xauth


SYNOPSIS
       xauth [ -f authfile ] [ -vqibn ] [ command arg ... ]

DESCRIPTION
       The  xauth program is used to edit and display the authorization infor-
       mation used in connecting to the X server.   This  program  is  usually
       used  to  extract authorization records from one machine and merge them
       in on another (as is the case when  using  remote  logins  or  granting
       access  to  other  users).   Commands  (described below) may be entered
       interactively, on the xauth command line, or  in  scripts.   Note  that
       this  program  does  not  contact the X server except when the generate
       command is used.  Normally xauth is not used to  create  the  authority
       file  entry  in  the  first place; the program that starts the X server
       (often xdm or startx) does that.

OPTIONS
       The following options may be used with xauth.  They may be given  indi-
       vidually (e.g., -q -i) or may combined (e.g., -qi).

       -f authfile
               This  option  specifies  the name of the authority file to use.
               By default, xauth will use the file specified by the XAUTHORITY
               environment  variable  or .Xauthority in the user's home direc-
               tory.

       -q      This option indicates that xauth should operate quietly and not
               print  unsolicited  status messages.  This is the default if an
               xauth command is given on the command line or if  the  standard
               output is not directed to a terminal.

       -v      This  option  indicates that xauth should operate verbosely and
               print status messages indicating the results of various  opera-
               tions  (e.g.,  how  many  records  have been read in or written
               out).  This is the default if xauth is  reading  commands  from
               its  standard  input  and  its standard output is directed to a
               terminal.

       -i      This option indicates that xauth should  ignore  any  authority
               file  locks.   Normally,  xauth will refuse to read or edit any
               authority files that have been locked by other  programs  (usu-
               ally xdm or another xauth).

       -b      This  option  indicates  that xauth should attempt to break any
               authority file locks before proceeding.  Use this  option  only
               to clean up stale locks.

       -n      This  option indicates that xauth should not attempt to resolve
               any hostnames, but should simply always print the host  address
               as stored in the authority file.

COMMANDS
       The following commands may be used to manipulate authority files:

       generate displayname protocolname [trusted|untrusted]
               [timeout seconds] [group group-id] [data hexdata]

               This  command  is  similar to add.  The main difference is that
               instead of requiring the user to supply the key data,  it  con-
               nects to the server specified in displayname and uses the SECU-
               RITY extension in order to get the key data  to  store  in  the
               authorization file.  If the server cannot be contacted or if it
               does not support the SECURITY  extension,  the  command  fails.
               Otherwise,  an  authorization  entry  for the indicated display
               using the given protocol is added to the authorization file.  A
               protocol  name consisting of just a single period is treated as
               an abbreviation for MIT-MAGIC-COOKIE-1.

               If the trusted option is used, clients that connect using  this
               authorization  will have full run of the display, as usual.  If
               untrusted is used, clients that connect using  this  authoriza-
               tion  will  be considered untrusted and prevented from stealing
               or tampering with data belonging to trusted clients.   See  the
               SECURITY  extension  specification  for  full  details  on  the
               restrictions imposed on  untrusted  clients.   The  default  is
               untrusted.

               The  timeout  option  specifies how long in seconds this autho-
               rization will be valid.  If the  authorization  remains  unused
               (no  clients  are  connected with it) for longer than this time
               period,  the  server  purges  the  authorization,  and   future
               attempts  to connect using it will fail.  Note that the purging
               done by the server does not delete the authorization entry from
               the authorization file.  The default timeout is 60 seconds.

               The  group  option specifies the application group that clients
               connecting with this authorization should belong to.   See  the
               application  group  extension  specification  for more details.
               The default is to not belong to an application group.

               The data option specifies data that the server  should  use  to
               generate  the  authorization.   Note  that this is not the same
               data that gets written to the authorization file.   The  inter-
               pretation  of  this data depends on the authorization protocol.
               The hexdata is in the same format as the  hexkey  described  in
               the add command.  The default is to send no data.


       [n]extract filename displayname...
               Authorization  entries  for  each of the specified displays are
               written to the indicated file.   If  the  nextract  command  is
               used,  the entries are written in a numeric format suitable for
               non-binary transmission (such as secure electronic mail).   The
               extracted  entries  can  be  read  back  in using the merge and
               nmerge commands.  If the filename consists  of  just  a  single
               dash, the entries will be written to the standard output.

       [n]list [displayname...]
               numeric format given in the description of the extract  command
               is  used.   If  a  filename consists of just a single dash, the
               standard input will be read if it hasn't been read before.

       remove displayname...
               Authorization  entries  matching  the  specified  displays  are
               removed from the authority file.

       source filename
               The specified file is treated as a script containing xauth com-
               mands to execute.  Blank lines and lines beginning with a sharp
               sign  (#)  are  ignored.  A single dash may be used to indicate
               the standard input, if it hasn't already been read.

       info    Information describing the authorization file, whether  or  not
               any  changes  have been made, and from where xauth commands are
               being read is printed on the standard output.

       exit    If any modifications have been  made,  the  authority  file  is
               written  out  (if  allowed),  and the program exits.  An end of
               file is treated as an implicit exit command.

       quit    The program exits, ignoring any modifications.  This  may  also
               be accomplished by pressing the interrupt character.

       help [string]
               A  description of all commands that begin with the given string
               (or all commands if no string is given) is printed on the stan-
               dard output.

       ?       A  short  list of the valid commands is printed on the standard
               output.

DISPLAY NAMES
       Display names for the add, [n]extract, [n]list,  [n]merge,  and  remove
       commands  use  the  same format as the DISPLAY environment variable and
       the common -display command line argument.   Display-specific  informa-
       tion  (such  as  the screen number) is unnecessary and will be ignored.
       Same-machine connections (such as local-host  sockets,  shared  memory,
       and  the Internet Protocol hostname localhost) are referred to as host-
       name/unix:displaynumber so that local entries  for  different  machines
       may be stored in one authority file.

EXAMPLE
       The  most  common use for xauth is to extract the entry for the current
       display, copy it to another machine,  and  merge  it  into  the  user's
       authority file on the remote machine:

               %  xauth extract - $DISPLAY | ssh otherhost xauth merge -

       The following command contacts the server :0 to create an authorization
       using the MIT-MAGIC-COOKIE-1 protocol.  Clients that connect with  this
       authorization will be untrusted.
            %  xauth generate :0 .
               default authority file if XAUTHORITY isn't defined.

SEE ALSO
       X(7), Xsecurity(7), xhost(1), Xserver(1), xdm(1), startx(1), Xau(3).

BUGS
       Users that have unsecure networks should take  care  to  use  encrypted
       file   transfer   mechanisms  to  copy  authorization  entries  between
       machines.  Similarly, the MIT-MAGIC-COOKIE-1 protocol is not very  use-
       ful  in unsecure environments.  Sites that are interested in additional
       security may need to use encrypted  authorization  mechanisms  such  as
       Kerberos.

       Spaces  are  currently not allowed in the protocol name.  Quoting could
       be added for the truly perverse.

AUTHOR
       Jim Fulton, MIT X Consortium



X Version 11                      xauth 1.0.4                         XAUTH(1)
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