X11 Forwarding through SSH not working (missing xauth)

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Published on May 28th 2014 - Listed in Linux


Today I tried to launch jconsole on a remote server through a forwarded X session. But for some reason it just didn't work...

I did as always by connecting to the remote server with -X:

workstation ~ # ssh -X root@remoteserver

And then launched jconsole:

remoteserver ~ # jconsole &

... but nothing happened. I verified the /etc/ssh/sshd_config on the remote server side:

remoteserver ~ # cat /etc/ssh/sshd_config | grep X11For
X11Forwarding yes

And on the client side (my workstation) the /etc/ssh/ssh_config:

workstation ~ # cat /etc/ssh/ssh_config | grep X11
#   ForwardX11 no
# should not forward X11 connections to your local X11-display for
# keystrokes as you type, just like any other X11 client could do.
# file if you want to have the remote X11 authentification data to
ForwardX11Trusted yes

Both sides are correct... what is causing this?

I ran the ssh command again, this time in verbose mode and found the following error:

workstation ~ # ssh -X -v root@remoteserver
debug1: Entering interactive session.
debug1: Requesting X11 forwarding with authentication spoofing.
debug1: Sending environment.
debug1: Sending env LANG = en_US.UTF-8
debug1: Remote: No xauth program; cannot forward with spoofing.
X11 forwarding request failed on channel 0

Argh! The xauth package is missing on the remoteserver!

remoteserver ~ # apt-get install xauth

And then ran it again:

workstation ~ # ssh -X root@remoteserver

remoteserver ~ # jconsole &

Success:

jconsole through x-forwarding 


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