Ubuntu includes screen sharing but it's just a mirror of the small screen, so here's a tip to serve up a vnc desktop for use on a larger screen client computer (I use MacOS X's built in VNC client).
Here's how it looks:
To do this, at least on Ubuntu 10.04, but probably the same on earlier versions:
- aptitude install tightvncserver
- run vncserver once so it creates a .vnc directory in your home
xsetroot -solid black
- Start the server like this:
vncserver -geometry 1500x1100 -depth 16
- Connect with your VNC client, on my mac it's vnc://10.0.1.198:5901
- Stop the server like this
vncserver -kill :1
Obviously adjust the geometry XxY pixels above according to the size of your client screen.
All credit to this thread on the Ubuntu forums.
I think it would be a great feature if Ubuntu had a headless mode that would share a vnc screen without the need to run a gnome session on the physical laptop. One issue is that there is no wireless connection until you log in.