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Remote Access


Faculty, staff, and graduate TAs can access their office computers via Remote Desktop; commonly referred to as RDP or RDC. In Windows Vista and Windows 7, RDP is located in the Start Menu under All Program ⇒ Accessories ⇒ Remote Desktop Connection. RDP clients are also available for Linux and Mac OS.

Users will need to know the name of their office computer in order to connect to it via RDP. The computer name may be determined by right-clicking on "My Computer" and selecting "Properties". The full computer name will be listed at the bottom of the properties window. When prompted for login credentials, users should include the string CSE\ at the beginning of their username, and use their Windows password.

A Note for Windows Users: Tighter security settings in Windows Vista and Windows 7 may interfere with RDP connections to CSE computers. If you have trouble connecting to your office computer from a computer outside the CSE Instructional Network running Windows Vista or Windows 7, please check your Local Security Policy. From Control Panel, choose Administrative Tools ⇒ Local Security Policy. From there, open Computer Configuration ⇒ Windows Settings ⇒ Security Settings ⇒ Local Policies ⇒ Security Options. Then, ensure that "Network Security: LAN Management" is set to "Send LM & NTLM — use NTLMv2 session security if negotiated".


The CSE Computing Staff maintain a firewall which only permits encrypted traffic from outside the CSE Instructional Network. In order to connect to the CSE UNIX environment, users must use encrypted protocols like ssh.

UNIX/Linux and Mac users may connect by opening a Terminal window and typing

ssh -X   

where servername is faclinux for faculty and staff and stdlinux for students. The -X switch is optional and will enable X11 forwarding, allowing windows for graphical applications such as XEmacs to be displayed on the client machine. An X11 server will need to be running on the client machine for this to work. An X11 server for Mac OS is available here. X11 software is included with most UNIX/Linux distributions, or can be downloaded with the appropriate package manager.

Windows users will require a client like PuTTy or X-Win32, both of which are available via OSU Site Licensed Software

Configuring PuTTy

PuTTy is a lightweight client that is typically used for command line only access to the UNIX environment. It may also be used with an X-11 server like XMing or X-Win32 to display windows for graphical applications on the client computer.

  1. Run the PuTTy executable (putty.exe).
  2. Fill in the appropriate host name ( for faculty and staff, for students).
  3. Under "Connection Type", select SSH.
  4. Enable X11 forwarding if necessary
    1. In the "Category:" pane of the left, expand "SSH" and select "X11".
    2. Check "Enable X11 forwarding".
    3. Enter localhost:0 in the "X display location" field.
  5. If desired, give the session a name in the "Saved Sessions" field and click "Save".
  6. Click "Open". A terminal window will open and prompt for a user name.

Configuring FastX2

The Ohio State University Department of Computer Science & Engineering has replaced X-Win32 with FastX2 for remote Linux sessions. You would usually use this to open a remote session to OR

Use this guide to configure your FasxtX2 software to connect to and

  1. Find the FastX2 shortcut on your desktop or in the Start Menu and launch the program.
    •  Note:  You can find the program in the Start Menu quickly by typing “fast” in the search box.
  2. The FastX 2 program window will open. Click the “+” symbol and then click “SSH”. 
  3. The “New SSH Connection” window will open. 

    • For stdlinux access:

      Enter “stdlinux” for the Name field and “” for the Host field. 

    • For faclinux access:

      Enter “faclinux” for the Name field and “” for the Host field.

    • Note: Students do not have access to and will receive an error when attempting to open a remote session.

  4. Click “Save” when finished.

  5. The username dialog box will open. Delete “admin” and enter your CSE username. Click “Continue” when finished.

  6. An alert will appear letting you know that “This host is not recognized by the system. …”. Click “Continue”.

  7. Enter the password for your CSE account on the following screen. Click “Continue” when finished.

  8. The remote session window will appear. There will be nothing inside the window. Click the “+” symbol and click the “GNOME” option. Then click "OK".

  9. A GNOME session to or will open in a new window.  


Available downloads:

Installation instructions: