Friday, March 28, 2008

Cygwin, X, and PuTTY

For Christmas last year, I got a new computer, upon which I immediately installed Ubuntu. Yay, Ubuntu! OK. And customized it to my liking. Also, if you care, I had eschewed the default email system for claws-mail, which I had also installed previously on my Windows Laptop. While not completely as GUI-rific as Thunderbird, I like the "individual message is a file" methodology rather than Thunderbird's "large file contains all messages" which basically failed miserably for me.

Right, so that's the background. The point of all this is that I'm here, late at night, and for whatever reasons known only to me, I wanted to check my mail on my now rarely used laptop (it has a broken hinge) while watching TV. Well, I didn't really want to check mail with the client on my laptop, because I didn't need or want to store the mail on the laptop. Plus, I didn't remember if I left mail on the server, so .. hey, stop asking questions, ok? :)

So, I remembered that I had already installed cygwin and X windows. I clicked on my cygwin icon, typed "startx" and then in the xterm box, "xhost +". Then I opened PuTTY that had a session that Forwarded X connections, connected to my Ubuntu box, logged in, then typed in "claws-mail" and I have the application running on my desktop in Windows. I suppose I could have VNC'd or other type of remote connection. However, the X interface makes the result almost seamless with Windows proper.File system is still on my Ubuntu, and so anything that happens disk-wise doesn't affect my laptop.

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