Community supported update to X11

XQuartz for Mac

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Download XQuartz 2.6.3

  -  57.06 MB  -  Freeware
  • Latest Version:

    XQuartz 2.8.4

  • Requirements:

    Mac OS X 10.5 or later

  • User Rating:

    Click to vote
  • Author / Product:

    XQuartz Team / XQuartz for Mac

  • Old Versions:

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XQuartz for Mac is an open-source effort to develop a version of the X Window System that runs on Mac OS X. Together with supporting libraries and applications, it forms the that Apple shipped with OS X versions 10.5 through 10.7.

The updates available on this site are not official Apple releases. They are a convenient way for users to stay up to date with progress made in the open source community (in which Apple is participating). Official Apple releases will come from Apple (most likely through OS and Security Updates via Software Update). These updates will likely incorporate many of the changes made in releases when and if Apple deems them appropriate.

X11 is no longer included with Mac, but X11 server and client libraries are available from the app project. X11 server and client libraries for macOS are available from the XQuartz project!

Apple created the app project as a community effort to further develop and support X11 on Mac. The XQuartz project was originally based on the version of X11 included in Mac OS X v10.5. There have since been multiple releases of XQuartz for macOS with fixes, support for new features, and additional refinements to the X11 experience. Apple is a contributor to the XQuartz project and has worked to ensure that X11 works as expected with macOS and latest available versions of the tool.

How do I use XQuartz on Mac?

  • Install the app on your macOS, which is the official X server software for Mac
  • Run Applications > Utilities >
  • Right click on the X Quartz icon in the dock and select Applications > Terminal.  This should bring up a new xterm terminal windows.
  • In this xterm windows, ssh into the linux system of your choice using the -X argument (secure X11 forwarding).  For example, to log into you would run something like ssh -Y [email protected]
  • Once you are logged into the linux system, you can just run the GUI program of your choice (ie. matlab, mathematics, etc) and it will display on your Mac.

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