In order to run graphical Linux programs on your Windows desktop, BCF supports Hummingbird Exceed, which provides an X server on your Windows host.
- Click on the link and choose Open to install Open Text Exceed 14 from the software install pages.
- Choose "Install Exceed"
- Choose a personal installation.
- Choose English.
- Click Next, then accept the license agreement.
- Enter your name and organization, and install the product
for "Anyone who uses this computer".
- Accept the default destination folder.
- Choose "Per user directory".
- Choose the "Typical installation".
- Deselect both options on the next page.
- Click next to install Exceed.
- Restart your computer if prompted to do so by the Exceed setup. Do not skip this, this will result in an error later.
- Make sure that you have PuTTY installed on your machine. If you do
you will have an entry in your start menu. Note that all recent PCs
as delivered by BCF will have PuTTY installed.
If you do not have PuTTY installed, please install it first using putty‑X.XX‑installer.exe on the PuTTY Download Page. Make sure to accept the default location for the installation folder or the BCF tools will not work.
- Lastly, install the correct version of the BCF connection software:
There are two different methods of using Exceed. Choose one based on your preference:
Remote desktop. This is analogous to the Windows Remote Desktop feature, it emulates a Linux login in an Exceed window.
- Click on the BCF Linux Login (Desktop) shortcut.
- The following batch window will open
Enter your username at the first prompt. Enter the hostname of the target machine at the second prompt, leaving out the .win.tue.nl part.
- If this is the first time connecting to the target machine,
you will be warned that the machine is unknown. Enter yes
(not y) to continue connecting.
- Lastly, enter your password.
- Your default desktop will start up in your Exceed window now.
Do not close the SSH batch window. It is necessary to maintain a secure connection to the target machine. It should disappear automatically once you close Exceed.
Passive mode. This mode allows you to execute remote graphical commands from a standard SSH session.
- Click on the BCF Linux Login (Passive) shortcut.
- Both Exceed and a standard PuTTY session should start.
- Login just as you would using PuTTY without Exceed.
- You should now be able to start graphical Linux programs from your shell.
Note that simply starting another PuTTY shell is not guaranteed to work. You need to turn on Enable X11 forwarding in the configuration of your PuTTY profile before this works.
After logging in for the first time, you can check that the tunneling is working by executing:
$ echo $DISPLAY
If this variable appears to be undefined, do not define it manually but go back to the tunnel settings.
Possible first time warning
Note that the first time that you start Exceed, Windows may warn you
that it is trying to let other machines access your computer through the
Please make sure to choose Unblock, otherwise Exceed will not work.
Infrequently Asked Questions
- Exceed only shows a window with a gray background, and the batch window disappears immediately?
- Please make sure that the SSH command line tools are located somewhere in your path. Choose Start -> Run, and enter cmd. Enter ssh2 in the resulting window. If this results in an error message about the command not being found, please restart your PC to make sure all the settings are ok.
- How can I make Exceed take over the whole screen?
- This question mostly applies to desktop mode. You can edit the X server settings by opening C:\Program Files\BCF\BCF Exceed\sshdesktop.xcfg. Choose Display and Video, and then check the box before Full Screen, just below Root Size.
- How do I configure Exceed without the BCF shortcuts?
- Make sure to do the following:
- Choose No Host Access in the Security settings
- If you want to use mathematica, uncheck Enable Server Reset in Display and Video, Common Settings. With enable server reset, the mathematica-starter script will not be able to add the neccessary fonts in passive mode (see below).