Connecting to an AIX VM with X Windows

Some AIX software is optimized for installation from a graphical user interface (GUI). If you need an AIX GUI, you can enable a Skytap AIX VM as an X11 client over an SSH published service and connect to it using an X Windows GUI.

X Windows on an AIX VM requires a minor configuration change to the AIX VM, as well as the installation of an X11 server and SSH client on your local computer.

Contents

Configure the AIX VM

Add a published service to the VM to enable an SSH connection, and enable X11 forwarding in the AIX VM OS settings.

To add a published service to the AIX VM
  1. Follow the steps in Adding a published service to a VM.
  2. In the By name menu, choose SSH Server (port 22). SSH published service
  3. Note the host name and port number of the published service. SSH port

    In this example, host name is skytap@services-uswest.skytap.com, port number is 24991.

Enable X11 forwarding in AIX

To enable X11 forwarding in the AIX VM OS settings
  1. With the AIX VM running, open an SRA client Secure Remote Access client – A browser access client that provides quick access to Skytap virtual machine desktops. To learn more, see Accessing VMs with your browser. .
  2. Within the SRA client view of the AIX VM, edit /etc/ssh/sshd_config.
  3. Uncomment X11Forwarding and set it to yes.
  4. Restart the VM.

Configure your local computer

Your local computer needs to have an X Windows server installed. If you’re using Windows or macOS, install an X Windows server. If you’re using Windows, you also need to install an SSH client.

If you’re using a macOS local computer, use the built-in Terminal.

Download and install an X Windows server on your local computer

There are many X Windows servers available for Windows and macOS. This example uses the following open-source servers:

  • Windows – Download VcXsrv
  • macOS – Download and install XQuartz

Install and configure an SSH client on your local Windows computer

  • Windows – Download and install PuTTY.

Enable X11 forwarding on the local computer

To enable X11 forwarding in PuTTY
  • Click Connection > SSH > X11. Check the box next to Enable X11 forwarding. PuTTY configuration
To enable X11 forwarding in macOS
  1. Edit /etc/ssh/sshd_config.
  2. Uncomment X11Forwarding and set it to yes.

Connect to the AIX VM

To connect to the AIX VM from your local computer
  1. Start the local X Windows server (VcXsrv or XQuartz).
  2. Start an SSH connection to the AIX VM.

    • In PuTTY:
      1. Click Session.
      2. in the Host Name (or IP address) field, type the host name and port that you noted when you set up the published service. PuTTY session
      3. Click Open to start an SSH session with the AIX VM.
      4. In the PuTTY terminal window, sign in to the AIX VM.
      5. Type startx to start X Windows.
    • In macOS Terminal:
      1. Type ssh -Y -p <port_number> <username>@<hostname>.

        For example: ssh -Y -p 24991 skytap@services-uswest.skytap.com.

      2. Sign in to the AIX VM.
      3. Type startx to start X Windows.