What is Headless Mode?

Headless mode combines the best features of mac and iPad to create a whole new way of working. With Headless Mode, you get the processing power of a mac with the Retina display of an iPad. 

Headless Mode turns your iPad into a touchscreen display for your Mac mini. The iPad Pro has such a large and beautiful display that it makes it perfect to use as the primary monitor. 

Movement between touchscreen and external tools is seamless. An external mouse, keyboard, and Apple Pencil can all be used with Headless Mode. And since Luna Display runs over WiFi, you can have a completely wireless workspace. 

Use your iPad as the main display for Mac mini

With Luna Display, use your iPad as the primary monitor for your Mac mini. Combine the best of Mac mini and iPad by harnessing the processing power of the Mac mini and the edge-to-edge full display of the iPad.

Headless Mode features

  • Touch pan and zoom gesture support
  • External keyboard support for iPad

Minimum requirements for Mac and iPad

  • Mac mini must be a 2011 model or later, and running macOS 10.11 (El Capitan) or later
  • iPad must be an iPad Mini 2 (2013+), iPad Pro (2016+), iPad 5th generation (2017+), or iPad Air (2013+) model running iOS 9.1 or later. (32-bit devices are not supported)
  • External mouse and keyboard connected to Mac mini are optimal for this setup in case of MacOS permissions and logins

Getting started with Headless Mode

Setting up headless mode is a simple and straightforward process. In just a short amount of time, you’ll be able to use an iPad as a primary monitor with Headless Mode. 

Note: An external monitor is required for the initial setup of Headless Mode, but is only needed the first time you configure your devices (unless FileVault is enabled). When setting up Headless Mode, we recommend connecting an external keyboard and mouse or trackpad to your Mac mini.

  1. While your Mac mini is connected to an external monitor, download the free Luna primary Mac app
  2. Disable FileVault: In System Preferences > Security & Privacy > FileVault, select “Turn Off FileVault”. If the option is greyed out, click the padlock in the bottom left corner to make changes. 
  3. Automatic Login: After disabling FileVault, go to System Preferences > Users and Groups > Login Options. Select your preferred account for automatic login. If the option is greyed out, click the padlock in the bottom left corner to make changes and make sure FileVault is disabled first.
  4. Download the free Luna Display iPad app on your iPad. 
  5. Connect the iPad to the same WiFi network as the Mac mini. If WiFi is not available or unstable, you can connect your devices using a USB cable. 
  6. Launch both the Luna Mac app and the Luna iPad app. Follow the instructions on your iPad screen to connect. You will be prompted to plug Luna into your Mac mini. 
  7. Once Luna has connected your devices, you can disconnect the external monitor from your Mac mini.