1.) the keyboard layout does not map correctly from my vnc client to the vnc server. When I type 'asdf', I get 'abfh' I've tried to find a solution via Google... no luck yet. Hopefully someone has seen and resolved this before?
I had that issue too... weird thing, but an easy fix. See this web page:http://blog.yclian.com/2007/12/3-solutions-to-gnomevnc-keyboard.html
Bottom line, this is the easiest solution--just execute this from the command line:
# gconftool --set /desktop/gnome/peripherals/keyboard/kbd/layouts --type List --list-type String [aa]