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I've set up a passwordless login to a friend's computer and everything works very well.

I've even edited my ~/.ssh/config to add his hostname and my username.

So I just type ssh friend and it connects... but every time I log out (and back in) before running ssh friend, I'm asked for my passphrase.

Is there a way to avoid this? I tried with ssh-add but it also locks on log-out.

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4 Answers 4

up vote 1 down vote accepted

You can remove the password from your key file, but of course that's not very safe...

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Hum, yeah i thinks that isn't very secure or recommended but i guess it's my only option, there's anyway to do that for my actual key ? –  Diego Garcia Oct 27 '10 at 4:04
    
I removed my key and created a new one. –  Diego Garcia Oct 27 '10 at 4:22

It's really not a good security policy to use passwordless ssh keys. Using pubkey authentication for signing in is a great way to secure the ssh server, but if your private key is ever compromised, your security goes right out the window. My suggestion would be to keep the password on your SSH key, and let SeaHorse automatically unlock the key when you're logged into the computer, or remember it for that specific login session. That way your key is still protected by a password, but you only have to enter the password once per login session.

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You can SSH login without password if you want to, as nathwill said you should use passphrase for extra security, but there are ways to add more security

  1. disable password login
  2. use allowusers/denyusers
  3. white list iptables
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Have a look an Keychain. It's available from the Ubuntu repositories. You can set it up to ask for the passphrase only at the first login after the system was rebooted.

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