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Old 01-09-2013, 10:09 AM   #1
Registered: Jun 2007
Posts: 164

Rep: Reputation: 18
Remote ssh login (passwords useless), and local login (using password)

How can I set up my ubuntu account so I can login remotely using ssh using only a keygen block like:
ssh -i mysecret.pem myself@myIPAddress
I assume mysecret.pem is a private key on my laptop while far far away.

and locally WITH a password such that it is never possible to login remotely using that password without the keyblock?

I'll probably set up a nonstandard ssh port so I'll need to modify an ssh config file somewhere in my machine to listen (also?) on that nonstandard port. My firewall would forward only that nonstandard port.

Or is there something I don't understand about keys?
Old 01-09-2013, 01:30 PM   #2
Registered: Mar 2006
Location: Tennessee, USA
Distribution: Debian, Ubuntu
Posts: 135

Rep: Reputation: 36
Normally what I do is create a key on my remote system, like so:

ssh-keygen -t rsa
If you want no-password, don't specify a passcode here; though it's fair to warn that this is considered bad security by the people who consider such things.

Next, I copy it up to my (password-enabled) ssh server:
ssh-copy-id -i ~/.ssh/ someremoteserver
After that's done, you should be able to login via ssh from that specific device (or any other device to which you've copied without a password.

Now you lock down ssh so that it doesn't accept passwords. In /etc/ssh/sshd_config on the server:
PasswordAuthentication no
Restart ssh and you're done. This is no way affects the way local console logins work; they'll continue to accept passwords as normal.


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