you going from Macbook Pro to Mac mini?  Or the other way around?

Have you enabled System Preferences -> Sharing -> Screen Sharing on the remote Mac?

Location of each Mac?  Same house, or across the Internet?

If across the Internet, how do you make your connection?  That is to say, Back-to-My-Mac, or have you opened a port in the remote home's router that points to the remote Mac and port 5900?

  • On the local Mac do you find the remote Mac in the Finder sidebar and connect that way? 
  • Do you use Finder - Go -> Connect to Server -> vnc://remote.Mac's.address ?
  • Do you use Safari and enter vnc://remote.Mac's.address ?
  • Do you use an Applications -> Utility -> Terminal session and the command
    • open vnc://remote.Mac's.address
  • Other?

Are you logging in as the owner of the remote Mac, or as a Guest, or as another account that is maybe not frequently used?

When you login, is that also the account that currently has control of the screen, or are you using an account different from the account that currently has control of the screen.

Anything else you can tell us?


I tried it both ways, with the same result.d

I tried that over the internet first, but now the computers are on the same LAN/WiFi.

I normally use the screen sharing feature within the Messages application. I do not know if there is another way to remote control a Mac when we’re not on the same LAN. As you may guess it is for support purposes. That method also do not requires login to the computer with an account. Both computers are using the latest macOS version (Mojave). I do not see the computers in the Finder sidebar either.



I would suggest using TeamViewer would be more reliable - which is free for personal use. If necessary on your mother's Mac Mini you could install the "TeamViewer Host" version which launches in the background at system boot time (normal TeamViewer is an app which can be set to launch at user login time). You can then set an "unattended access" password which means you can get at it without somebody needing to "approve" the connection at the Mac Mini end.

I remember trying TeamViewer, but it required her to give me a password, which was an issue...

Now I can't get to their download page, getting an error "502 Bad Gateway"!!

I've just tested downloading from here and seems OK.

Gateway error might be temporary network issue or might be caused by a proxy server setting or malware that tries to prevent access to support sites??

There are 3 flavours of TeamViewer:

  • QuickSupport - doesn't have to install, but doesn't run in the background, only allows incoming connections. Requires user interaction to provide random passcode or click a button to accept connection.
  • Full - needs to be installed, can be set to launch at login, can be given a static password for unattended access, can also perform outgoing connections.
  • Host - typically used for servers, launches at system boot, has access to the login window and across user IDs, can have a static password, easiest option for somebody with limited ability to find an app and launch it and authorise access.

Do you have an anti-virus package installed?  Or LittleSnitch?

This is starting to smell like a 3rd party addition messing with your networking.

PS.  If your Mother's Mac is remote, is a good choice for remote access and support.

Using Screen Sharing requires a password as well.  But it could be a password for an account of your own, separate from your Mothers.  TeamViewer's password is just for TeamViewer access, it is not your Mother's account password.

Topic starter

Ok, software download is working for me this morning.

I guess I need an online TeamViewer account to activate Host configuration, is that correct?

As far as I’m aware the host version doesn’t impose any tighter restrictions than the other two. ie. still free for personal use.

The “client” side of TeamViewer is always free to install so no activation code or licence required there. Then from the “support” side the client’s machine ID and password should be all you need to connect. 

Having the account gives you the benefit of storing groups of machine ids that sync to whichever device you are supporting from. 

Topic starter

I'm not so sure how I could have entered the ID of the remote computer, but with an account all looks to be working fine. 

The one thing I would love to find out is if there's a way to remove the dock icon and keep only the menu bar item. I know this will distract my mother!

Host version does not have a dock icon. Just a menu bar item.

Topic starter

Then it means I installed the wrong thing I guess...

Is there a specific installation files for host or a specific parameters I should look for?

Yes, TeamViewer Host is a different download/installer.

Topic starter

Thank you guys. I think I got everything settle for now.