Install X2Go

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x2Go enables you to access a remote machine over SSH. The wiki entry provides the following overview:

"X2Go enables you to access a graphical desktop of a computer over a low bandwidth (or high bandwidth) connection. X2Go is a Remote Desktop solution, which some vendors vaguely call Remote Control. This is not to be confused with Microsoft Remote Desktop Connection, which is a competing Remote Desktop solution and protocol. With X2Go, you mainly access Linux computers. The Linux computer you are accessing is the X2Go Server. (There are ways to connect to a Windows computer as well; some of them are only available with the Linux X2Go Client.)"

Ref: X2Go wiki


A SSH connection requires a minimum of two machines. In this example the assumption is the remote machine is more powerful than the local client.

  • Remote Server/Host running openssh-server
  • Local Client capable of connecting to the Remote Server
  • Valid credentials to connect to the remote server

NOTE: To install OpenSSH on the Remote Server

1sudo apt install -y openssh-server

Install the Remote Server Configuration

Login to the remote server and perform the following actions:

  • Update packages
  • Install x2goserver
  1. Update the host
1sudo apt update
  1. Install the X2Goserver packages
1sudo apt install x2goserver x2goserver-xsession

Optional: Install a Remote Desktop Environment

If you intend to connect to the desktop, add a lightweight desktop may be appropriate. My preference is to not waste bandwidth by connecting to the desktop.

  • Install minimal desktop e.g. xfce
  • Select lightdm
  1. Install the minimal desktop
1sudo apt-get install xubuntu-core

Install the Client Configuration

On the local host perform the following actions

  1. Install the x2goclient package
1sudo apt install x2goclient
  1. To run the client and connect to the remote host
  1. Test SSH connectivity between the client and remote server

From the local client, connect to the remote server (x.x.x.x)

1ssh [USER]@x.x.x.x

Connection should be sucessful. Exit the SSH session.

Remote Host: Desktop Example

Setting up a remote connection requires some information

  • Host: IP of the remote host
  • Login: SSH user
  • SSH Port: 22
  • Select the RSA/DSA key
  • Session Type: XFCE

NOTE: The session type is based on the available config. XFCE Desktop configuration was installed earlier, however it is also possible to connect other desktop type.

An example configuration should look similar to the following:

X2Go Ubuntu desktop example:inline

NOTE: In the above configuration the application icon has been amended. To replicate this effect

  • Search and download the appropriate application icon
  • Click the icon next to the text << change icon
  • Amend the X2Go app icon e.g. Ubuntu, Debian, Windows, etc

At this stage amend the session details as required (i.e. connection speed, display, sound etc)

Remote Host: Single Application Example

An alternative to showing the desktop is to just display a running program. To achieve this amend the Session type configuration to single application.

An example configuration should look similar to the following:

X2Go Single Application Android-Studio example:inline

The key is adding the appropriate path and executable. Amend the session details as required (i.e. connection speed, display, sound etc).

Application Example X2Go Path
Android Studio /snap/bin/android-studio
Tor /opt/tor-browser_en-US/Browser/start-tor-browser
Chrome /usr/bin/google-chrome-stable

Android Studio - Flutter/Dart Settings

  1. Dart SDK Path:
  1. Flutter SDK Path:

When the application is run, only the application is displayed. The desktop is not shown in this configuration which may be preferable dependent on your situation.