Accessing your virtual machine


You have various options to access your virtual machine:

We strongly recommend you use the SSH shell and full virtual desktop for production purposes. The built-in VNC client is great for troubleshooting in case of technical issues like crashing VMs or inaccessibility.

Find IP-address or Host name

Before accessing your machine you need to find out the address of your VM. There are two methods you can use:

The IP address can be found under Instances -> VMs. The external IP to connect to starts with 145.100.XX.XX. If there is no IP address or only an IP address starting with 10.100.XX.XX (which is an internal IP address you cannot reach through the Internet), please add an external nic to the VM.

For every VM that you launch, the HPC Cloud assigns it a public host name. The hostname points to the external IP address.

You can predict the host name: ${vmname}.${projectname}
This is the DNS address that you can use to access (ssh) your VM instead of the IP. Please note that special characters may be converted in the host name. The DNS is fixed for a VM with a fixed name, while the IP is changing every time on boot.

You can also find both instances in the Log of your VM.

For example:

Wed Jun 24 17:54:18 2015 [Z0][HKM][I]: Success executing Hook: SurfSARA_Dns: Added
DNS record: ->

In this case the host name of the server is which points to IP address

For example:

If you are working on a project called analysys-acme and you want to have a VM reachable at host name, you just need to give your VM the name r-studio. And, of course, you need to make that VM have a nic connected to the Internet.

SSH access

From a Linux, MacOS or Windows (GitBash) client

Terminal only

In a terminal type


to connect to your Virtual Machine. You can replace the hostname with your VM’s public IP-address and vice-versa.

Terminal with Graphical User Interface

If you have a full desktop environment on your VM and would like to run graphical programs there whose windows you want to view on your local computer, add an additional -X to the command.

ssh -X


You might need to install additional software on MacOS or Windows when using the -X flag.

Note: The first time you start a session to a VM a warning is given that the machine is not cached. Select yes to continue the session.

Terminal with Graphical User Interface for Windows only

If you want to have graphical programs running on the VM whose windows are displayed on your local computer and you are running Windows on your local computer, then you are advised to have a look at Mobaxterm, an application you can read about more at:

Getting a Remote Desktop on a Linux VM

With Xrdp you can remotely log in on a virtual machine, giving you a full virtual desktop. Moreover, you can close the RDP window and pick up the session later, allowing you to continue to work on a graphical desktop while switching off your own local computer.

Further instructions can be found at X-server Remote Desktop Protocol (Xrdp)

Built-in VNC client

The built-in VNC console is accessible from your web browser, and you do not have to install anything on your VM for it to work. When you open it, you will see a screen as if a physical monitor would be connected to a computer.

However, the button to launch that VNC client is placed in different locations depending on the view you are using on the UI. Here is a list of known views:

Cloud view



User view and groupadmin view

To start VNC you can click the small display at the right side of your screen.