VNC, or virtual network computing, is a great tool for remotely controlling a Mac. It is essentially a remote display system which allows you to view a computing 'desktop' environment not only on the machine where it is running, but from anywhere on the Internet and from a wide variety of system types.
Unfortunately, running a VNC server on a "headless" Mac (one with no display) can be a difficult task. The VNC server naturally cannot run if there is no system user interface server running, and the Mac OS X itself will not start the system user interface server unless it detects that a display is connected.
MacFixIt reader JR suggests a tip for tricking Mac OS X into thinking a display is attached:
"One easy, cheap way to solve it is run down to your local GoodWill computer store , buy a Apple display adapter plug for a couple bucks, and plug it into the video port on the machine.
"Model # 590-1120-A works fine. It has the Apple logo and model number written on it.
"This particular model of display adapter fools Mac OS X into thinking there is a monitor attached, and the OS will therefore start the system UI server the next time you boot up, allowing VNC server to start up normally. There may be other models that work; but this one I know for sure works."Feedback? Lateemail@example.com.Resources