Generating SSH keys

Creating SSH Keys on macOS, Linux, or UNIX

On the macOS, Linux, or UNIX operating systems, you use the ssh-keygen command to create an SSH public key and SSH private key also known as a key-pair.

To create SSH keys on a macOS, Linux, or UNIX operating system

  1. On macOS, Linux, or UNIX operating systems, open a command terminal.

  2. At the prompt, enter the following command:

key_name is the SSH key-pair file name.

The following shows an example of the ssh-keygen output.

3. Navigate to the file and open it.

4. Copy the text and paste it in SSH public key.

When you run the ssh-keygen command as shown preceding, it creates the public and private keys as files in the current directory.

Creating SSH Keys on Microsoft Windows:

Windows uses a slightly different SSH key-pair format. The public key must be in the PUB format, and the private key must be in the PPK format. On Windows, you can use PuTTYgen to create an SSH key-pair in the appropriate formats. You can also use PuTTYgen to convert a private key generated using ssh-keygen to a .ppk file.

If you present WinSCP with a private key file not in .ppk format, that client offers to convert the key into .ppk format for you.

For a tutorial on creating SSH keys using PuTTYgen on Windows, see the website.

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