I am fed up with the default Windows interface so I decided to install Cygwin and run a gnome shell on startup.

When the installation was done, I went into Cygwin and started X with this command xinit gnome-session and I got this error and the shell closed shortly thereafter.

Screenshot of gnome error

and this is the output log

Screenshot of output log

I think it has something to do with display drivers but I really don't know when I was installing Cygwin it came up with an error but stupidly I pressed OK without reading it, so help.

  • 4
    For textual output, copying the text is far more beneficial for us than screenshots.
    – choroba
    Jun 12, 2017 at 9:50
  • meta.stackoverflow.com/q/303812/995714
    – phuclv
    Jun 12, 2017 at 11:15
  • $ xinit gnome-session Welcome to the XWin X Server Vendor: The Cygwin/X Project Release: OS: CYGWIN_NT-10.0 2016-MP06NE55 2.8.0(0.309/5/3) 2017-04-01 20:47 x86_64 OS: Windows 10 [Windows NT 10.0 build 14393] (Win64) Package: version 1.19.2-1 built 2017-03-09 XWin was started with the following command line: X :0 (II) xorg.conf is not supported (II) See x.cygwin.com/docs/faq/cygwin-x-faq.html for more information LoadPreferences: /home/RYC0001/.XWinrc not found
    – Fish4203
    Jun 12, 2017 at 20:18
  • LoadPreferences: Loading /etc/X11/system.XWinrc LoadPreferences: Done parsing the configuration file... winDetectSupportedEngines - RemoteSession: no winDetectSupportedEngines - DirectDraw4 installed, allowing ShadowDDNL
    – Fish4203
    Jun 12, 2017 at 20:18
  • winDetectSupportedEngines - Returning, supported engines 00000005 winSetEngine - Using Shadow DirectDraw NonLocking winScreenInit - Using Windows display depth of 32 bits per pixel winWindowProc - WM_SIZE - new client area w: 1902 h: 983 winFinishScreenInitFB - Masks: 00ff0000 0000ff00 000000ff MIT-SHM extension disabled due to lack of kernel support
    – Fish4203
    Jun 12, 2017 at 20:19

2 Answers 2


To run the the Xserver with the window manager in cygwin use:


and if you need to disable the WGL accelerator

startxwin -- -nowgl

See https://x.cygwin.com/docs/ug/using.html#using-starting for details.



libGL error: Screen is not Windows-DRI capable

indicates that we wanted to use direct, hardware-accelerated OpenGL ('Windows-DRI'), but that the server didn't allow it.

This could be due to:

  • server option -nowgl
  • windowing mode doesn't permit wgl (i.e. not -multiwindow)
  • display driver does not support WGL (i.e. the default VGA driver)


More info.

Try run with -multiwindow:

xinit gnome-session -- -multiwindow
  • it just does the same thing except in a smaller window
    – Fish4203
    Jun 12, 2017 at 20:25
  • Try with -nowgl: xinit gnome-session -- -multiwindow -nowgl Jun 12, 2017 at 20:27
  • still, doesn't work I can boot into Xorg
    – Fish4203
    Jun 13, 2017 at 0:40
  • this is the error i get when i run gnome-session from within x $ gnome-session gnome-session-binary: PID 11044: WARNING: Using null backend for session tracking Unable to init server: Could not connect to Connection refused
    – Fish4203
    Jun 13, 2017 at 0:47

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