[K12OSN] LTSP 5 Local App Howto?

Jim Kronebusch jim at winonacotter.org
Mon Jul 9 15:57:23 UTC 2007

On Tue, 19 Jun 2007 10:59:46 -0400, Jim McQuillan wrote
> Jim,
> "Installing" really is that easy.  "running" is yet another problem. 
> There's no built-in support for local apps in LTSP-5 yet.
> You'll need to deal with how to make the users home directory available. 
>   That's needed, so that the firefox prefs will be available to firefox.
> You'll also need to setup ssh-server to allow you to actually execute 
> something locally.

I have set up LDAP on the server and exported /home.  I also chrooted into the client
directory /opt/ltsp/i386 and installed libpam-ldap, libnss-ldap, libpam-mount,
openssh-server, firefox, and flashplugin-nonfree.  I configured ldap and am able to
confirm users with "id <username>" and "getent passwd <username>".  I configured
/etc/security/pam_mount.conf with the following line:

volume * nfs /home/& /home/& - - -

To try and tell pam to mount the users home directory at login.  This doesn't seem to be
working.  So for testing purposes I am just logging in on Screen1 (alt+ctrl+f1) and
manually mounting /home with "sudo mount -t nfs /home" (my ltsp server
is  This mounts /home and I can see all users folders.

I have set /etc/ssh/ssh_config on the server with "ForwardX11 yes" and configured
/opt/ltsp/i386/etc/ssh/sshd_config with "X11Forwarding yes".

>From a terminal (with the manually mounted /home from screen1), I can log in with one of
my ldap users, open a terminal and "ssh testuser at (where testuser is the
logged in ldap user and is my thin clients current IP) and authenticate
with the users password.  I get an error of "Warning: No xauth data; using fake
authentication data for X11 forwarding", but this error seems trivial as I am still able
to use the ssh session.  I can issued the command "firefox" from the ssh session and
after a long wait (about 30 seconds) I actually get a firefox running as a local app. 
Once open I am able to navigate websites with a fair amount of speed (about as good as I
would expect from a client with 533Mhz and 128MB RAM).

So I guess I could call this a step in the right direction and partial success.  However
the speed to open is a concern, flash runs but still has no sound, and of course I have
the issues of pam_mount not automatically mounting the /home directories and I have to
manually ssh into the client and run firefox.

Anyone have any suggestions for me from this point?  I assume that I can figure out how
to avoid the manual stuff for ssh and nfs mounting, but I don't understand why this app
takes so long to load and why sound isn't working.  If I can't get past those 2 issues
there really is no reason to move forward with the others.  Also I wonder if there is a
more efficient way of accessing the local app without using X11 forwarding, it seems
like a lot of extra network traffic could be caused by having to send the X data back to
the server just so the server can send it back to the client.  There must be a way to
access it locally.


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