Remote operation of Spectrometer using VNC Viewer


Remote operation of the spectrometer through VNC (Virtual Network Computing) gives you the same control you have when physically sitting at the spectrometer computer.  There is no need  to be logged in and have ICONNMR running prior to remote access as required for the ICONNMR based web server.  Only your samples need to be placed in the sample changer or inserted in the magnet ahead in time.  So you can prepare samples during the day, leave them in the sample changer and run them later from your office or from home.

VNC Server

The VNC server (x11vnc) is automatically started on demand when a connection is attempted, so there is no need to manually start a VNC server.    The server runs in so called “localhost” mode, which means that access requires a login to open a secure tunnel to access the server.  Access is possible from any computer located on the UWM campus or any outside computer that is logged into the UWM VPN through Global Protect.

Off Campus Users

Access from outside the UWM campus requires the user to be connected to the UWM VPN (Virtual Private Network).  Please follow the links below how to install and run the Global Protect VPN software.

Installing GlobalProtect: (Windows) (Mac)

Connecting to VPN:

Runing the VPN Client

For ease of use, VPN client executable and pre-configured startup files are available through the NMR lab website and the NMR lab file share employing the TurboVNC software.  There is no need to install VNC software on your computer, but you need to have Java installed on your computer.

Starting VNC client from the NMR lab website

Go to the NMR lab instrument status page:

or select “Instrument Status” from the [Local Resources] menu of the NMR lab home page:

On the Dashboard, go to the section of the instrument you want to connect to and click the [X11VNC] icon:

Download the file (turbonvnc-nmr500.jnlp), then open the file from your browsers downloads menu.

Starting the VNC client from the NMR lab File Share

If you are using a UWM managed computer, the file shares are automatically mapped as S:\ drive.  On your personal computer, follow the instructions below to map the drive: (Windows) (Mac)

Locate the drive in Windows Explorer, then navigate to the TurboVNC directory on the NMR lab file share: S:\_U_LS\ResearchGroups\NMR\Programs\TurboVNC

Windows users, click on the Windows Batch file appropriate for the instrument you want to connect to.  For the Avance500, that would be nmr500.  Mac/Linux users use the corresponding.command file.

Connecting with the VNC Client

If you are using a UWM managed computer,or if you are using your UWM Panther ID as login on your computer, just click “Connect” at the bottom of the Window:

If necessary, set your login ID:

If the login on your PC is different from your PantherID, you need to go to [Options…] and set the “SSH user” at the bottom of the [Security] tab to your Panther ID (the login name you use to log into the spectrometer.  The settings will be remembered the next time you connect.

Next enter your password when prompted:

The VNC viewer will show the spectrometer computer window as it is displayed on the console.  If nobody is logged in that will be the login screen.

Set screen size

Depending on the size of your monitor, you may need to resize the screen to best fit your needs.  On small monitors, You want to minimize scrolling , but still be able to read the screen.

To adjust the scaling, select the options menu with the left most button of the top menu:

In the connections Tab, set a proper scaling factor.  Note that you can chose from the pull down menu or type in a number (in %)

Best adjust for the screen to vertically fill the window.  The [Auto] option will try to horizontally fill the window, but since the Avance500 has two monitors, this will display both monitors with insufficient vertical scaling.

You can maximize the available window by entering full screen mode (icon on top menu).  Exit fullscreen mode with the [F8] function key and unchecking the full screen option.

To end the session, but to remain logged into the spectrometer, disconnect clicking on the X button (right most button of the Top menu.

To log out of the instrument, use the finish command in Topspin or do a system logout on the spectrometer.  That will also disconnect your remote session.