Working With PuTTY

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Use the following instructions to set up SSH access from Windows using Putty.

If you don't already have it, download and install the complete suite of tools provided by PuTTY. You will need putty.exe, plink.exe, pscp.exe, and puttygen.exe. We recommend using the MSI installer, so you have all the necessary tools placed in a location where Wing can find them.

Logging in with Passwords

If you wish to authenticate using your password on the remote system, you can simply connect as follows and enter your password when prompted:

plink username@remotehost

In this case, you don't need any further configuration to prepare access to the remote host before using it with Wing. Wing will prompt you for your password as needed.

If using passwords does not work because of the way that sshd is configured on the remote system, or if you wish to increase the security of your connection, you may instead want to generate and use an SSH key pair as described below.

Generating an SSH Key Pair

If you don't already have an SSH key set up, you will need to generate one by running puttygen.exe, pressing the Generate button, providing the requested random input by moving your mouse over the blank area, entering and confirming a passphrase, and then saving both the public and private key files. The private key file is typically named id_rsa.ppk and the public key file is id_rsa.pub.

Moving the SSH Public Key to the Remote Host

Next paste the contents of the area labeled Public key for pasting into OpenSSH authorized_keys file in the puttygen window into a file that you will transfer to the remote host to add it to ~/.ssh/authorized_keys. If you didn't just generate a new key, you can instead start puttygen and load your existing key with the Load button. Then you can right-click to select all and then copy from the puttygen.exe window.

You may have to create the directory ~/.ssh on the remote system and/or the authorized_keys file within it. Note that the directory ~/.ssh must be readable only by the login user and no one else. Otherwise ssh refuses to use it. You can make sure it has the correct permissions with chmod 700 ~/.ssh.

Once this is done you should be able to connect to your remote system with:

plink -i \path\to\ide_rsa.ppk username@remotehost

You will be prompted for the passphrase to unlock your private key before the connection can be made. To avoid being prompted each time you connect, you can load your private key into PuTTY's SSH user agent as described below. This is not, however, a requirement for you to be able to use your SSH key to connect Wing to the remote host. Wing will prompt for the passphrase as needed.

Loading the SSH Private Key into the User Agent

Using the SSH user agent to store your private keys allows you to enter your passphrase to unlock the key just once. After that ssh can access the key as needed without having to prompt you again each time you connect.

To do this, run pageant.exe on Windows, right click on the small icon that appears in the lower right of your screen, select Add Key, and select your id_rsa.ppk private key file. The private key file can also be passed to pageant.exe on the command line. You will be prompted to enter the key's passphrase, if it is encrypted.

Note that you may need to restart pageant and load your key into it each time you restart Windows or log out and back in. Be sure to run pageant as the same user that is running Wing. For example, if run in a console that is running as Administrator then Wing will not be able to connect to pageant.

Now you should be able to connect to the remote host without having to specify the private key or enter a password as follows:

plink username@remotehost

Trouble-Shooting

The most common cause of problems in making this work is misconfiguration of OpenSSH on the remote host. OpenSSH will entirely ignore your .ssh directory if you do not chmod 700 .ssh to make its contents accessible only by its owner.

The .ssh directory must be in the home directory of the account used to connect to the remote host, and must be owned by that user. The home directory on the remote host is typically referred to as ~ and will be printed by echo ~ on the remote host.

In addition, the authorized_keys file must contain \n line delimiters and not Windows style \r\n newlines.

For more detail on solving SSH configuration problems, see How to Troubleshoot SSH Authentication Issues and How to Troubleshoot SSH Connectivity Issues.

Using a Non-Default SSH Port

If your remote server is running SSH on a non-default port, then you will also need to edit your SSH configuration on the host where the IDE is running to set that port. This is done by running putty, entering a host name or ip address and the port number to use, and saving that host name as a saved session (all on the initial Session tab). Once this is done, any connection to that host name, also if made from the command line or by Wing, will use the configured port.