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After running comsol matlab for my job as a research assistant, I've found a need for something akin to xvfb that I can keep in my personal files. This is because, if an X display exists, then comsol will want access to it (and will close if it goes away--ie, with a logout). I solved this problem by using ssh without tunnelling X, but I think having something like xvfb would be nice! (Or, xpra, but xvfb is a dependency) Unfortunately, both xvfb and xpra are kind of a pain in the butt to install as a user without special privlileges.
SO, I grabbed a compiled copy of Xvnc from the TigerVNC people, studied vncserver (a perl script) and tried to grab the tiny part I needed (:1*, basically), and some X11 fonts. Note that I don't really need a way to access the display---if that's what you want, you should probably just download and ./config && make && make prefix=/home/you/wherever install in the unix/ folder of TigerVNC's distribution (or figure out xvfb and/or xpra). Also, download their compiled copy of Xvnc, since their README suggests building it's a pain.
Anyways: You can start the server by running ./pxvncfb (portable X vnc framebuffer XD), and run programs on it like so:
DISPLAY=:1 programz0r
Pretty much everything else is probably as you'd expect.
* Note: I assumed DISPLAY:1 would be open, for now. I might have to look at vncserver a bit more closely, y'know?