Configure Approved Apps

For an added layer of security, a host is able to enforce an approved applications list. This means that the only apps people can see and interact with are the applications added to the Approved Applications whitelist. We highly recommend configuring Approved Apps, if you only intend to only allow friends to interact with certain applications, or inviting people to a session with Guest Access. If you intend to allow friends to control your desktop, we recommend disabling Approved Apps. Please note this feature is currently available on Parsec app for Windows only. This article covers how to configure Approved Apps. 

Enable and configure Approved Apps

  • Click the 'Settings' cog.
  • Click the 'Approved Apps' tab.
  • Enable approved apps setting.
  • Launch the application(s) that should be added to the whitelist.
  • Select relevant applications.


There may be cases in which an application will not show up in this list:

  • Xbox GamePass and other UWP apps from the Microsoft Store don't show in the list currently. If you plan to host those, you will need to turn off Approved Apps
  • Steam is intentionally blocked from showing in the list to avoid people from putting their account on risk, as people would be able to buy games and do other unwanted stuff. You should run a game and add the game itself to the approved apps list, not Steam
  • For anything else, Parsec may actually be lacking some permissions. You can check if the Parsec service is running correctly.

What do connected people see?

Whenever the host or a guest switches to any application that isn't approved, the entire screen will freeze for the guests and they will be unable to control anything. This is especially useful to prevent guests from doing unwanted stuff if you manually gave them keyboard and mouse permission.

Note, however, that whenever one of the approved apps are the active window, Parsec will display the entire screen. If your approved app isn't in fullscreen mode, keep in mind that people can still see everything else in the screen. The guests can also see overlays (like Steam's) in that approved application.

  • If your approved app is in windowed, the guests will still be able to see everything around it, like the image below.


  • If the app is in fullscreen, then only the app will be shown to the people connected.


  • If you minimize the app, close it, or an application that is not on the whitelist has focus, the screen will freeze and say "The host is doing something else right now. Please wait a moment!".


  • If your app has an overlay, like Steam's in-game overlay, keep in mind that Parsec will still show it.