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  1. #1
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    do I need SSH account?

    hi
    I see some webhost offer SSH account in the hosting package.
    Can someone tell me what can I do with the SSH account?
    What are the typical scenarios where SSH is used?

    thanks in advance

  2. #2
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    From hostmonster website i get this:
    Problem
    How can I get SSH/Shell access on my account?

    Solution
    In order to enable SSH for your account, you must either fax or submit a ticket of a copy of your photo ID (i.e., driver’s license, passport, etc.).
    Why do they need ID to setup SSH?

  3. #3
    Hi,
    You will be able to access the account via an ssh client program using ssh command anyway i think you dont need this option since you don't have info about it, you could build your web presence without using any ssh command
    ArzNet.com
    Providing Hosting & Domain Reseller since 2001
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  4. #4
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    as E.Emile said u do not need it ,
    but some one need it if wanna sell something using secure connection

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by vinboy View Post
    From hostmonster website i get this:


    Why do they need ID to setup SSH?
    It's usual for a host to require some sort of ID (or at least a reason) before providing SSH access. This is just to keep track who gets access on their server in case something happens.

  6. #6
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    How do you otherwise upload your files onto your hosting account securely, as FTP pretty much transmits everything in plain text over the network? You probably don't need shell access, but you should still get it to use SFTP.

  7. #7
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    Well some people use SSH to upload files via the "wget" command this allowing you to say:

    Code:
    wget http://domain.com/file.zip
    This will download the file right to the server... Also, you can setup TeamSpeak with SSH, start stop services, extract rar, zip, ect...

    Need more info?
    Jason

  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by ante View Post
    as E.Emile said u do not need it ,
    but some one need it if wanna sell something using secure connection
    I disagree. Thats what ssl (https) is for.


    Quote Originally Posted by ylsy
    How do you otherwise upload your files onto your hosting account securely, as FTP pretty much transmits everything in plain text over the network? You probably don't need shell access, but you should still get it to use SFTP.
    You can use sftp without ssh access period. Just about any ftp client, using cuteftp as an example, supports sftp. I see absolutely no reason why you would need ssh access. Most server administrators reserve this specifically for themselves for administrative purposes only. SSH commands are far too powerful for clients who don't know what they are doing or those who don't know ssh commands.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by whmanaged View Post
    Well some people use SSH to upload files via the "wget" command this allowing you to say:

    Code:
    wget http://domain.com/file.zip
    This will download the file right to the server... Also, you can setup TeamSpeak with SSH, start stop services, extract rar, zip, ect...

    Need more info?
    Wow this seems pretty cool. So it's kind of like VPN without the root acccess.

  10. #10
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    I need it for setting up cron jobs.


  11. #11
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    Changing ownership of directories, searching files, partial backups and setting up symlinks are other things that control panels often can't do without SSH access. (Also secure file transfer and setting up cron jobs, as others have already mentioned.) Without SSH access you'll need to get support to do all these things for you, which takes time.

    There are disadvantages though. As well as the security risk, allowing SSH means it's easy to inadvertently use lots of CPU and get yourself banned.
    Phil McKerracher

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by vinboy View Post
    Wow this seems pretty cool. So it's kind of like VPN without the root acccess.
    There are soooo many things ssh can do. Most people have never even heard of it. And those that have, don't fully understand what else it can do.

  13. #13
    With SSH, you can easily upload a zip file and unzip it via SSH which is a lot faster uploading files one by one. Also, you could install alternative Softwares if your webhoster allows you to or permits you to.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by iastaff View Post
    You can use sftp without ssh access period.
    SFTP and SCP require SSH access, just not shell access. It's shell access (whether it's over SSH, telnet, or otherwise) that is usually the issue.
    Scott Burns, President
    BQ Internet Corporation
    Remote Rsync and FTP backup solutions
    *** http://www.bqbackup.com/ ***

  15. #15
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    Can you do the equivalent of mysqldump without ssh? Using phpmyadmin for example? Are they the same? Thanks.

  16. #16
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    All the control panels I've come across provide some way to download mysql contents without ssh. Really big ones might timeout and need help from support people though. Usually phpmyadmin is available - it's not the same.
    Phil McKerracher

  17. #17
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    thanks for your information

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwrunyon View Post
    I need it for setting up cron jobs.
    You can do this with cPanel there is a thing in there, you don't need SSH for cron jobs


    Quote Originally Posted by iastaff View Post
    There are soooo many things ssh can do. Most people have never even heard of it. And those that have, don't fully understand what else it can do.
    EXACTLY! Or they just don't know linux commands and don't feel like looking up stuff in a book to figure things out!

    Quote Originally Posted by vinboy View Post
    Wow this seems pretty cool. So it's kind of like VPN without the root acccess.
    Actually this is root unless you make a user account which is what you have to do (to be secure'er) its all linux commands so if you don't know how to "cd /folder/" and other types of commands I suggest not using SSH, but if you do know how to use linux commands I suggest finding a host to use this because it makes life so easy when you have tons of files to upload!
    Jason

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by whmanaged View Post
    You can do this with cPanel there is a thing in there, you don't need SSH for cron jobs
    You're making a pretty broad assumption that we all have cPanel.


  20. #20
    Yes, CPanel is your friend
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by 1Host View Post
    Yes, CPanel is your friend
    I disagree... I personally think the cPanel system does a lot of sucking, especially on the backend handling of domains.


  22. #22
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    Oh wow... The things I'd say the questions I'd ask... *sigh* if I felt like jumping off topic!

    What CP do you use dwrunyon? cPanel actually does a hell'of a good job with domains not sure when you last used it but its changed a lot..

    And I said cPanel because in this day of age I don't know anyone not using it, most clients ask for cPanel as its easier to maneuver.
    Jason

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by whmanaged View Post
    What CP do you use dwrunyon? cPanel actually does a hell'of a good job with domains not sure when you last used it but its changed a lot..
    About a month ago... and yes, the latest version.

    And I said cPanel because in this day of age I don't know anyone not using it
    There are MANY people not using it. I use 1&1's AWESOME custom panel.


  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by dwrunyon View Post
    I disagree... I personally think the cPanel system does a lot of sucking, especially on the backend handling of domains.
    lol. OK, exactly what do you mean here?
    Cpanel Hosting - Fast , Reliable, Stable, Secure - Since 1996
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  25. #25
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    I have ssh for my host and I use it mostly for sql backups. Also when my site got hacked it was easier for my to go in ssh and rm -rf my whole home folder then reupload a zipped copy of my data (faster since its 1 file) then with ssh I could extract it. So its very useful to have.

    But from a hoster's point of view its a big security risk, so not a lot of them offer it. In fact I'm reluctant to offer it myself if I do offer web hosting. I rather have people submit tickets for these things and I'll take care of it.

  26. #26
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    Red Squirrel is very correct to find a SSH from a host that allows it is nearly impossible as its not the most securest thing in the world!

    dwrunyon, that doesn't answer the question what CP do you use?
    Jason

  27. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by whmanaged View Post
    Red Squirrel is very correct to find a SSH from a host that allows it is nearly impossible
    Almost every host I've used offers it.

    dwrunyon, that doesn't answer the question what CP do you use?
    I hope you read your customer's support tickets better than you read my above post then... the answer is very clearly there.

    Quote Originally Posted by 1Host View Post
    lol. OK, exactly what do you mean here?
    I don't like having my domains as subdomains of a "main" domain, and for that matter I do not like having one "main domain". I do not like having my directory structure all being inside a "main domain's" directory... I like having each domain as its own entity with its own un "nested" folder. I also like being able to point my domain to any directory and to change the directory at will without having to remove the "add on" domain and then re-add.

    It is very sloppy to me to be able to access one domains contents as a subdomain and subsirectory of another domain. There is much more to this as well, but I don't care to write an essay on it. Original point being, I NEED ssh access to set up cron jobs, and thankfully I have it and am good to go.


  28. #28
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    I don't like having my domains as subdomains of a "main" domain, and for that matter I do not like having one "main domain". I do not like having my directory structure all being inside a "main domain's" directory... I like having each domain as its own entity with its own un "nested" folder. I also like being able to point my domain to any directory and to change the directory at will without having to remove the "add on" domain and then re-add.
    I don't disagree with your points but this is no longer an issue in cPanel 11. You can use any specified directory as the document root for a domain. (though, that isn't to say I'm a cPanel fan - I'm certainly not, for a multitude of reasons)

    Original point being, I NEED ssh access to set up cron jobs, and thankfully I have it and am good to go.
    Most control panels include functionality for setting up cron jobs directly inside the control panel itself, so I don't see how SSH access is required for that specifically.

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by layer0 View Post
    I don't disagree with your points but this is no longer an issue in cPanel 11. You can use any specified directory as the document root for a domain.
    Very good then... that was a BADLY needed change in my opinion. Evidently Hostgator is still not set up to take advantage of that particular bit of new functionality as I still had a "main" domain and sub setup with them about a month ago (using cPanel 11).

    (though, that isn't to say I'm a cPanel fan - I'm certainly not, for a multitude of reasons)
    Agreed... as I mentioned I have many more reasons for my distaste, just don't care to essay it all. To be blunt, I cannot stand cPanel, though I would deal with it if I needed to.

    Most control panels include functionality for setting up cron jobs directly inside the control panel itself, so I don't see how SSH access is required for that specifically.
    Mine does not, so access is required. Also, from the times I have used panel generated cron I didn't particularly care for it either... it would generate configs that weren't EXACTLY what I wanted, particularly with the times. Luckily when I tried a panel generated job I also had ssh access so I could check its results and see that it wasn't what I wanted and could directly make the changes as desired.


  30. #30
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    Thumbs up

    You definitely need SSH.

    You never know at what point you will need to securely upload/download a "sensitive" file.

  31. #31
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    Another thing that ssh is wonderful for is checking the loads on your server. If you ever visit your site and it loads slow, execute the top command and see if there is a high load going on.


  32. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by sweng View Post
    You definitely need SSH.

    You never know at what point you will need to securely upload/download a "sensitive" file.
    If the host's control panel is running over SSL (which it should be), then you could also use a file manager (if available) to upload the file.

    Quote Originally Posted by dwrunyon View Post
    Another thing that ssh is wonderful for is checking the loads on your server. If you ever visit your site and it loads slow, execute the top command and see if there is a high load going on.
    The same thing could be accomplished with PHP or any CGI-based script, so long as the web server itself is online. Control panels will also often display this information.

    The point I'm trying to make is not that SSH isn't advantageous to have, but that many of the advantages listed in this thread aren't limited to just SSH and can be accomplished in other ways. I suppose the main advantage to SSH is convenience (especially for advanced users) and not necessarily functionality.
    Last edited by layer0; 05-10-2008 at 06:56 PM.

  33. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by layer0 View Post
    The same thing could be accomplished with PHP or any CGI-based script, so long as the web server itself is online. Control panels will also often display this information.
    In real time and with as much detail?

    The point I'm trying to make is not that SSH isn't advantageous to have, but that many of the advantages listed in this thread aren't limited to just SSH and can be accomplished in other ways. I suppose the main advantage to SSH is convenience (especially for advanced users) and not necessarily functionality.
    "From my cold, dead hands" as they say!


  34. #34
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    In real time and with as much detail?
    Sure, if you like top, just create a script that executes:

    Code:
    /usr/bin/top -bc -n 1
    You don't actually need SSH access to do that.

    It isn't going to be real-time, but then again, it isn't "true" real time via SSH either as it's still updating on a certain interval (e.g. 3 seconds) which can be compared to simply refreshing a page (maybe add a meta refresh to the page).

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by whmanaged View Post
    Well some people use SSH to upload files via the "wget" command this allowing you to say:

    Code:
    wget http://domain.com/file.zip
    This will download the file right to the server... Also, you can setup TeamSpeak with SSH, start stop services, extract rar, zip, ect...

    Need more info?
    You can't start and stop service unless you are root. If you're just a normal user, you can't stop anything that's being run by root or another user, and installation of anything is limited to your own homedirectory.

    Also, another guy said that ssh is the only way to securely upload / download a file. Most cpanel-based hosts offer ftp over ssl which operates completely separate from ssh/sftp.


    I really like threads like this, because it's an easy way of telling which hosts actually know what they're talking about. So far, this thread's been chock full of misinformation from a few people who clearly have no idea what they're doing. Maybe I should start a quote index and reference the urls of the posters.

  36. #36
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    Quote Originally Posted by iastaff View Post
    I disagree. Thats what ssl (https) is for.




    You can use sftp without ssh access period. Just about any ftp client, using cuteftp as an example, supports sftp. I see absolutely no reason why you would need ssh access. Most server administrators reserve this specifically for themselves for administrative purposes only. SSH commands are far too powerful for clients who don't know what they are doing or those who don't know ssh commands.
    Do you know what SFTP is? SFTP is where FTP that uses SSH for a secure connection. FTPS uses a SSL to connect securly!
    Charles

  37. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by dwrunyon View Post
    I need it for setting up cron jobs.
    With most control panels now days you DOTN'T need SSH access to setup a cron job.
    You can setup a cron job is most control panels.
    Charles

  38. #38
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    Quote Originally Posted by ub3r View Post
    You can't start and stop service unless you are root. If you're just a normal user, you can't stop anything that's being run by root or another user, and installation of anything is limited to your own homedirectory.

    Also, another guy said that ssh is the only way to securely upload / download a file. Most cpanel-based hosts offer ftp over ssl which operates completely separate from ssh/sftp.


    I really like threads like this, because it's an easy way of telling which hosts actually know what they're talking about. So far, this thread's been chock full of misinformation from a few people who clearly have no idea what they're doing. Maybe I should start a quote index and reference the urls of the posters.
    Yea I start to wonder about a host that doesn't know what they are talking about and gives bad information. hmmm
    Charles

  39. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neosmith View Post
    Do you know what SFTP is? SFTP is where FTP that uses SSH for a secure connection. FTPS uses a SSL to connect securly!
    Hmm. Not really. SFTP is SSH's own file transport protocol has nothing to do with FTP (aka RFC959).

    FTPS on the other hand is FTP + SSL or TLS (depending on the invocation), which *might* provide secure data transfer over FTP (if the hosts provide it with strong enough cryptography). However IMHO it is often more troublesome to set up than SFTP due to the inherit issue with FTP which requires a second data channel. There are also implementations that only encrypt the control session but not the data session.

    The only redeeming value for FTP over SFTP in my opinion is the ease to set up jailed access. It is not impossible with SFTP, but with FTP servers it is just so much easier. And yes, SFTP *REQUIRES* SSH access, but not shell access. However with shell access it just opens up many more ways to upload files efficiently and securely. Rsync? Unison? To the one saying via CP's web interface over HTTPS is functionally equivalent -- yeah right. I am sure riding a push bike backwards can be a fun and challenging way to travel around the world as well

  40. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by ylsy View Post
    To the one saying via CP's web interface over HTTPS is functionally equivalent -- yeah right. I am sure riding a push bike backwards can be a fun and challenging way to travel around the world as well
    For uploading mass data, of course it's not equivalent, but the original poster (whom I quoted) stated:

    You never know at what point you will need to securely upload/download a "sensitive" file.
    For uploading a single file, or even several files, using the control panel isn't a bad solution at all. For instance, let's say you need to transfer a configuration file for your application and it contains sensitive information such as your DB name, user, pass, etc. You can transfer everything else via plain FTP and simply upload this portion via the control panel.

    To further clarify my points, I do believe that SSH access is very convenient to have, but it's not an absolute necessity if alternatives for common functions are available, and from what I've seen it's usually only the more tech-savvy customers who will make use of it - whether that is significant or not depends on the web host's target market.
    Last edited by layer0; 05-11-2008 at 09:31 PM.

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