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Installing Xming X11 on Windows


Xming provides a minimalist yet functional X11 server for use in a Windows environment. This allows users to utilize graphical applications on a remote *nix workstation without the need for large amounts of hard drive space.

For more information, please visit Xming.


Download and run the current setup executable available at the SourceForge page for Xming. You will see the following intro screen. Click [Next].

Installation Step 1

The default installation location is recommended. Click [Next].

Installation Step 2

The following installation components should be fine for most users. If you are using a non-US keyboard, make sure that option is checked. Also, we recommend installing PuTTY separately. Click [Next].

Installation Step 3

The Start Menu folder is simply the name of the sub directory under which your Xming shortcuts will be located. The default value should be fine. Click [Next].

Installation Step 4

Additional tasks include creating shortcuts in various locations to make the Xming server easier to access. The following option set is reasonable. XLaunch provides a graphical launcher with easy access to more advanced features of Xming. Most users will not need to use these advanced features and can leave the XLaunch options unchecked (the shortcuts will still exist in the Start Menu). Click [Next].

Installation Step 5

The installer will verify the settings. The one to be certain to verify is the destination location. Using any installation directory other than the default will make font installation and use slightly more complicated. Click [Install].

Installation Step 6

Following a brief installation status screen, you should see the following dialog indicating successful installation of Xming. You are now equipped to view X11-based graphical applications remotely. Click [Finish].

Installation Step 7

Installing Additional Fonts

It is highly recommended to install the additional fonts package for Xming. The installation process is identical to that above, with the exception of the "Select Components" phase. Simply make sure to select all available fonts as shown below.

Installation Step 8

For the fonts package, make sure the installation directory matches that of Xming itself (this should be "C:\Program Files\Xming" unless you changed this location in the Xming installation process). **NOTE: There may be an error alert that the installation already exists. If this happens, simply select "OK" or "Continue"

You should now have an Xming icon on your desktop. Double-clicking this will start the X11 server and allow you to use X11:

Desktop Icon

When the X11 server is running, you will see an "X" icon in your taskbar (near your clock). If you see this, you are ready to use X11-based applications.

Taskbar Icon

Configure X11 Forwarding in SSH Clients


In the PuTTY configuration window, select "Connection->SSH->X11" and make sure the "Enable X11 forwarding box is checked, then return to the Session category and click [Open] when you are ready to connect to the specified machine:

Putty X11 Forwarding

For information on installing PuTTY SSH, please visit our how-to page. Secure Shell Client

Select the menu option "Edit->Settings" as shown below:

Putty X11 Forwarding

Select the option "Profile Settings->Connection->Tunneling" and make sure the "Tunnel X11 connections" box is checked, then click [OK]. This should then be set for future uses of SSH Secure Shell Client.

Putty X11 Forwarding

Cygwin SSH

To connect using Cygwin's SSH client in the Cygwin Bash shell, simply issue the following command, exchanging <hostname> for the machine you are trying to access:

ssh -Y <hostname>