A Cool SSH Security Tool

 
 
By Timothy Dyck  |  Posted 2001-01-29 Email Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Putty, Simon Tatham's quietly developed SSH client, has become one of my most often used tools over the past several months, particularly during eWeek Labs' ongoing Openhack III security test.

Putty, Simon Tathams quietly developed SSH client, has become one of my most often used tools over the past several months, particularly during eWeek Labs ongoing Openhack III security test. Secure Shell, a secure, remote-terminal protocol, is a basic tool for administering secure Unix-based systems, and I use it instead of Telnet whenever I can.

Putty is simplicity itself to use. Theres no install—just download the executable and run it—and it uses the X Window standard, left- and right-button, cut-and-paste commands that work so well in command-line environments.

In addition, Putty gained RSA public-key authentication in the fall, the one feature that had kept me using SSH Communications Securitys Secure Shell. Using keys is a better approach than using passwords because keys cant be guessed and provide a measure of physical security (you must have the key file on your system to log in).

Putty, pscp secure file transfer and key management tools are free for download and use (including commercial use), and the source code is available. The Windows-based software can be found at www.chiark.greenend.org.uk/~sgtatham/putty.

 
 
 
 
Timothy Dyck is a Senior Analyst with eWEEK Labs. He has been testing and reviewing application server, database and middleware products and technologies for eWEEK since 1996. Prior to joining eWEEK, he worked at the LAN and WAN network operations center for a large telecommunications firm, in operating systems and development tools technical marketing for a large software company and in the IT department at a government agency. He has an honors bachelors degree of mathematics in computer science from the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, and a masters of arts degree in journalism from the University of Western Ontario in London, Ontario, Canada.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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