SSh with public-key authentication on Debian Etch

Discussion in 'HOWTO-Related Questions' started by lordshadow, Apr 9, 2008.

  1. lordshadow

    lordshadow New Member


    I'm having problems logging into my server via ssh from my linux workstation!

    sshd_config file is setup fine and I can login from Windows boxes using Bitvise Tunnerlier SSH client.

    I created authorized_keys file in Bitvise Tunnelier with no passphrase then copied to server and tested from all Windows boxes after shutting down password authentication and no problem it works fine.

    However I took the authorized_keys file and copied it to my linux box and called it rsa_id. Then when I tried ssh'ing the server it asked me for a passphrase and didn't let me proceed!!

    What have I done wrong?

    Also without creating a new key is there a way to create a passphrase on the already made authorized_keys file?

    Thanks in advance
  2. falko

    falko Super Moderator ISPConfig Developer

    Simply copying the authorized_keys file doesn't work. You must copy the key as well.
  3. lordshadow

    lordshadow New Member

    Thanks for replying!

    I guess one way I could've done this is by exporting the key created in the windows ssh client and using that, but since it wasn't in format I would've had a problem.

    However I created a new key like in the tutorial (ssh-keygen -t rsa) with a passphrase and fed that into the authorized_keys file (cat >> authorized_keys).

    After that it worked!
  4. bpence

    bpence New Member

    Right. The authorized_keys file has ONLY the public keys. In order to authenticate from your linux workstation, the workstation would need the private key generated by Tunnelier.

    By creating another key for the Linux workstation, you now have multiple key pairs to manage. It may be possible for tunnelier to use the private key you created with ssh-keygen if it recognizes the format. Then, you could at least reduce back down to a single key pair.

    Brian Pence
    Celestial Software
    AbsoluteTelnet (for ssh and telnet on Windows )

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