xhost -- server access control program for X


xhost [[+-]name . . .]


The xhost program is used to add and delete host names to the list allowed to make connections to the X server. This provides a rudimentary form of privacy control and security. It is only sufficient for a workstation (single user) environment, although it does limit the worst abuses.


xhost accepts the following command line options described below. For security, the options that affect access control may only be run from the controlling host. For workstations, this is the same machine as the server. For X terminals, it is the login host.

[+] name
name (the plus sign is optional) is added to the list allowed to connect to the X server. The name can be a host name.

name is removed from the list of allowed to connect to the server. The name can be a host name. Existing connections are not broken, but new connection attempts will be denied.

NOTE: The current machine is allowed to be removed; however, further connections (including attempts to add it back) will not be permitted. Resetting the server (thereby breaking all connections) is the only way to allow local connections again.

Access is granted to all hosts, even if those not on the list (that is, access control is turned off).

Access is restricted to only those hosts on the list (that is, access control is turned on).

If no command line arguments are given, a message indicating whether or not access control is currently enabled is printed, followed by the list of clients allowed to connect. This is the only option that may be used from machines other than the controlling host.



Environment variables

default host and display number


For each name added to the access control list, a line of the following form is printed.
   name being added to access control list
For each name removed from the access control list, a line of the following form is printed:
   name being removed from access control list

Known limitations

You cannot specify a display on the command line because -display is a valid command line argument (indicating that you want to remove the machine named display from the access list).

This is not really a bug, but the X server stores network addresses, not host names. If somehow you change a host's network address while the server is still running, xhost must be used to add the new address and/or remove the old address.

See also

xauth(X), Xsco(X), X(X)
© 2003 Caldera International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.7 -- 11 February 2003