HSX – an hotline server for unix


HSX is available under GPL. If you want to contribute, you can:

  • help develop: write some pieces of code, add or debug features.
  • help document: HSX documentation is probably not the best. Considering adding to or/and rewriting the current online documentation, even a single paragraph or a FAQ are useful.

Latest HSX version is 3.58.00 (2001/06/03). CHANGES can be read here.

I. What is HSX

GHX is a clone of a mac software (AFAIK) gathering in one program FTP, IRC and NEWS like functions using a proprietary protocol.

HSX stands for Hotline Server for UniX.

HSX is free however, if you use it regularly and want to support its development, you can send a small fee. Support HSX to keep it free.

II. What is not HSX

HSX is not based on hxd. HSX has been written from scratch using our experience of hotline protocol.

III. HSX functions

Here is a list of supported functions.

  • Tracker functions:
    • multiple tracker registration (upto 32 trackers at the same time).
    • password protected tracker.
  • User management functions:
    • create/modify/delete accounts.
    • each account can have a root directory.
    • account rights is available.
    • kick supported (ban not yet available).
  • News functions:
    • news post and news read.
    • Random news to display a news randomly extract from a set of news.
    • Mix-news: combine random news and standard news.
    • Both normal and threaded news are supported.
  • Files functions:
    • Automagically generated/updated directory cache. Useful with huge directory tree.
    • Limited simultaneous downloads (if admin wants this).
    • download/upload supported.
    • directory management: create, delete, move.
    • Comment file or directory is not yet available.
    • Resume on upload and download.
  • Chat & private message:
    • Private messages are supported.
    • Private and public chats are supported.


  • Protocol extension:
    • Mailbox:
      • Each account can have a mailbox.
    • Encryption:
      • Users can encrypt their symetric or asymetric connexion on request using a DES like encryption scheme.
        From 8 to 72 bits encryption key.
    • Fast download protocol to enhance transfer speed with or without data compression
      (zlib required).
    • New account structure:
      • Access control list.
      • KB quota.
      • File quota.
      • Graphical configuration through GHX plugin.
    • Remote server monitoring through GHX plugin.
    • Download group of files.
    • File preview for pictures.


  • Misc functions:
    • Banner support.
    • Log support.
    • Drop boxes.
    • Download control policy.
    • Graphical configuration through GHX plugin.
    • Transfer speed limitation.

IV. Available versions

The link in the table refers a tar gzipped archive. This archive contains the server itself, the minimal directory structure and files to quickly run your site.

Currently, HSX is only available is the following version:


OS CPU library Version
Linux i386 glibc2.2 (built on Mandrake 8.0), zlib, gtk 1.2, Imlib2 required 3.58.00 (2001/06/03)
glibc2 (built on redhat 5.1), zlib required 99/09/05
libc5 (built on redhat 4.2), zlib required 3.21 (2000/01/07)
PPC n/a (built on linux PPC) 98/12/03
Last version, newer version won’t be available
HP-UX HP/PA Risc n/a (built on a HP 9000/782) 99/01/30
FreeBSD 3.2 i386 n/a 99/05/22


HSX 3.28 and above Plugin toolkit is here (version 2000/11/12). Other versions may come if enough request only. You should also read the online manual for more information.

V. Sources

HSX sources are also available here. If you build an archive for a not yet supported architecture and think this archive can be useful to some users, we can put it on this web site.

VI. Known bugs

In version 2001/02/28 and before, clients may hang after deleting a file. Upgrade to 2001/03/03 or later.

In all versions until 99/04/02, if you use old style accounts and have a default account (********), there is a security hole. Upgrade to 99/04/03 version or later.

In version 99/01/30 and before, the server refuses to save mails if they don’t contain a subject. Bug is fixed in future version.

In version 98/12/02 and before, the agreement file is not read from hsx root directory, this is fixed in 98/12/03 version.

In version 98/09/27 and before, a bug exists if you create an account without password (like guest account). To avoid the problem, after account creation, edit the account file and clear the 3rd line content (don’t remove the line, only its content).

In version 98/09/28 and before, 2 bugs exist:

  • If your server receives a news request and the news file is empty or doesn’t exist, HSX crashes. This bug is already fixed in the future version
  • HSX regularly creates a zombie (every 5 minutes approximately). This zombie comes from tracker registration update process. This should be fixed soon.