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Connect to a macOS device

Learn how to access a macOS computer over Meshnet from Windows, macOS, or Linux.
To log in to your macOS computer remotely over Meshnet, enable remote access on your macOS system and use a remote desktop client on the device from which you connect.

Before you begin

Make sure that:
  • Both the macOS device you wish to access remotely (remote Mac) and the device you're using to connect are linked over Meshnet.
  • Your remote Mac is on.
Also, it's a good idea to look up the Nord name or Meshnet IP address of the Mac you're connecting to in your NordVPN app. To copy this information for later use, go to Meshnet
, click the device’s Nord name or IP address, and choose to copy it.

Set up your remote Mac for access

Before attempting a remote connection, it's crucial to set up your remote Mac to allow these connections.
macOS Sonoma 14
macOS Ventura 13
macOS Monterey 12 or older
Enable screen sharing or remote management:
  1. 1.
    Select the Apple menu
    > System settings.
  2. 2.
    Navigate to General, and select Sharing.
    Selecting "General" and then "Sharing".
  3. 3.
    Do any of the following:
    • For basic tasks, under Content & media, turn on the Screen sharing toggle.
      Turning on the 'Screen sharing' toggle.
    • For more advanced control, such as installing software, under Advanced, select Remote management.
      "Remote management" toggle enabled.
Tip
Have ready the name and password for the account you're using on your Mac. You can find this information by going to the Apple
menu > System settings > Users & groups.
Enable screen sharing or remote management:
  1. 1.
    Select the Apple menu
    > System settings.
  2. 2.
    Navigate to General, and select Sharing.
    Selecting "General" and then "Sharing".
  3. 3.
    Do any of the following:
    • For basic tasks, turn on the Screen sharing toggle.
      Turning on the 'Screen sharing' toggle.
    • For more advanced control, such as installing software, under Advanced, select Remote management.
      Turning on "Remote management" toggle.
Tip
Have ready the name and password for the account you're using on your Mac. You can find this information by going to the Apple
menu > System settings > Users & groups.
  1. 1.
    Select the Apple menu
    > System preferences and click Sharing.
  2. 2.
    Do any of the following:
    • For basic tasks, select the Screen sharing checkbox.
    • For more advanced control, such as installing software, select Remote management.
Tip
Have ready the name and password for the account you're using on your Mac. You can find this information by going to the Apple
menu > System preferences > Users & groups.

Connect to your remote Mac

macOS
Windows or Linux
iOS or Android
Linux
If you are looking to establish a remote connection between two Mac devices, the macOS Connect to Server feature offers a straightforward solution.
On the Mac you are connecting from:
  1. 1.
    In the NordVPN app, locate and copy the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access.
    Remote device's Nord name and Meshnet IP address are highlighted in the NordVPN app
  2. 2.
    Open Finder
    .
  3. 3.
    In the menu bar at the top of the screen, click Go and select Connect to server.
    Step indicators are placed next the "Go" and the "Connect to server" menu option
  4. 4.
    Type vnc:// followed by the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access and click Connect, as shown: vnc://100.94.97.211 or vnc://secret.raccoon-alps.nord
    Remote device's Nord name is entered in the "Connect to Server" dialog
  5. 5.
    When prompted, enter the name and password of your account on the Mac you're trying to access.
    Remote device's credentials are entered
  6. 6.
    Click Connect.
With these steps completed, you should now be connected to your remote Mac over Meshnet.
To connect to the remote Mac from Windows or Linux, first install the NoMachine
app on both your remote and local computers.
On your local machine, perform the following steps:
  1. 1.
    In the NordVPN app, locate and copy the Nord name or Meshnet IP address of the Mac you want to access.
    Nord name and Meshnet IP address of a macOS device highlighted in the NordVPN app
  2. 2.
    Launch NoMachine and select the Add button to create a new connection.
  3. 3.
    Under Machine address, in the Name field, provide a custom name for the connection.
  4. 4.
    In the Host field, enter either the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access, and then select Add.
    Nord name is entered in the "Host" field and the Add button is highlighted
  5. 5.
    Double-click the newly created connection to initiate the remote connection.
  6. 6.
    If a warning appears indicating that the host's authenticity cannot be confirmed, select OK to proceed.
  7. 7.
    Enter your remote desktop credentials and select OK.
    • Username: your remote Mac's account name
    • Password: the password you use to log in to your remote Mac
With these steps completed, you should now be connected to your remote Mac using NoMachine over Meshnet.
To connect to the remote Mac from iOS or Android, first install the NoMachine
app on both your remote and local devices.

Add a remote connection

On your mobile device, perform the following steps:
  1. 1.
    In the NordVPN app, go to Meshnet
    > Manage devices and copy the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access.
    Remote devices Nord name and Meshnet IP are highlighted in the NordVPN app
  2. 2.
    Open NoMachine and select the Add button, represented by a computer icon with a plus sign, in the upper-left corner to create a new connection.
    The Add button is highlighted
  3. 3.
    Ensure that NX is selected as the protocol and tap Continue.
  4. 4.
    In the Host field, enter either the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the computer you want to access, and then select Continue.
    The Meshnet IP address of the remote PC is entered in the Host field, which is highlighted
  5. 5.
    Keep the default options for Authentication and Proxy.
  6. 6.
    Optionally, in the Name field, provide a custom name for the connection and tap Done.

Access your remote Mac

  1. 1.
    On the NoMachine main screen, double-tap the newly created connection to initiate the remote connection.
    The newly created connection shown on the main screen of the app
  2. 2.
    If a warning appears indicating that the host's authenticity cannot be confirmed, select OK to proceed.
  3. 3.
    Enter your remote desktop credentials and select OK.
    • Username: your remote Mac's account name
    • Password: the password you use to log in to your remote Mac
      Step indicators are places next to remote PC credentials fields and the "OK" button
With these steps completed, you should now be connected to your remote Mac using NoMachine over Meshnet.
On Linux, you can use Remmina
, which is a free remote desktop client available in the default repositories of many Linux distributions.
Note
The instructions below apply primarily to Ubuntu 16.04 LTS or above, but if you use a different distribution of Linux, the procedure should remain similar.

Install Remmina

If you don't have Remmina installed on your system, install it using one of the methods described below.
Terminal
Ubuntu Software
  1. 1.
    Open the terminal.
  2. 2.
    Update the package manager list of available packages by running the following command:
    sudo apt update
  3. 3.
    Install Remmina by entering this command:
    sudo apt install remmina remmina-plugin-vnc
  1. 1.
    Open the Ubuntu Software application.
  2. 2.
    In the search bar, enter remmina and select the matching result.
    Entering Remmina in the search bar
  3. 3.
    Click the Install button.

Add a remote Mac connection

  1. 1.
    Open your terminal and enter the following command:
    nordvpn meshnet peer list
  2. 2.
    In the displayed list, find the Mac you want to access and copy either the Mac's Nord name or its Meshnet IP:
    Peer device's Nord name and Meshnet IP address are highlighted in the terminal window
  3. 3.
    Open the Remmina app that you installed earlier.
  4. 4.
    Click the New connection profile button in the upper-left corner of the app window.
    New connection profile button highlighted
  5. 5.
    Select Remmina VNC plugin from the Protocol dropdown list.
    Selecting Remmina VNC plugin from the Protocol dropdown list.
  6. 6.
    Under Basic, enter the information to create a reusable connection.
    • Server: the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access.
    • Username: your remote Mac's account name.
    • User password: the password for the specified username.
    Filling in the Server, Username, and User password boxes
  7. 7.
    Click Save.

Access your remote Mac

  1. 1.
    Double-click the new connection profile you've created.
     The newly connection profile is selected in the Remmina window
  2. 2.
    Accept the certificate presented by the server to verify that you trust the computer you are trying to access.
With these steps completed, you should now be connected to your remote Mac using Remmina over Meshnet.

Alternative remote desktop tools

If you prefer, you can use other remote access software like AnyDesk.

Using AnyDesk

Once remote access is configured on the target Mac, install the AnyDesk
app on both the Mac and the device you're connecting from.
For this setup, you won't need remote Mac account credentials. Instead, you can use either manual approval on the remote Mac or set up a dedicated unattended access password.
Optional: Enable unattended access with AnyDesk
By default, AnyDesk needs manual approval for incoming connections. To bypass this, you can enable the app’s Unattended access feature:
  1. 1.
    On the remote computer, launch AnyDesk.
  2. 2.
    In the menu bar, click AnyDesk > Preferences.
    Opening AnyDesk preferences from the menu bar
  3. 3.
    Navigate to the Security tab and click Permission profiles.
    Step indicators are placed next to the "Security" tab label and the "Permission Pprofiles" button
  4. 4.
    From the menu on the left, choose Unattended access and select the Enable unattended access checkbox.
    Enabling the Unattended access option in AnyDesk settings.
  5. 5.
    Enter a secure password that will be used for authentication and click Change password.
After applying the changes, you can connect to the remote device without having to manually accept the connection request.
Connect from Windows, macOS, or Linux
On your local machine:
  1. 1.
    In the NordVPN app, locate and copy the Nord name or Meshnet IP address of the Mac you want to access.
  2. 2.
    Launch AnyDesk you installed earlier.
  3. 3.
    In the remote address field at the top, enter either the Nord name or the Meshnet IP address of the remote Mac and click Connect.
    Entering the Nord name of the remote Mac and clicking connect on the AnyDesk app
If you set up an unattended password on the remote Mac:
  1. 1.
    In the Authorization dialog that appears, enter the password you created for unattended access on the remote Mac and click OK.
    Entering the Unattended access password and clicking OK in the Authorization prompt.
  2. 2.
    Optionally, you can select the Log in automatically from now on checkbox to avoid entering the password again for subsequent connections.
If you haven't set up an unattended password, wait for the user at the remote Mac to accept the connection request manually.
Connect from iOS or Android
On your mobile device:
  1. 1.
    In the NordVPN app, go to Meshnet
    > Manage devices and copy the Nord name or Meshnet IP of the Mac you want to access.
  2. 2.
    Open AnyDesk you installed earlier.
  3. 3.
    In the remote address field, paste either the Nord name or the Meshnet IP address of the remote Mac and tap the arrow button to connect.
If you set up an unattended password on the remote Mac:
  1. 1.
    In the Authorization dialog, enter the password you created for unattended access on the remote Mac and tap OK.
    Entering the Unattended access password and tapping OK in the Authorization prompt.
  2. 2.
    Optionally, you can select the Log in automatically from now on checkbox to avoid entering the password again for subsequent connections.
If you haven't set up an unattended password, wait for the user at the remote device to accept the connection request manually.
With these steps completed, you should now be connected to your remote Mac using AnyDesk over Meshnet.

Checklist for a successful connection

If you encounter issues while attempting to connect, check that:
  • Both devices are linked over Meshnet.
  • Both devices see each other as active in the Meshnet peer list.
  • The remote Mac is turned on and not in sleep or hibernate mode.
  • The remote Mac's network settings allow for incoming Remote Desktop connections.
  • The correct Nord name or Meshnet IP address is being used for the connection.
  • You are logging in with the correct remote Mac account credentials, if applicable.
  • Any firewall or antivirus software is not blocking the connection.

See also

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