University of New
School of Science and Technology

NX-CLIENT: Graphical remote desktop connection to turing

This document describes how to install and configure a program called NX-CLIENT.

Note: If you have a slow connection to the Internet, NX-Client may not work satisfactorily for you.


NX makes it possible to run any graphical application on any operating system across any network connection. Via NX accessing remote desktops, servers and applications, where ever their location, is just as fast, easy and secure as if you were sitting in front of them.

NX-Client allows external students, remotely connecting to our computer system (named turing), to use the same programs available to on-campus students connecting to turing (programs such as xemacs/emacs, gvim/vim, R, gnuplot, scilab, the C++ compiler g++, ..., javac (the Java compiler) and java (the Java Virtual Machine) , etc).

The nx-client program will present a graphical environment with the same look and feel as the graphical environments used by on-campus students (who are logging into their computer accounts via the on-campus lab computers).

  1. Installing and configuring the nxclient program on your home computer

NX-CLIENT is available for various operating systems including Linux, MS-Windows and Mac OSX. You need to download the appropriate NX-Client program to your computer system, install it on your system, and then configure it.

To install nx-client on your machine you will need to do the following:
  1. Firstly, you need to download the actual program to your computer system. You need to select one from the following choices (a - e)
    (depending on the system you are using)
    1. NX-Client for Microsoft Windows

      NX Client for Windows version 3 will work with MS-Windows i386/AMD64 2000/2003/XP/Vista/7/8

      Download and install the file: nxclient-3.5.0-9.exe to your computer system.
    2. NX-Client for Linux i386

      NX Client RPM for Linux - i386
      For Red Hat Enterprise 4/5/6,
      SLED 10.x/11.x,
      SLES 10/11,
      Open SUSE 10.x/11.x/12.x,
      Mandriva 10.1/2005/2006/2007/2008/2009/2010/2011,
      Fedora Linux Core 3/4/5/6,
      Fedora 7/8/9/10/11/12/13/14/15/16/17/18
      Download and install the file: nxclient-3.5.0-7.i386.rpm
    3. NX-Client for Mac OSX

      NX Client Compressed PKG for Mac OSX
      For PPC/Intel Mac OS X 10.3/10.4/10.5/10.6

      Download and install the file:

      Mac OS X Lion users

      Mac OS X Lion Users need to goto the following URL for relevant information

      NOTE: If you have Mac OS X 10.7 or later, please download and install OpenNX from The following instructions remain the same for this version.

  2. You will need to copy a key file named client.id_dsa.key from our computer system (named turing) to your home computer.
    Your computer will need this key in order for your nx-client program (now installed on your computer) to be able to successfully log into turing.

    To do this just right-click the following link client.id_dsa.key and then select the "Save Link as" option (if you are using Mozilla) from the pop up window. You can now save this key file to your computer's hard disk.

    NOTE: take a note of where on your system you have saved this key file - you will need this file for the next step

  3. Configuring the nxclient program on your home computer

    1. - Start the nxclient with the nxclient command (or icon) on your home system.
    2. - Create a session called  turing
      • The host is
      • The port is
      Once this is done, you will now need to tell the nx-client program where to find the key file on your system.

    3. Under the configuration option in nx-client find a button named "Key".
      Press the Key button and then the Import button, to import the key file (client.id_dsa.key) that you just copied over to your machine.
      • After you press the Import button, you can browse through the directories on your hard disk to find the  client.id_dsa.key  key file.

    4. You also need to select what type of connection you are using to the internet.
      For example, those using a ADSL would need to select the "ADSL" option.

        Here is a screen snapshot of my "General" nxclient options on my MS-Windows XP machine.

        • I am on a Local Area Network, so  LAN  is selected as the type of connection.
          If you have broad-band you will probably need to select the ADSL option.
        • In the "Desktop" option,  Unix  and  Custom  should be selected as shown
          • the  Unix  option refers to the Desktop running on turing (that is Unix based)  NOT  your desktop

        • Next, still within the "Desktop" option, select "Settings"
          A Custom-Settings window should now appear
          You need to select
          1. Run the Default X-Client Script on server option in the Application section AND
          2. New virtual desktop option in the Options section
          Here is a screen snapshot of my Custom-Settings.
    5. - Under "Advanced" option, make sure that
      "Disable SSL encryption of all traffic" is NOT selected
      Here is a screen snapshot of my "Advance" nxclient options on my MS-Windows XP machine.
    6. - Save your configuration. (NX-client should now be able to connect to turing)

Loggin onto turing using NX-Client

During the installation/configuration process, an NX-Client icon should have been created and should now be located on your desktop. To start the NX-Client program and log into your UNE account on turing, double click the NX-Client icon. Once you have successfully logged into your UNE account on turing you will presented with an X-Windows desktop environment
(As shown here)
this desktop environment is just like the desktop environment on-campus students see when they log into our computer labs at UNE.
Most of the commands you will be entering for this subject will be done via a terminal window.
To start a terminal window, using the mouse: You are now ready to commence the first lab tutorial (exercise) Lab_01

Loggin out of NX-Client

It is important that once you have finished using the NX-Client program, that you end your session properly. You need to select the logout option rather than just close the window.

When you login using NX-Client you start a program on the NX-server located on turing. If you do not log out properly, you may leave processes running on turing that should have been stopped. Also terminating an NX-session without logging out may cause you problems the next time you try to log into turing via NX-Client.

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Copyright 2013 by The School of Science and Technology,
Mathematics, Statistics and Computer Science,
The University of New England.
All rights reserved.

NX-Client FAQ page written by: Serge Bögeholz
Last Updated November 2013