My personal and professional life


Using xrdp on various Linuxes and a problem on Fedora

I've been using various Linuxes in virtual machines since more than 15 years in order to keep my skills sharp. It's simply not enough to know just one Linux distribution, but you have to know at least the major ones (e.g. Debian, RPM or based on another package management system ones). So apart from Slackware, I also regularly use Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora, OpenSuSE, CentOS and more recently Oracle Linux (for Oracle XE). Over the years, I have also experimented with Gentoo, FreeBSD, OpenBSD, NetBSD and others.
What I immediately need in any of these is secure shell (SSH) of course, so I could type commands remotely. However, I also like to work and play with GUI software, so I also need remote graphics access. Over the years I used VNC and NoMachine, but I never liked any of these for various reasons. What I have always missed in Linux was an easy to use access like RDP with real session management and all the other goodies that is lightweight and robust (e.g. NoMachine also manages sessions, but encodes video of the desktop, which makes the picture blurred and frequently doesn't work on my Linux virtual machines after upgrades).
So, I discovered xrdp, which is "an open source RDP server". It's easy to install, configure and run on Debian, Ubuntu and OpenSuSE and it just works. The installation for Fedora requires some additional steps, which are described in README.Fedora by xrdp package's maintainer Bojan Smojver. By default, xrdp on Fedora works only with VNC sessions, but I already said I do not like it, so I prefer using Xorg like with my other Linuxes. I'll summarize the steps here:
  1. Install necessary packages: dnf install xrdp xorgxrdp
  2. Edit /etc/xrdp/xrdp.ini and enable Xorg sessions;
  3. Enable access by anybody or just specific users, e.g. echo "allowed_users = anybody" >> /etc/X11/Xwrapper.config (see also bug 1450720);
  4. Enable port 3389 on the firewall, e.g. firewall-cmd --zone=dmz --add-port=3389/tcp
  5. Point your RDP client to the Linux machine and have fun.
Well, until yesterday. After upgrading my Fedora virtual machine to Fedora 31 the RDP connection stopped working with Xorg sessions although VNC sessions were working fine. The xrdp log at /var/log/xrdp-session.log was suggesting that the Xorg session is crashing just after it's started, so I was getting a blank screen.

[20200109-10:12:53] [INFO ] setpriv --no-new-privs Xorg :10 -auth .Xauthority -config xrdp/xorg.conf -noreset -nolisten tcp -logfile .xorgxrdp.%s.log
[20200109-10:12:53] [CORE ] waiting for window manager (pid 4902) to exit
[20200109-10:12:57] [CORE ] window manager (pid 4902) did exit, cleaning up session
[20200109-10:12:57] [INFO ] calling auth_stop_session and auth_end from pid 4877

Investigating the reason, I noticed the following in the journal (e.g. with journalctl -r):

Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora systemd[4881]: Failed to start GNOME Shell on X11.
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora systemd[4881]: gnome-shell-x11.service: Failed with result 'protocol'.
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]:   Current serial number in output stream:  359
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]:   Serial number of failed request:  358
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]:   Minor opcode of failed request:  7 (RRSetScreenSize)
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]:   Major opcode of failed request:  139 (RANDR)
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]: X Error of failed request:  BadMatch (invalid parameter attributes)
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora xrdp-sesman[4870]: rdpRRScreenSetSize: not allowing resize
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora xrdp-sesman[4870]: rdpRRScreenSetSize: width 1688 height 932 mmWidth 447 mmHeight 247
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora gnome-shell[5157]: Xlib:  extension "DPMS" missing on display ":10.0".
Jan 09 10:12:55 fedora xrdp-sesman[4870]: rdpRRGetInfo:

So, gnome-shell was failing actually. Initially, I found bug 1575792, which seemed similar, but it wasn't resolved. Finally, the problem turned out to be the latest version of xorgxrdp 0.2.12 (see issue #156). I had to simply downgrade to xorgxrdp 0.2.11, by forcefully installing the RHEL 8's xorgxrdp package like this:

rpm --nodeps -i xorgxrdp-0.2.11-1.el8.x86_64.rpm

And things are again back to normal.

Update 2020-01-14: Of course it's good to eclude package xorgxrdp from upgrades (see Excluding Packages From Transactions) or simply echo "excludepkgs=xorgxrdp" >> /etc/dnf/dnf.conf as one line command.

Happy using your favorite Linux distro!


Unknown said...

Obrigado, me ajudou a solucionar este problema.
Thank you, helped me to solve this problem.

Anonymous said...

Had to refer to package xorgxrdp instead of xorgrdp, at least in Fedora 32 and 33, as 32 and 33 tells me package xorgrdp doesn't exist.