Dec 242011

For those who work on multiple Linux/Unix machines, we sometimes need to do work remotely. Sometimes the terminal doesn’t cut it, and we need to use a GUI application. There are a number of ways to view a GUI on a remote machine, but one way is by X11 forwarding through an SSH connection.

One problem with X11 forwarding, especially over the internet, is the slow speed. This post hopes to explain X11 forwarding, and ways to speed it up.

You can use the command:
ssh -c arcfour,blowfish-cbc -X -C user@
To establish an SSH session with X11 forwarding enabled. Then all you need to do is launch a X program and it should appear on your local display. Before I explain the command, you must first have X11 forwarding enabled in your sshd_config on your server. Set X11Forwarding yes in your config file.

Now, for the SSH command:

  • -c arcfour,blowfish-cbc : specifies the encryption algorithms to use. These seem to be some of the fastest.
  • -X : This enables X11 Forwarding
  • -C : This enables compression
  • user@ : This is the user name of the remote machine, and the IP address of that server.

  One Response to “Speed Up X11 Forwarding”

  1. I have used this command, but it doesn’t resolved my problem at expected level.
    I am trying to access my one of the development product which has huge configurations over the linux server. Whereas I am accessing it from my client Desktop by using X11 Forwarding option for its GUI development. What could be the another option to resolve the same or Does this required more bandwidth rate over network?

    Please suggest on the same.!


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