/ Linux Reviews / XFree configuration / Linux XDMCP HOWTO - en


Thomas Chao


Revision History
Revision v1.32 January 2003
Adding info for Red Hat 7.3 & 8.0, Mandrake 8.2 & 9.0, SuSE Linux configuration and contents update.
Revision v1.215 March 2002
Adding more info for Red Hat 7.2, Mandrake 8.1 and Slackware 8.0 Linux configuration and SSH X11 Forwarding.
Revision v1.120 March 2001
Revision and adding RH 7.0.
Revision v1.001 November 2000
Initial revision and release.

This HOWTO describes how you can use the combination of X Display Manager (xdm, kdm and gdm) and XDMCP (X Display Manager Control Protocol) to provide a solution for the X-Terminal and to provide a platform of efficient Remote X Apps environment. This document will takes the focus on how to setup the X connection using XDMCP.

1. Introduction

XDMCP stands for "X Display Manager Control Protocol" and is a network protocol. It provides a way of running the X-Terminal to run on your PC (or MAC) and it uses the X Server to provide a client/server interface between display hardware (the mouse, keyboard, and video displays) and the desktop environment while also providing both the windowing infrastructure and a standardized application interface (quoted from XFree86 Project home page). The X-Terminal can be displayed with an individual window or multiple windows, based on your X window system's software capabilities and setup.

I am always looking for the best way to use Linux, both at home and in work. One of the biggest advantages among all is the ability to re-use the old systems (like 486 and Pentium, Pentium II CPUs) as a Xterminal (by using the Win32 apps; like Hummingbird's Exceed, Reflection X, X-Win32 or X-ThinPro. For MAC, try eXodus) to run from any of your PC remotely. I found out, somehow very surprising, that there are many documents on the INTERNET that can help you to set it up, but not with a step by step HOW-TO format! This is how I came up with this document as a way to share my experiences with all users. By using X and XDMCP, you can build a good, reliable and not expansive X- environment for your home or work IT solution.

1.1. Disclaimer

No liability for the contents of this documents can be accepted. Use the concepts, examples and other content at your own risk. As this is a new edition of this document, there may be errors and inaccuracies, that may of course be damaging to your system. Proceed with caution, and although this is highly unlikely, the author(s) do not take any responsibility for that.

All copyrights are held by their by their respective owners, unless specifically noted otherwise. Use of a term in this document should not be regarded as affecting the validity of any trademark or service mark.

Naming of particular products or brands should not be seen as endorsements.

You are strongly recommended to take a backup of your system before major installation and backups at regular intervals.

1.2. Feedback

Feedback is most certainly welcome for this document. Without your submissions and input, this document wouldn't exist. Please send your additions, comments and criticisms to the following email address : .

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