Connecting to SSCC Linux Computers using X-Win32

X-Win32 is the SSCC's suggested Linux client for Windows PCs. To install X-Win32, first download it from the SSCC web server. You'll need to give your SSCC user name and password, as X-Win32 is only licensed for UW faculty, staff, and students. Save the file in a convenient location, and then double-click on it. It will install and configure itself. The first time you run X-Win32 you will probably get two messages saying that the Windows Firewall has blocked features of the program. Click Allow Access for both of them so that X-Win32 can function properly.

If you are not on the UW-Madison campus you must establish a VPN connection to campus before using X-Win32. Connecting to the SSCC Network via VPN has instructions.

By default, when you start X-Win32 it also starts its configuration program, X-Config. The SSCC's X-Win32 installation program sets up a connection to Linstat for you, so unless you need to connect to other servers you don't need to run X-Config. Feel free to uncheck the box Display On Startup near the bottom and then close X-Config.

X-Win32 can be a bit confusing because it doesn't log you into anything when it starts. It merely places an icon that looks like a blue and white 'X' with a monitor down in the lower-right corner of your screen:

The X-Win32 Icon

Occasionally Windows will hide this icon. If it does, click on the upward pointing triangle to see hidden icons and then drag X-Win32's icon out of the hidden area.

To log into a server, click once on the icon and choose a session. If you double-click on the icon you'll get X-Config instead. As your session begins you'll note a status window that describes what X-Win32 is doing as it connects to the server. Feel free to check Close this dialog when command completes or just close the window once your session starts.

Setting up New Sessions

If you need to connect to a particular Linstat server (most likely to monitor a job you started previously—see Using Linstat) or if you want to connect to some other server, you'll need to set up a new session. This is easy to do:

  1. Double click on the X-Win32 icon to start X-Config program. Click the Wizard button under New Session.

    X-Config

  2. Give the session a Name (for your own purposes—the computer doesn't care what it is). Choose StarNet SSH as the Type. Then click Next.

    Creating your session

  3. Give the address of the server you want to connect to and click Next. The four Linstat servers are linstat1.ssc.wisc.edu, linstat2.ssc.wisc.edu, linstat3.ssc.wisc.edu, and linstat4.ssc.wisc.edu.

    Server address

  4. Type in your username and password. Click Next.

    User name and password

  5. The next screen allows you to choose which terminal program to run. Our suggestion is that you use the GNOME terminal, and that is what the pre-defined sessions use. To use it type gnome-terminal in the Command box.

    Choosing GNOME as your terminal program

    However, if you prefer xterm, just click on Linux and X-Win32 will enter it for you automatically.

    Choosing the xterm terminal program

  6. Click Finish, and your session will be ready for use.

Last Revised: 12/4/2013