Getting X going using Win32
rasjidw at bigpond.com
Sat Dec 29 23:03:07 EST 2001
On Sat, 29 Dec 2001 16:54, Donovan J. Edye wrote:
> I am following the instructions detailed in APC Issue 277 Jan 2002 article
> Windows Onto Linux. I have downloaded and installed WinAxe and have
> logged in to my Linux box with the same username and password I use on my
> Win2K box. I have exported the Display variable as detailed but when I type
> the following at the linux box shell prompt I get:
> donovan at moe:~$ export DISPLAY=192.168.42.10
try $ export DISPLAY=192.168.42.10:0
You almost certainly need a display number!
> donovan at moe:~$ gnome-terminal
> Gtk-WARNING **: cannot open display: 192.168.42.10
> My setup is as follows:
> Linux Box:
> Win2K Box:
> WinAxe running as described in article
> Anybody got some pointers for me?
I have not used WinAxe, but I have used XWin-32 and from memory you need to
tell it the hosts to 'trust', ie, the hosts that is allows X connections
from. On Linux the equivalent command is xhost, and I think it is called the
same under XWin-32. Look for something similar on WinAxe, although perhaps
WinAxe will accept connections without this.
Alternately, you could use one of the free and open source options, all of
which were somehow 'overlooked' by APC.
The free options are:
A port of XFree86 to Windows using the cygwin library. This works quite
well. There are a couple of spin-off projects (including my own) that just
do remote display (XDMCP etc).
Win32 X11 project: http://sources.redhat.com/win32-x11/
A port of XFree86 to Windows without using the cygwin library. I have tried
this, and I got the XServer up and running, but it died when I actually tried
to display a KDE desktop on it. Cygwin-XFree is more mature and under more
This is not really X at all, but uses its own protocol and its own clients.
It does however have it own advantages.
a) It is extremely mature.
b) It allows the displaying of Windows onto Linux (contrary to APC's
statement that 'it's a pity the reverse isn't also possible) as well as Linux
c) When run as a virtual X-server on Linux, you can kill client connections
without losing the X-server, so you can re-connect (even from a different
machine) and all your programs are still there and running.
There are other advantages as well.
IMHO, its main disadvantage is its startup / logon / authentication process.
There are several different versions, including TightVNC for using over slow
networks, and there was TridaVNC (a commercially suported version) but is
seems to have disappeared.
There are also two projects (that I know of) that aim to provide easy to use
and install pre-packaged versions of at least parts of the above options.
There is WinFree86, http://sourceforge.net/projects/winfree86/, which has not
released any files yet, although when I last emailed the developer, he was
planning on doing some work on it over the holiday period. It will be based
There is also my own project, which is really nothing but a cut down version
of Cygwin-XFree86 (no modifications to any of the binaries). See
http://lasp.sourceforge.net/winxterm/ for details of the part about using
XDMCP. However, I've taken down the binaries due to complaints by some of
the Cygwin-XFree people. You can get the directly from
Alternately you can wait 3-4 weeks for the alpha of a GUI installer and
frontend I'm writing for the Cygwin-XFree86 port, which should remove most of
the difficulties and eventally make it as straight forward as installing any
other Windows application, but allow me to not host any cygwin-xfree
binaries, and thus keep the cygwin-xfree people happy.
I'm been meaning to write to APC and point out some of their oversights and
inaccuracies. Cygwin-XFree86 is the 5th Google entry on "free x server
windows 98" and the first entry on "open source x server windows 98", so I
think there is little excuse for not at least picking up that one.
I hope this is of some help.
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