ubuntu desktop ssh server enable

admin3 April 2024Last Update :

Unlocking Remote Access: Enabling SSH Server on Ubuntu Desktop

ubuntu desktop ssh server enable

Ubuntu, a popular choice for both desktop and server environments, is lauded for its simplicity and robustness. One of the powerful features it offers is the ability to remotely manage machines using Secure Shell (SSH). In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the process of enabling an SSH server on an Ubuntu desktop, ensuring secure and efficient remote access.

Understanding SSH and Its Importance

SSH, or Secure Shell, is a network protocol that provides administrators with a secure way to access a remote computer. It is widely used by system administrators for managing systems and applications remotely, allowing them to log into another computer over a network, execute commands in a remote machine, and move files from one machine to another.

Encryption provides confidentiality and integrity of data over an insecure network such as the internet. Without SSH, if you were to log into a remote machine, your username, password, and all other data would be transmitted in clear text, making it susceptible to interception by hackers.

Prerequisites for Enabling SSH on Ubuntu Desktop

  • A machine running Ubuntu Desktop.
  • Sudo privileges or access to the root user account.
  • An active internet connection to download packages.
  • Basic knowledge of the terminal and command-line operations.

Step-by-Step Guide to Installing and Configuring SSH Server

Installation of OpenSSH Server

The first step in setting up an SSH server on your Ubuntu desktop is to install the OpenSSH package. OpenSSH is a free version of the SSH connectivity tools that users can use to perform remote operations securely. Here’s how you can install it:

sudo apt update
sudo apt install openssh-server

Once installed, the SSH service will start automatically. To verify that the service is running, you can use the following command:

sudo systemctl status ssh

Configuring SSH Server Settings

After installation, you might want to configure the SSH server to enhance security or change default options. The main configuration file for the SSH server is /etc/ssh/sshd_config. You can edit this file with a text editor of your choice; for example, using nano:

sudo nano /etc/ssh/sshd_config

Here are some common configurations you might consider:

  • Changing the default SSH port (Port 22) to a non-standard port.
  • Disabling root login over SSH (PermitRootLogin no).
  • Allowing only specific users to connect (AllowUsers your_username).
  • Using public key authentication instead of passwords.

After making changes, save the file and restart the SSH service to apply the new settings:

sudo systemctl restart ssh

Connecting to Your Ubuntu Desktop via SSH

With the SSH server set up and configured, you can now connect to your Ubuntu desktop from any computer with an SSH client. The basic syntax for connecting to an SSH server is:

ssh username@ip-address

Replace username with your actual username on the Ubuntu desktop and ip-address with the IP address of your Ubuntu machine.

Enhancing Security for Your SSH Server

Security should be a top priority when setting up an SSH server. Here are some additional steps you can take to secure your SSH server:

  • Use SSH keys instead of passwords for authentication.
  • Implement two-factor authentication.
  • Regularly update your server and SSH software.
  • Monitor SSH access and review logs frequently.
  • Limit the number of login attempts to prevent brute force attacks.

FAQ Section

How do I change the SSH port on my Ubuntu desktop?

To change the SSH port, edit the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file and modify the line that says Port 22 to your desired port number. Remember to restart the SSH service afterward.

Can I disable password authentication for SSH?

Yes, you can disable password authentication by editing the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file and setting PasswordAuthentication no. Ensure you have set up SSH key authentication before doing this.

Is it safe to enable SSH on my Ubuntu desktop?

Enabling SSH is generally safe if you follow best practices for securing your SSH server, such as using strong passwords, SSH keys, and changing default settings.


Setting up an SSH server on your Ubuntu desktop can greatly simplify remote management tasks while maintaining security. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can ensure a secure and efficient remote access environment for your Ubuntu system.

Remember to stay vigilant about security, keep your system updated, and regularly monitor access logs. With these precautions in place, your Ubuntu desktop will be well-equipped for secure remote connections.


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