Secure communications to this server are provided through the SSH protocall. In order to work on this server, you will need to generate an SSH key (preferably SSH2-RSA), and send the public key to Aaron at to allow access.
PLEASE put a passphrase on keys used to access this server.

All users will need to know how to generate SSH keys, and send the public key to me. However, there are many ways to do this, and most of the people who are needing this guide are Windows users, so I will only go into exhaustive detail on the use of my favorite Windows client.

Guide to using VNC over an ssh tunnel.

Microsoft Clients

My current favorite windows client for ssh is WinSCP. I recommend installing it with the Explorer interface. When you do this it looks almost just like a windows explorer window opened on the remote machine. You can drag-and-drop files back and forth between WinSCP and a regular explorer window.

In order to generate a key for this client, run the puttygen program included in the above setup package, and available from the start menu entry for WinSCP3.

  1. Select SSH2 RSA, for at least 1024 bits.
  2. Press
  3. Change comment to the name you want to use to refer to this key.
  5. Use a text editor, perhaps Notepad, to open a file named <comment from 3>.pub, and cut and paste the data from the window into this file (and save it)
  6. Use the
    Save Private Key
    button to save the private key to a file like <comment from 3>.ppk
  7. Save the public key too, if you wish.
    I can use these keys, but I have to hack them to look like the data in the window, which is kind of a pain for me. However, other servers may accept public keys in this format.
  8. Mail the .pub key file to Aaron.

Now you can create a new session on WinSCP for

Save this session definition.

now you can select this definition, and open a connection to this server. You SHOULD have defined a passphrase... so it should make a pop-up asking for this passphrase before connecting. If not... PLEASE put a passphrase on your key.

Cygwin ssh/scp/ssh-keygen/ssh-agent
I usually use Cygwin on my windows machines, which has a port of the standard OpenBSD OpenSSH suite, which is the same as described below for UN*X systems.

putty/ pscp/ puttygen
  • If you can work from the command line, the putty suite is a minimalist implementation (small executables) and works well.

    See the above WinSCP section for instructions on how to generate keys using puttygen.

    The main program of interest for those wishing to upload/download from this server is pscp. This command line program can be used to copy files to and from this server. Download pscp (above) and save it to a location on your command path. Use a location like C:\WINNT\System32. Typical usage will look like:

        C:\> cd Documents and Settings\Default\My Documents
        C:\Documents and Settings\Default\My Documents> pscp .
    to retrieve myTarball.tar.gz from this server. To upload a file to this server, the command might look like:
        C:\WINNT\Temp> pscp
    As you can see above, you will need to know the location of files and folders on this server to use this protocall. If these locations were not provided to you by a user of this server, you can use the telnet-like application, putty, to examine the contents of this server.

    I used to recommend iXplorer, but it seems to have gone commercial, and I have had trouble installing it on XP.

    Click on Remote --> Add SSH Host and add the host with the appropriate user, usually guest. Then you can browse your local disk(s) on the left, and the server on the right. Use the left and right arrows to transfer files.

    Other Windows clients:

  • UN*X

    For UN*X I recommend the OpenSSH suite. The scp program can be used to copy files, and works much like the Windows pscp program. The ssh program can be used for shell access, and is a superset of the capabilities provided by the Windows putty program.


    OS X has the same OpenSSH suite as UN*X from the command line. If you prefer a graphical interface, I recommend fugu.

    Aaron Birenboim
    Last modified: Tue Aug 29 06:38:11 MDT 2006