[Chimera-users] Server and Client machines with different OS

David Konerding dakoner at gmail.com
Wed Nov 28 10:23:58 PST 2007

On Nov 28, 2007 8:59 AM, Tom Goddard <goddard at cgl.ucsf.edu> wrote:
> Hi Isabelle,
>   I have not tried to run Chimera on Linux with display on Windows.  It
> may be possible by installing an X server on Windows such as Xming, or
> by using a remote desktop display program.  Both of these solutions may
> fail because they do not correctly mirror the OpenGL 3-d graphics.  For
> example, using the remote desktop display program VNC does no work for
> this reason.  I expect it will be difficult to find a method that works.


VNC has embedded a Mesa GLX Indirect OpenGL rendered in the server for
some time now.
So you can definite run a VNC server on a Linux box and connect it
with vncviewer/tightvnc/realvnc client from Windows.
All the rendering is done in software, which can be slow.

Also, the X server on Linux (Xorg) embeds VNC protocol.  You can
connect to a running X server with VNCclient and see what
is going on on the screen.  This doesn't really work for OpenGL,
although if you move the mouse over the OpenGL window, it will
do readback and you will see some stuff; it just doesn't work when the
OpenGL display changes.

As another user pointed out, some X servers for Windows support GLX so
they can do remote indirect rendering.
Depending on what kind of OpenGL calls you use this can be quite fast.

Finally, there is a really nice solution I have experimented with.
This is called 'VirtualGL'.  VirtualGL acts a shim which catches all
the X11 and OpenGL calls, renders them on the server using the
graphics card, then ships them over to the client using compressed
image formats.
You can connect with TurboVNC or VirtualGL clients.  I have used this
and the rendering performance is pretty impressive.


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