How to access remote VMs through VIrtual Machine Manager/virt-manager

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In this article, we’ll discuss how to establish a connection to the graphical user interface (GUI) of a virtual machine (VM) running on a remote qemu/KVM setup or on remote Linux servers such as Ubuntu, Rocky, CentOS, or Debian.


In this article, we present the depicted architecture shown in the image. Our setup involves utilizing an Ubuntu desktop on my home machine to access an Ubuntu server running in a remote datacenter, with a VM created on top of that Ubuntu server. Refer to the network diagram for clarity.

Note: The remote server is accessible through the SSH


  1. Both the local machine and the remote server possess sudo rights, granting users elevated privileges to execute administrative tasks. This authorization allows users to perform critical operations and make system-level changes on both the local and remote systems with proper authentication.
  2. Virtual Machine Manager/Virt-manager installed in the local machine by defualt installed in the ubuntu 22.04 desktop. VMM is a program used to control virtual machines on computers that run Linux. It’s like a dashboard that lets you create, change, and manage virtual machines easily. With it, you can start, stop, and monitor virtual machines, as well as do things like copying them or moving them to different computers. It’s a handy tool for managing virtual computers without needing to type a lot of complicated commands.
  3. The remote server is accessible through the SSH
  4. VM creation capabilities or already created VMs in the remote server you can have look in the following article how we create VMs on the Ubuntu server.

Adding Connection on VMM

Our primary objective is to view the GUI of the VM or access its remote console from our local machine. Once you have Virtual Machine Manager installed on your local machine, simply open it and navigate to the “File” option as illustrated in the accompanying image. Then, click on “Add Connection”.

After selecting “Add Connection,” refer to the snapshot below and activate the “Connect to remote host over SSH” option. Then, enter the necessary SSH details.

After a successful connection, you will see something similar to what is shown in the following snapshot. In the snapshot you cal also see that I have one VM my-vm which is in shutdown state. You can perform start stop and creation of the VM from the same dashboard.


In summary, using Virtual Machine Manager (VMM) to access remote VMs makes managing them easier. It gives you a simple way to start, stop, and keep an eye on your VMs. VMM also lets you connect to remote VMs using SSH, which makes managing virtual environments simpler. With its easy-to-use features, VMM helps administrators and users handle their virtual machines from afar, making it a handy tool for managing virtual setups.

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