How to install Xvfb on Ubuntu

X virtual framebuffer abbreviated as Xvfb is designed for Unix/ Linux Operating System. It allows you to execute graphical apps without having to use a monitor by connecting some input device. Virtual memory is used to perform graphical operations and it allows the program to run headlessly.

It is especially designed for Linux systems and in this article, we will discuss its installation and working on Ubuntu (Linux OS). If you wanted to run your browsers headlessly then follow the procedure below:

Installation of Xvfb on Ubuntu

To get Xvfb on Ubuntu follow given below steps:

Step 1: Installation of Xvfb :First you need to install Xvfb by below mentioned command:

$ sudo apt install xvfb

Step 2: Installation of Browsers : Now you need to download some browses, you can download any browser, here I will download chrome and Firefox browser on Ubuntu System:

Installation of Firefox

Now we need to install Firefox, in most of the system it is installed by default but needs to be upgraded, so the Firefox browser on my system is also installed by default it will just get upgraded. Now run the below mentioned in Ubuntu terminal command to install:

$ sudo apt-get install firefox

Step 4: Testing of Xvfb: To test whether xvfb is installed/working properly, run the below mentioned command to check the status of xvfb process:

$ ps -ef | grep xvfb

So, the result shows that it is properly installed on the system, now you can use it without any problem.

Step 3: Working of Xvfb: Xvfb allows you to run browsers/tests in the background without showing their processing. Use the below mentioned syntax for running/testing programs headlessly:

$ xvfb-run [options] [command]

For instance, below I am running Firefox using xvfb by the below mentioned command, it will open in the background and nothing will appear on screen.

$ xvfb-run firefox http://google.com

To get more information about this command, you can use help command with this command, run the below mentioned command to know more about its usage:

$ xvfb-run --help


Xvfb, referred to as X virtual framebuffer, allows you to run programs in background headlessly without showing actual processing. It is useful to run tests without opening an unrequited window. In this writeup I provide the procedure for installation and testing of xvfb on Ubuntu (Linux OS) and after installation I also elaborate on its working system.

About the author

Alishba Iftikhar

I am currently an undergraduate student in my 1st year. I am an internee author with Linuxhint and loved learning the art of technical content writing from senior authors. I am looking forward to opting my career as a full time Linux writer after I graduate.