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Version 1 (modified by Antoine Martin, 8 years ago) (diff)



Here are just some of the most common usage scenarios.

Simple session/application forwarding

As per the home page "get started" instructions, this is how xpra is most often used:

  • on the server which will export the application (xterm in the example), start an xpra server instance on a free display of your choice ({{{:100 in the example):
    xpra start :100 --start-child=xterm
  • then from the client, just connect to this xpra instance:

{{ xpra attach ssh:SERVERHOST:100 }}} (replace SERVERHOST with the hostname or IP of the server)

Access without SSH

SSH is great, it provides for secure authentication and encryption, it is available on all platforms and is well tested.
However, in some cases, you may not want to give remote users shell access, or you may want to share sessions between multiple remote users.
In this case, use TCP sockets:

xpra start :100 --start-child=xterm --bind-tcp=

Then, assuming that the port you have chosen (10000 in the example above) is allowed through the firewall (if any), you can connect from the client using:

xpra attach tcp:SERVERHOST:10000

Forwarding a whole desktop

Xpra normally forwards just the windows of the application you are interested in. If you want to forward a full desktop instead (including its start menu, background, task bar, etc...) use a nested X11 server:

xpra start --start-child="Xephyr :200 -ac -screen 800x600" :100
DISPLAY=:200 fluxbox&


  • you can start a window manager of your choice (here fluxbox) or none at all..
  • beware: some desktop environments may show options to shutdown/reboot the system from their start menu, which may or may not be appropriate
  • you can resize the desktop using the standard "randr" desktop tools (and not by resizing the window at present)

More unusual setups