Access Linux From Windows XP / Vista / 7 Systems

How do I access Linux from Windows Vista or XP or 7 operating systems?

Windows and Linux are different operating system but both can talk to each other using TCP/IP networking and special software program such as Samba. Samba is used for sharing files and printers with Linux and vise versa. Following list summaries the application name which you can use to access Your Linux server/system from Windows system.

Linux Command line access from Windows XP / vista / 7

You need to use special program called PuTTY. It is a free SSH, Telnet, rlogin, and raw TCP client for Windows system.

Step # 1: Download putty

Download putty.exe from Save putty.exe file on your desktop.

Step #2: How do I use putty?

Linux (UNIX) runs special program/service called Secure Shell (SSH) which is designed for logging into system and executing commands on a networked computer. By default ssh server runs on all Linux server. You just need to use putty.exe to connect Linux server from Windows XP.

(a) Double click on putty.exe
A window will open as follows:

Fig.01: Windows Pc Accessing Linux Server Via Putty SSH Client

Specify your connection name by typing hostname (such as or IP address (such as of Linux server. Click on Open button to connect to remote Linux server via SSH.

Fig.02: Putty Login Confirmation

Click on Yes button to accept server’s host key and cache the same key.

Fig.03: User Logged into Linux Server Via Putty client

Type your username (such as vivek) and password to connect to Linux server.

Linux GUI/Desktop Access from Windows XP

You need to use TightVNC server software on Linux and TightVNC client on Windows XP desktop. TightVNC is a free remote control software package derived from the popular VNC software. With TightVNC, you can see the desktop of a remote Linux machine and control it with your local mouse and keyboard, just like you would do it sitting in the front of that computer.

Step # 1: Install tightvncserver on Linux

Download tightvncserver here. If you are using Debian Linux, use following command to install tightvncserver (login as the root user):

# apt-get install tightvncserver

Start your vncserver (it needs to setup a new password to access your desktop from Windows XP), so type following command:

$ tightvncserver


You will require a password to access your desktops.


New 'X' desktop is debian:1

Creating default startup script /home/tv/.vnc/xstartup
Starting applications specified in /home/tv/.vnc/xstartup

How do I connect from Windows XP to Linux Desktop?
You need to download VNC Viewer client. Select the viewer executable file for Windows, which does not require installation. Download and extract file on your desktop.

a) Double click on vncviewer.exe
Type IP address:1 ( of hostname:1 (debian:1) to connect to Linux desktop

Fig.04: Connecting To Linux Desktop

b) Type the password you have created while setting vncserver command.

Fig.05: Authenticating Session

c) And within few seconds you should able to access your Linux server desktop from Windows XP. Here is screen shot of my KDE desktop:

Fig.06 Linux Desktop

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39 comments… add one
  • Narendra Jun 10, 2011 @ 10:57

    Hi Friends,
    I am using vmware workstation on windows. And i have installed “Ubuntu” in vmware (on same machine). I am able to ping from windows to Linux(Ubuntu) and vice-versa. But when i try to connect using “putty.exe” i am unable to access my linux machine.
    so please guide me.

    – Narendra.

  • shubham Jun 23, 2011 @ 16:59

    just thanks

  • Pradeep Jun 25, 2011 @ 15:50

    Hi Guys, I have Sony NSZ-GT1 which is a BD player with Google TV platform. This is based on Linux system. Unfortunately it does not allow to install any outside applications. For Example certain video player plugins to watch web based video. This device is on a home network. What I want to do is to access this device through my desktop via PUTTY etc so that I can add some plugins. But I could not get access to that device through PUTTY. Is there any one who can help me out. Thanks.

  • sunshine Jul 26, 2011 @ 8:16

    Hi, i m using tightvnc server on debian to which i connect through tighvncviewer from windows xp. Everything is fine i get access to debian pc but not able to access the top and bottom taskbars on remote debian machine. Can anyone please help me out.


  • tips Aug 16, 2011 @ 14:00

    i tried to find easy and simple tutorials of putty.exe for long time. thanx for these tutorial.

  • Paulo Ricardo Stradioti Dec 1, 2011 @ 18:25

    It’s working. Thank you for sharing!

  • saleem Dec 28, 2011 @ 7:15

    Im working as a system admin in an engineering college.We using squid for internet sharing to clients and open ip to admin office,Principal,etc.. without squid as direct ip giving dns servers ips. The problem we resist is we cannot monitor/control those people through squid.
    Please help me control those Direct IP clients by Linux Server.
    Anticipating !!!

  • sachin Jan 10, 2012 @ 12:56

    hello sir
    i’m very confused after using putty
    then i’m very happy for using putty soft

    thnx sir

  • Hundeep Jul 12, 2012 @ 7:36

    After giving the IP adress , no security alert window shows but it directly enters the black command line window and gets timed out!! HELP

  • rahul Aug 7, 2012 @ 17:18

    I am using Windows xp and suse server
    Earlier i my friend make connect between a server and client which perfectly working
    but unfortunately i had format my windows xp now i try to connect my ping from my computer to server its shows request time out and also i tied with putty it shows request time out
    my computer is directly connected to server through lan cable
    please suggest me what is problem qand suggest me the solution

  • Pretty Oct 25, 2013 @ 8:15

    I’m using a Linux server in the university (I installed tight vnc server on it), and I want to remote access it from home (I installed tight vnc viewer on a windows machine).
    so I suppose that I have to pass through Internet ?? if so, what address should I use??? I tried the IP adress 10.XX.XX.XX but it didn’t work, I also tried to pass through university server: and it didn’t work neither.
    Any ideas please
    Thank you

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