After its original run with members Shawn Michaels, Hunter Hearst Helmsley (later known simply as Triple H), Chyna, and Rick Rude, the group expanded to become a mainstay of the Attitude Era with new additions like X-Pac, The New Age Outlaws (Road Dogg and Billy Gunn), Kane and Tori until it disbanded in August 2000.

On October 6, 1997, in one of the earliest DX promos — in fact the week before the group was officially named — Michaels alluded to this off-screen connection.

After Bret Hart claimed to have destroyed the Kliq and to have "run [Scott Hall and Kevin Nash] outta town" (that is, from the WWF to the rival WCW/n Wo), Michaels declared, "The Kliq owns this [professional wrestling] business", and said that it had really undergone "expansion" rather than "destruction".

On episodes of Raw Is War in April and May DX went to war with WCW, with whom the WWF were in direct competition at the time, through a series of legitimate visits to WCW headquarters and live events.

On April 27, 1998 Raw Is War and Nitro both took place in the Hampton Roads area of Virginia, a mere 19 miles apart.

At the end of the match, Tyson turned on D-Generation X and cost Michaels the match.

The night after Wrestle Mania, Triple H ejected the absent Michaels for "dropping the ball" over the Tyson incident (In reality, Michaels had suffered a back injury during his Casket Match with The Undertaker at the Royal Rumble, and started a four-year hiatus from wrestling to recuperate).

Although DX and the members of the Hart Foundation continued to battle on-screen in some fashion through the end of 1997, the Bret Hart-Shawn Michaels feud ended abruptly at Survivor Series when Michaels won his third WWF World Heavyweight Championship via the Montreal Screwjob, whereby Hart was lied to about the match's pre-determined outcome after he (Hart) had signed with WCW and refused to drop the WWF Title before he left the company the following day.

Rude was also legitimately upset over the Montreal Screwjob, and he subsequently left DX and the WWF to return to WCW.

Michaels would eventually face the Undertaker at Ground Zero: In Your House on September 7 with Triple H, Chyna and Rude all interfering on Michaels' behalf to make the match end in a no contest.

They were often shown on television practicing sophomoric/crude humor and rebelling against authority figures in the company, primarily Vince Mc Mahon (then an on-air color commentator) and then Commissioner Sgt.

During this time, they feuded with the heel gimmick of The Rock and his group the Nation of Domination and then later, Vince Mc Mahon's Corporation.