Secure Shell (SSH) is a UNIX-based and protocol for securely getting access to a remote computer. Connecting with an SSH client provides a command line interface to manage and configure the operating system. When you use SSH to connect to your server both ends of the client/server connections are authenticated using a digital certificates, and passwords are protected by being encrypted.
Getting an SSH client
When connecting to your Linux server from a Microsoft Windows desktop PC, you'll need to download an SSH client. By far the most popular SSH client is PuTTY. PuTTY is free software licensed under the opensource guidelines. You can use your favorite search engine to search for a downloadable version of PuTTY.exe or you can download it directly from the maintainer's web site.
Downloading the Putty Suite of software will allow you to create and use SSH keys when connecting to your server, but for this demonstration all you need is Putty.exe. Once you have downloaded the software, execute PuTTY.exe and you will be presented with the standard Putty connection window.
Connecting to your server
Once the PuTTY window launches, enter the details provided for your server. Enter the IP address into the "Host Name" field. Ensure the radial button marked SSH is selected. You can enter a name in the "Saved Sessions" filed and click "Save" to keep this session for later.
Once the details is entered, click "Open" and you should be presented with an SSH key warning, which if this is the first time you are connecting to this host "yes" would be the correct reply. The command line login screen is the next screen you can access.
In the command line windows presented, enter the user name provided with your server details. This will normally be "root", unless you're connecting to FreeBSD or additional security has been applied. Press enter after you type the user name then type the password provided when prompted for the password. Unlike when entering your username, you will not see the characters or any indication that you are typing anything, this is all hidden for security.
If all went well you are now logged in to your Linux server.
If you were presented with the password prompt a second time, try retyping your password, if you're still not successful, contact your server provider for more assistance.
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