Cygwin X-Launcher.


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Content of this webpage:

Frequently asked questions (overview)...


Frequently asked questions (answers)...

  • Can I rename a pre-defintion?
    Yes, you can. Simply select the pre-definition you would like to rename. Set a new name for the pre-definition and click on "Save pre-defintion as". Select the other (previous) pre-defintion again and click on "Delete pre-definition".
  • Can I create pre-defintion on the basis of another?
    Yes, you can. Simply select the pre-definition you would like to use as source. Set a new name for the pre-definition and click on "Save pre-defintion as". You now have a copy of the source pre-definition which you can change as desired.
  • Can I automise the startup of a pre-defintion?
    Yes, you can. Please run CXL with the command-line option "/?" to see all possibilities (via command-line) on how to startup fully automised.
  • What is the basic concept of CXL?
    The concept can be described as following:
    • collect the settings made via the GUI
    • process settings, verify possibilty to launch pre-definition (configuration)
    • create and compile a batch-file (in the local temporary folder) which starts the local X-server (e.g. Xwin/Xwin_GL)
    • (optional:) verify launch and connectivity of the X-server
    • create another batch file with command to startup the shell
    Please note that in shell-mode the first batch-file creation is ommited. In XDMCP-mode the X-server starts as required and no second batch-file is created (as this is not required in XDMCP mode).
  • Why does my firewall detect an incoming connect?
    This applies if the feature to search for hosts willing to operate as XDMCP server. In that case CXL queries a specific hosts (or a group of hosts via a broadcast address) for the XDMCP service enabled (the remote port is 177 at default, the XDMCP port). If host is willing to operate as XDMCP server it will return an answer back to CXL. The remote source port will be 177, too. Please not that several remote hosts might answer this query depending on how many servers are willing to operate XDMCP if a broadcast query is done.
  • Why does my firewall detect an outgoing connect?
    This applies if the feature to detect a running X-server is enabled. In that case CXL tries periodically to connect to the local host at port 6000 (the X11 protocol port) to verify that a connection can be established. If so, the local X-server is assumed to be running. Please note that such a connection is to localhost only and should therefore be of no concern. Once a connection has be established, CXL will stop this activity.
    Please note that this also applies to the feature stated above (XDMCP query) but the default port is 177 then.
  • Is it possible to use a different X-server?
    There are basically two possibilities how to use a different X-server:
    • You startup a different X-server and use CXL in "shell mode":
      To do so startup the other X-server with a desired configuration. Use the "shell" command in CXL to only start (another) shell. This will use the Cygwin tools only for presenting a shell and/or connecting to a remote host. Please note this XDMCP is not supported by CXL in that case.
    • You startup a (different(modified) variant of XWin:
      If you want to run a variant of the Cygwin/X-server, such as Xwing ( or Xmins ( that supports the Cygwin/X interface, then follow these steps:
      • Add the path to the alternative Xwin executable to the top of your PATH configuration in CXL. Use the /cygdrive/(...) syntax to access directories outside your Cygwin installation (supported starting from v1.25).
      • Make sure that an executable named "Xwin.exe" or "Xwin.bat" exists in this path since CXL searches and uses this executable at runtime (I simply created a Xwin.bat pointing to Xming.exe providing a parameter list).
        Such a file could look like:
        @echo off
        Xming.exe %*
        Note the important "%*" notifier to provide XMing.exe with all command-line parameters passed by CXL.
      • Run CXL as desired. CXL will make use of the first Xwin.exe available in the PATH environment as setup.
  • Is it possible to use a different rsh/ssh executable?
    Do the same steps as described above for the use of a different X-server.
  • How big is the source code of CXL?
    CXL currently (within the v1.25'er branch) consists of about 12.300 LOC. These are 9 forms, 5 classes and 18 modules. There are about 280 controls and about 530 procedures/functions implemented.
  • Can I obtain the source code of CXL?
    CXL is neither an Open Source project nor I have plans to release the source code in the near future.
  • I get a "Fatal internal error 429" when trying to run CXL.
    You might not have installed "Microsoft Windows Script" (which is part of any Win98+ and Win2000+ OS). You can download this package for free at:
    (In current versions this error is handled appropriate.)
  • When will you release the next version?
    I don't know. A new release is done when it's done. It mostly depends on the complexity of new features that shall be implemented.
  • You did say you would implement feature xxx in version y.yy, but you didn't. Don't you like me?
    Saying that a feature might be implemented in a "version y.yy" is not a promise. If I think that other features are more important (e.g. because they're more often requested) I might change the schedule a little. Furthermore I try to keep changes in a small area when implementing (changing) features. This keeps the error-rate low.
  • Why are you programming in VB6?
    Because this is the only programming language I do have a license for. For this tool I guess it's a good choice as well. It keeps programming stuff (more or less) simple but does not slow down development.
  • Will you port CXL to programming language yyy?
    Not at the moment. I did already a small port to .NET, but it's just a first step. It should not take long but I simply don't have enough time to do so. However - new parts are already being designed to be .NET compatible.
  • Why are you doing all this for free? Are you stupid?
    No, I'm not (at least not officially...;-). I'm doing this because:
    • I like the idea of freeware. If I need software I (first of all) check the freeware-market. There's a lot of good freeware to find on the internet so I wanted to make a contribution.
    • It's mostly fun. I don't think I could earn much money with it.
    • I'm trying to improve my programming skills and collect knowledge. I believe in some kind of "programming art".
    • Most interesting for me is the source code. I'm collecting experiences in (e.g.) well-formatted, easy to understand code, building code-libraries, getting deeper into ways of reuse and Windows-API etc...
  • Why don't you answer my Email (quickly)?
    Especially since I published Mortens Cygwin X-Launcher on for free I get a lot of requests and reports which I will always try to answer as quickly as possible. But it may delay a little. I'm currently working on my PhD and this is always more important. Please understand.
  • Can I help?
    A good help would be if you report bugs, say what you like/dislike, make suggestions how to improve CXL or simply "play" with it.
  • Why do you grant commercial use/redistribution only on request?
    This is to keep track where (around the world) and how often my software is used. Of course this information is for me only and will not be passed on somebody else.

Final words...


I would like to thank all people that help(ed) me out developing CXL. I have learned a lot through this project about *nix, X11, rsh/ssh, XDMCP and other related stuff. Also I would like to thank people that supported me in development with suggestions and/or meaningful hints.
Last but not least I would like to thank the team of Cygwin and Cygwin/X itself which does really a great job!
I am getting a lot of requests/questions about features that I am always trying to answer asap. Hence this sometimes may take a while.
Thanks for your patience.

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