Home » LTSP – A Thin Client Solution for Linux Operating Systems

LTSP – A Thin Client Solution for Linux Operating Systems

The Linux Terminal Server Project(LTSP) is a group that designs the software and hardware of a thin client(an X Terminal) that runs Linux. Linux Terminal Server Project machines are an open-source terminal solution that can offer computer access to a large number of people at less price.

The Linux Terminal Server Project is a registered trademark of Diskless Workstations.com, LLC. Nowadays, LTSP machines are utilized all over the world. Primarily, they are used by the community and educational organizations that gain advantage from their small footprint, easier maintenance, and low cost.

Legacy PCs and new thin clients alike can be used to create documents, send e-mail, browse the web, and run various other desktop applications. LTSP offers enhanced value over traditional computing solutions and improves TCO(Total Cost of Ownership).

LTSP workstations are capable of running applications from windows and Linux servers. Linux based thin clients are highly reliable because viruses and tampering are virtually non-existent.

LTSP is becoming more famous in schools as it enables them to provide students with access to computers without upgrading or purchasing expensive desktop machines. Enhancing access to computers involves less cost because the thin clients can be older computers that cannot run a full desktop operating system.

Even a CPU that is relatively slow with 128 MB of RAM can provide remarkable performance as a thin client. Additionally, the utilization of centralized computing resources implies more performance can be obtained at very less cost via upgrades to a single server instead of upgrading a fleet of computers.

By converting present computers into thin clients, an educational institution can also obtain more control over how their students are making use of computing resources because all the user sessions can be monitored on the server.

In its present form(v5.x), Linux Terminal Server Project depends on distributions for integrating the Linux Terminal Server Project architecture into their products respectively. LTSP was an add-on package to any distribution in the v4.x series. Various distributions integrate Linux Terminal Server Project either into their machine(Debian, Ubuntu) or as a different product, like KIWI-LTSP(SUSE), Skolelinux(Debian), K12LTSP(CentOS), and Edubuntu(Ubuntu).         

Advantages of LTSP

An LTSP thin client offers many advantages to a company. Below here are the reasons why you should choose LTSP.

Decreased Costs

The entire software for workstations develops on the LTSP server in an LTSP thin client environment. When you are installing new thin client devices or repurposing old desktop PCs, LTSP can be a crucial component in decreasing the costs that are related to your computing environment.

Less Maintenance

From a single point of control, LTSP enables you to maintain your whole computer network; from the OS image on the thin clients via file storage and authentication. By decreasing your software footprint with LTSP, support and maintenance obligations are decreased when compared with conventional desktop PC computing solutions.

No Licensing Fees

LTSP is an open source software and is released under the GPLv2 License. No cost is involved in downloading and using LTSP.


Since its origin in 1999, the LTSP community has been very active. Fueled by experimentation and participation, the users of LTSP have deployed it in every imaginable scenario possible; starting from running an irrigation system to providing their organization, a thin client computing solution in order to replace desktop PCs. Even if you are using LTSP, contributing to the LTSP community will improve your experience.


Today, security has become a key challenge for admins. Linux Terminal Server Project thin client connections can be secured through SSH and are restricted to a LAN, making sure that you are operating a safe and manageable computing environment. The LTSP model safeguards your systems from spyware and viruses.

Linux Terminal Server Solutions

Linux Terminal Server Solutions are robust, flexible and customizable. They are capable of offering a variety of desktop environments using VDI, LTSP, RDP, and other client-server software solutions.

Linux Desktops


  • Standard LTSP Configuration.
  • Linux Desktop Environment.
  • Applications on LTSP Server.

Windows Desktops


  • Windows Desktop Environment.
  • Remote Desktop / RemoteApp.
  • LTSP Delivers RDP Session.

Virtual Desktops

  • Virtual Desktop Environment.
  • Local and Virtual Applications.
  • LTSP Delivers VDI Session.

The professional services, products, and support related to LTSP are available from 3 companies namely Diskless Workstations, CyberOrg Info, and Hellenic Schools Technical Support Team. For many years, the LTSP Discuss mailing list has been in use and offers many useful tips and tricks for real-life deployment scenarios and examples.