Walk-in office hours
with Dr. Ryan Johnson,
Applications Scientist

Wednesdays 10 am to noon

10. Installing SSH & X Windows on your laptop/PC

Installing Cygwin-X on Windows 7

  1. Open your favorite web browser and go to

  2. Download setup.exe onto the machine desktop. (You can click on the "Install cygwin Now" icon to do this.)

  3. Rename C:/cygwin (if it exists) to C:/cygwin-old.

  4. Double-click on setup.exe on the desktop.

  5. Follow the instructions, clicking "Next," "Install from Internet/Next," and "C:/cygwin" as the root directory/"Next."  Basically, you will be using the default settings for the first few screens of the setup program.

  6. When you get to the screen, "Select Local Package Directory," browse to choose "C:/Users/youruser/Documents" instead of the default.

  7. For the screen, "Select Your Internet Connection," use "Direct Connection" (the default), and click "Next."

  8. For the download site, scroll down about 1/3 of the way down, anc choose

  9. On the packages selection screen, scroll down to the X11 category, and click on the "+" sign in the box.  This will toggle to a "-" sign, and a sub-menu will come up.  Clock on the word "Display" on the same line as the main "X11" package and toggle it so that it reads "Install," and an "X" will appear for all subpackages in this category.

  10. Note that in some packages, the requisite bare-bones components are already checked off.

  11. In addition to adding the X11 packages, several others will be needed.  Click on "Skip" next to each of these to add them to the package download. Click next.

    1. Under the "Net" package: openssh (this will automatically also add "openssl"; this is ok); and inetutils.
    2. Under the "Shells" package, add "tcsh" (csh and bash will be checked off already, by default).

  12. Click "Next" to start the package download.  This will take ten to fifteen minutes with the selected packages.

  13. When prompted as to whether you would like to have icons installed on the desktop, click on the appropriate check-boxes, and click "Finish."

  14. The setup program does not always correctly add icons on the desktop. If no icons for cygwin and startxwin appear, they need to be added manually.  To do this for "startxwin.bat" go to C:cygwin/usr/X11R6/bin in Windows Explorer, and right click on "startxwin.bat"; scroll down to "Send to" and on the submenu, select "Desktop (create shortcut)".  An icon for starxwin will appear.  To do this for cygwin, go to the Windows start icon on the bottom left hand corner of the screen --> All Programs --> Cygwin, and right click on "Cygwin bash shell."  Scroll down to "Send to", and on the submenu, select "Desktop (create shortcut)."

UNM IT distributes a Windows SSH client free to all students and staff.  To download the client, navigate here and enter your UNM NetID and password when prompted.  An installation is not required. 

A widely used free SSH for Windows is called PuTTY.  Either Google “putty ssh” or navigate here and follow the instructions. 

Center for Advanced Research Computing

MSC01 1190
1601 Central Ave. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87106

p: 505.277.8249
f:  505.277.8235