I can't send a Ctrl-Alt-Delete combination to my Windows computer


There is a default system policy in Windows 7 and above that prevents system services from sending Ctrl-Alt-Del (the Secure Attention Sequence, "SAS").

Note that only VNC Server running in Service Mode (this is the default mode on Windows) may process this key sequence sent from a connected VNC Viewer.

How do I resolve this?

There are two ways to solve this, either by setting the group policy to allow services to simulate SAS, or by overriding the group policy in place. Either: 

  1.  Set SimulateSAS to 2 in the Expert tab of the VNC Server Options dialog which will override the domain policy for VNC Server, or;
    Since the server runs as a local system account with administrator privileges, the server is able to momentarily change the group policy to allow it to inject the SAS whenever it is sent from a connected VNC Viewer.
  2. Check that the "Disable or enable software Secure Attention Sequence" policy is set to allow "Services" on the VNC Server PC.
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  • Option #1 solved it for me, I also had to restart.
    VNC Server > Options > Advanced > Expert > SimulateSAS - Change value to 2 > Restart PC

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  • I was having this issue with one of the nine servers we have, and option 1 fixed it. I did not have to restart it. Thank you.

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