xu4 as thin client question

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owopeachy
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xu4 as thin client question

Post by owopeachy »

Hey all, a client of mine wants to upgrade their current setup where they have 1 debian server and a few old odroid U3+ boards. They would connect to the debian server using xrdp on the old odroids; the server is running the xfce desktop environment, but we had issues with the connections before where they were extremely laggy and it wasn't pleasant to work with so I want to make sure the new boards don't give that issue. I was looking at the xu4 and it looks like it would work well - has anyone got experience using these devices with xrdp? Do you think it would be able to run as a thin client without issue?
Also, if anyone knows where I can get cases for them in south africa please let me know
Thanks,
peachy

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mad_ady
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Re: xu4 as thin client question

Post by mad_ady »

A lot of years ago, in pre-covid times I used xrdp on my ubuntu pc so that I could connect easily from either windows or linux. Xrdp had a x11vnc backend so I could connect to my existing desktop.
There were always problems, issues and latency, even in a wired lan, and the connection felt laggy.

VNC wasn't better over the internet, especially since I had two screens that I needed to transfer over...

X11 over ssh is too slow, especially on windows with lots of refreshes.

So I kept looking and found a better alternative - xpra! Xpra does video streaming of your apps. You start an xpra session on the server. This starts a dummy X11 server, where the remote apps render to. The client connects and streams the windows back, making them look like native windows (you can move them accross your desktop). Or you can stream a remote desktop, like vnc.

My xpra server runs on my intel workstation, and for a while I used an xu4 as a client. I was streaming back remote firefox and thunderbird instances that were using ~8GB RAM on the server. The xpra client took about 1G of RAM on the xu4, and CPU was lightly used (though the fan did turn on). And it was totally usable (though it may require a reboot after 8h, especially if you use a local browser too).

So my advice:
1. Test an intel PC as client with the existing server and see if it's sluggish as well. My bet is that it is.
2. Try xpra as well, on the existing setup. Make sure client and server run the same version. See if it's more responsive.
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owopeachy
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Re: xu4 as thin client question

Post by owopeachy »

mad_ady wrote:
Mon Aug 28, 2023 8:28 pm
A lot of years ago, in pre-covid times I used xrdp on my ubuntu pc so that I could connect easily from either windows or linux. Xrdp had a x11vnc backend so I could connect to my existing desktop.
There were always problems, issues and latency, even in a wired lan, and the connection felt laggy.

VNC wasn't better over the internet, especially since I had two screens that I needed to transfer over...

X11 over ssh is too slow, especially on windows with lots of refreshes.

So I kept looking and found a better alternative - xpra! Xpra does video streaming of your apps. You start an xpra session on the server. This starts a dummy X11 server, where the remote apps render to. The client connects and streams the windows back, making them look like native windows (you can move them accross your desktop). Or you can stream a remote desktop, like vnc.

My xpra server runs on my intel workstation, and for a while I used an xu4 as a client. I was streaming back remote firefox and thunderbird instances that were using ~8GB RAM on the server. The xpra client took about 1G of RAM on the xu4, and CPU was lightly used (though the fan did turn on). And it was totally usable (though it may require a reboot after 8h, especially if you use a local browser too).

So my advice:
1. Test an intel PC as client with the existing server and see if it's sluggish as well. My bet is that it is.
2. Try xpra as well, on the existing setup. Make sure client and server run the same version. See if it's more responsive.
Thanks for this suggestion! I will definitely give it a try

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