X Power Tools
By Chris Tyler
Publisher: O'Reilly Media
Final Release Date: December 2007
Pages: 272

This book puts you in charge of the most flexible and adaptable graphical interface in the computer industry. The X Window System underlies graphical desktops on Linux and Unix systems, and supports advanced features of modern graphics cards. More people use the X Window System than ever before, but there are few books about X in print. X Power Tools fills that hole with the most practical and up-to-date information available.

Written in O'Reilly's popular Power Tools format, X Power Tools offers dozens of standalone articles, thoroughly cross-referenced, on useful tools and techniques for using X. This unique inside look at X gives Unix/Linux system administrators, owners of self-administered systems, and power users a lot of useful ways to harness the power of this system effectively. This book:

  • Offers a thorough grounding in X configuration and how the system works
  • Provides the complete ins and outs of changing a desktop's behavior, such as fonts, keyboard settings, and remote security
  • Includes articles on how to take advantage of X's "network transparency" -- its ability to display graphical applications on a remote machine
  • Explores intriguing areas such as using multiple monitors, building kiosks, and accessibility
  • Features discussions on X Window innovations and the future of the system
X Power Tools covers configuration and use of X, focusing on Linux but also including notes on other operating systems such as Solaris and FreeBSD. Each article in the book gives you insight into X; the entire book gives you a real grasp on this system and what you can do with it.

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(2 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


A book for X users, of all levels

By DaveR

from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

About Me Inquisitive user

Verified Reviewer


  • Concise
  • Helpful examples


    Best Uses

    • Intermediate

    Comments about oreilly X Power Tools:

    I have read the book many times, learning more with each pass. The historical background is fascinating, where X originated, and hints as to where it may be going. There are "aha!" moments, such as to what may be going on at a kiosk, or ATM, or when watching a projected lecture (what you see, and what the lecturer probably sees on his/her monitor).
    I also benefit from the comprehensive index, when I want to revisit a specific facet of the subject. This is particularly true as I fine-tune my multi-screen Fedora 12 configuration.

    (1 of 2 customers found this review helpful)


    The best X configuration/ hacking book available

    By Yaron Kahanovitch

    from Undisclosed

    Comments about oreilly X Power Tools:

    X configuration is always one important task when developing application in Unix environment.

    In the past we use to interact directly with the X server via Xlib. My library was overloaded with Xlib books and the development was cumbersome and frustrating. Thanks god, there are exelent libraries that makes life easier GTK and QT are great and give me simple, full solution for my requirements. One left thing is to configure the X. How to manage two X servers on the same workstation?

    How to configure the X to directly run my application? How to connect special IO devices to the X?

    Well, X power tools give you those answers.

    It is, of the shelf, book that enables me to fine tune the X to my boss bizarre requirement.

    It just open for you the complex world of X configuration

    I warmly recommend this book!!

    Yaron Kahanovitch


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