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Setup Passwordless Login with PuTTY and Connect to Ubuntu 17.04 / 17.10

PuTTY is a free terminal emulator that supports various network protocols like Telnet, SSH, Rlogin and SCP. It’s probably the most use SSH terminal emulator available today.

It’s been around for a very, very long time. Although that are other terminal emulators with more features and lots of protocol support, PuTTY is always going to be the one for quick and easier connection.

This brief tutorial is going to show students and new users how to use PuTTY and connect to a SSH server on Ubuntu 17.04 / 17.10 without passwords. Passwordless authentication provides better security than the standard SSH authentication.

To connect to SSH server using PuTTY without passwords, follow the guide below.

To download PuTTY visit the download page below.

Download the following files to your desktop.

  • Putty.exe
  • Puttygen.exe

Once downloaded, double click PuTTY to open. When Windows prompts you to verify the file, choose to open without always warning.

To connect to a SSH server, type the IP address or hostname and click Open. It’s that easy. You’ll be prompted for a username and password before you’ll allowed to connect.

Setting up Passwordless PuTTY authentication.

To connect to a SSH server without passwords using PuTTY, double-click Puttygen on your desktop to open. Then click the Generate button to generate a public/private key pair for your system.

Wait for the process to compete. This may take a long time depending on the computer you’re using. After the key pair have been generated, save both the public and private key somewhere on the PC with easy access.


Next, open the public key file, then copy its content and connection to the SSH server. After connecting run the commands below to create a hidden .ssh file.

madir .ssh

After creating the folder, run the commands below to create the authorized_keys file and paste the public key you copied earlier and save the file.

nano ~/.ssh/authorized_keys

After saving the file, run the commands below to protect the file.

chmod go-rwx ~/.ssh ~/.ssh/authorized_keys

Now that the public key is added to the server, you can now configure PuTTY to always logon without passwords.

Open PuTTY again and under Connection, select Data and type the account name to use to always logon.

Next, under SSH, select Auth then browse and find the private key and select it.

Finally, go back to the session and type the sever IP, session name, then click Save.

This will save the session for later you. If everything is select correctly, you should be able to sign on to the SSH server without passwords.

Congratulations! You’ve just configure PuTTY to connect to SSH without passwords.


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