I recently replaced my mac computer and would like to know if it is possible to run software on that computer that actually runs on another computer.

My problem is that I use a terminal emulator that speaks SCO-ANSI on my old computer, but it is not compatible with the new version of OS X. I don't want to pay the exorbitant ($200+) licensing fee to get a current version of the software, so I'd like to know if it's possible to run the emulator on the old computer and just "stream" its window somehow to my new Mac computer.

Is this possible? Thanks very much!!!

  • 1
    The X-window system (comes with the Mac) can do what you're asking – mpez0 Jul 1 '13 at 20:59

I use Mountain Lion on my new Mini and Leopard on my old G5. Rather than force the Mini to learn old tricks, I log into the G5 remotely and share its desktop on the Mini, running any apps on the G5.

(If you're using two machines with Lion or Mountain Lion, they can share files directly across the shared desktop. If not, make a common network folder they both have access to and drag files to that.)

Go to the Sharing Preference Pane on both computers and turn on all the Sharing Prefs your computer will allow. (Hint, though...don't use "Remote Management," it will cause problems.)

Log in to the "host" using your newer computer and "Share screen". When I need to run an app no longer supported on Intel Macs, like Transtype Pro, I boot into the G5 and "share" it off that computer.


@Jakehotep's answer is rather scattershot. @mpez0's comment/answer is a pain unless you're a dedicated X-windows user from way back.

Just turn on screen sharing on the old computer.

System Preferences, Sharing, Screen Sharing. No need to turn on "all the sharing prefs" to share the screen, which is the current-era terminology for (exactly) what you want to do.

The old computer should show up under "shared" in the left-hand side of a Finder window on the new computer. Connect from the new computer to the old computer, click the button in the upper right for "Share Screen", log in, you're there. The one non-intuitive thing I've found is that you need to log out of the old computer before closing the connection, unless you are happy with the old computer sitting there logged in (at its local screen.) And of, course, anyone at the location of the old computer can watch what you do on the screen.

On the other hand, you can just remove the monitor from the old computer - the main thing I use screen sharing for, having gotten it turned on during one of the times I had the local screen working briefly, is to get some use out of a MacBookPro which had the defective Nvidia graphics replaced with the same defective Nvidia graphics, which of course failed again, but Apple would not replace again. Screen sharing into it works, even though it can't display anything on the internal, or an external screen.

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