Access a computer over unstable networks with Secure Shell (SSH). The command-line SSH client is an important, built-in feature of the Mac operating system. Use SSH to manage applications and operating systems remotely to include logging in, transporting files, and executing commands.

SSH implementations consist of ssh, scp, and slogin utilities. SSH is encrypted with Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) which makes the remote communications more secure. There are several SSH client options for Mac users, and mainly to secure communication between the local system and the host. This tutorial will show you how to SSH client on Mac.

Access SSH Client on Mac with Terminal

SSH is an open protocol and also a source of security for administrators who deal with information security, IT, and managing SSH clients remotely. The user may access the SSH client on Mac in order to initiate a connection with a remote host.

1. Make sure you have enabled SSH access on your computer. If you haven’t, go to Apple > System Preferences > Internet and Networking. Click on the Sharing icon to run it. A list will appear. In the list, check the Remote Login option. You can now use your username for remote logins.

2. Make sure you have the remote username and the remote server IP ready to use.

SSH is typically invoked in Terminal. Access the SSH client on Mac by following these steps:

1. Open Finder, and then go to Applications > Utilities > Terminal.

2. Or, you can access Terminal by using Spotlight. Press the Command + Spacebar shortcut keys. When the Spotlight search box appears, type Terminal.

3. Once the Terminal window is open, type this basic SSH command:

ssh hostname

or, type this:

ssh [email protected]

Access SSH Client on Mac with Graphical User Interface

You can also access the SSH using a graphical interface:

1. Go to Terminal

New Remote Connection

2. Select New Remote Connection. Or, if you have the Terminal app on your dock, right click on the Terminal icon and select New Remote Connection

3. A graphical dialogue box will open requesting the user name and which host to connect to. Enter the credential.

You may use SSH Client on Mac to connect to any other host that is running an SSH server. You connect to a cloud server from a Linux system or from a Mac by using SSH and then running shell commands.

Note: Terminal supports the SSH connections to remote servers. You can identify other computers without the general interaction requirements.

Connect to a Remote Host Using Terminal

The administrator or network administrator may have reason to access a remote system from the home computer. It may be that you want to access files on the remote computer. You can access a remote host by using the command line in Terminal. To do so, type the following command:

ssh [email protected]

Press Return to execute the command. This command will prompt the client to try to connect to the server named with the User ID UserName (this just as an example…replace with your domain). On the first attempt to connect, the user will have to provide the remote host public key fingerprint. When this information is provided, the user will receive this prompt to connect:

The authenticity of host cannot be established.

DSA key fingerprint is

01:24:67: cd: ef: ff: ef: ba: cc: 94: 76: 32: 10

Are you sure you want to continue connecting (yes/no)?

If you select yes, the session will continue. The host key will be stored in the local known_hosts file, which is located in the user home directory. If you select no, the attempt to connect will be terminated.

Log in to the remote server by entering the user account password you are logged in to. You are now logged in remotely by SSH. You can perform administrative functions on the remote machine with the remote access. If you have problems logging in, try to log in while you are logged in to the Emergency Console and see if there is a notation for a log in problem in the log. When you want to break the remote connection, simply type exit in the command line to disconnect.

Note: When the user incorporates a username and passcode as authenticators on a local system to the remote host, these credentials may be seen by malicious users who can access the source code.

Contact Apple Support

SSH client is basically an advanced feature for administrators, network administrators, and such who are experienced with working with remote computers. If you weren’t able to SSH client on your Mac after following the steps in this tutorial, you can contact Apple Support for more help.