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Running coLinux

The notes here give some guidelines as to how you can go about things. You can use coLinux however you like (it's open source software!), but we'll show you some common/recommended procedures.


To avoid errors during initialization, the following coLinux startup order is recommended:

  1. Start Xming
  2. Start coLinux (use the shortcut in the start menu)
  3. Log in via putty (use the shortcuts in the start menu, see accounts for log in information)
  4. Develop like in a normal distribution!


When you are ready to end your coLinux session, in super user mode, type shutdown -h now. You can do this by logging in as root or by adding sudo before the command (so you run sudo shutdown -h now). You could also use the halt command if you like.

If you close the daemon console window, this will also initiate a shutdown. The shutdown process is not immediate, so do not forcibly terminate the process. Just wait a little for it to exit.

These shut down steps will allow coLinux to start up cleanly the next time without needing to check all of its disks.


The Xming package can be used as an XWindows display for coLinux. The system comes with an installer and is relatively easy to set up.

You have to install the 75dpi and 100dpi fonts as well.

If you wish to use GUI programs with coLinux, you first need to run the Xming server.

However, before you even do that, you will need to tell the server to allow connections from coLinux. Simply edit the file C:\Program Files\Xming\X0.hosts and add coLinux's IP address ( by default) to the list. Obviously the path to X0.hosts will differ if you installed Xming somewhere else, as will the IP address if you set things up differently.

Now you should be able to launch the server through the Start Menu → Programs → Xming → Xming shortcut. For people who decided to not install the shortcuts, it is simply running:

Xming.exe :0 -clipboard -multiwindow

Finally, under coLinux, set your DISPLAY to the Xming server. You may want to add this to your shell's login file (typically ~/.profile).

$ export DISPLAY=

You can test with a simple app such as xterm or xeyes. Once things work, you can launch any GUI app this way and interact with it from your desktop like any other Windows program. Keep in mind though that when accessing paths in the app, it will be running inside of coLinux, so don't expect to browse your C:\ drive.