X11 Forwarding to Your PC

X forwarding allows a user to run UNIX and Linux graphical applications remotely. In order to do this, you need a SSH client that supports X forwarding, such as MobaXterm or PuTTY, click here to learn more about SSH and PuTTY.

MobaXterm Configuration

  1. Download MobaXterm from http://mobaxterm.mobatek.net/download-home-edition.html the installer or portable versions both work.
  2. Open MobaXterm.
  3. Click the Session button in the top left corner.
  4. Click the SSH button in the top left corner.
  5. In the Remote Host field, type scully.egr.msu.edu
  6. Optionally click the checkbox for Specify username and enter your engineering username.
  7. Click the green check mark button labeled OK.
  8. Enter your password.
  9. If a SFTP or SCP browser dialog appears you can type in your password to use SFTP or cancel to just use SSH.

To reconnect just double click on scully.egr.msu.edu under saved sessions on the right hand panel.

PuTTY Configuration

  1. Open PuTTY and type scully.egr.msu.edu for the host name.
    Screen image of PuTTY Configuration
  2. Choose Tunnels, which is located under Connection and then SSH on the left hand side. Then click the Enable X11 forwarding checkbox.
    Screen image of PuTTY Configuration and X11 forwarding box
  3. To save these settings, go back to the original screen by clicking on the Session item on the left. Under Saved Sessions type in a name and then click Save. These settings are now saved, and can be reused the next time you use PuTTY by choosing the name you saved it under and clicking Load after opening PuTTY.
    Screen image of PuTTY configuration with X11 forwarding
  4. When you are ready to connect, click on the Open button.

IMPORTANT: Do NOT run long jobs or cpu-heavy jobs on scully. If you have a long running or cpu-intensive job, connect to scully, SSH to a compute server and include the '-Y' option. The specific command to make X forwarding is:

ssh hostname -Y

Read more about DECS compute servers here.

How to Set Up the X server


  1. Start Xming by selecting Xming from the start menu: Start > All Programs > Xming > Xming
  2. Start PuTTY and configure as shown above.


Installing Xming

Xming is installed on all of the engineering computer labs, but it can also be used from home.

  1. Download the Xming package and the Xming-fonts package from http://sourceforge.net/projects/xming.
  2. Install Xming using the default settings.
  3. Install Xming-fonts using the default settings.