How to use SSH (Secure Shell) on Windows and Mac to access your account

This article describes how to connect to your A2 Hosting account securely using SSH.

What is SSH access and why would I need to use SSH?

Secure Shell ( SSH) is a protocol that provides secure command line access to your A2 Hosting account. Using SSH, you can remotely log into your A2 Hosting account and execute commands as if you were sitting on the server.

With its simplified interface, the command line allows you to perform tasks with commands from text . You’ll also find that SSH is a time-saving solution that can ultimately help speed up many tasks. For example, you can do things you can’t do with your account’s hosting control panel.

How SSH Works

An SSH connection creates a secure connection between two computers. SSH can provide a secure, encrypted connection between the client and the server through this encrypted tunnel. From here, you can easily transfer files between connected machines or run programs and commands that would otherwise require more complicated screen sharing solutions. It’s like you’re right in front of your server, in the data center where it’s located.

What you need to create an SSH connection

Just like you need an FTP client to manage files with FTP, you need an SSH client on your computer to make an SSH connection. Putty and WinSCP are two popular SSH solutions for Windows users. Both Linux and macOS have built-in terminals, so there’s no need to download an SSH client. Our step-by-step SSH account access instructions below will help you access your account remotely.

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Where can you find SSH connection details?

To find the SSH connection details for your account, log in to the A2 Hosting Customer Portal at https://my.a2hosting.com.

Click on your plan, located at Your active products/services section:

Click anywhere on your package. This takes you to the Manage page. The Manage page contains all the technical information you need for SSH, such as your IP Address, SSH Port, Username strong> and Password:

Customer Portal account information

For more information on how to use the Customer Portal, see these articles.

How to use an SSH client

A Once you have the connection details for your account, you are ready to use an SSH client to connect to the server. Follow the appropriate procedure below for your computer’s operating system.

Windows operating systems

You can use any SSH client, but we’ll show you how to use putty, which you can download here. To connect to your account using putty, follow these steps:

  1. Start putty.
  2. In the Hostname (or IP address) text box, type the name of host or the IP address of the server where your account is located.
  3. In the Port text box, type 7822.
  4. Confirm that the Connection Type radio button is set to SSH .
  5. Click Open.
  6. A security alert from putty about the server’s host key appears the first time you connect. Click Yes.
  7. Enter your account username when prompted, and then press Enter.
  8. Type your account password when prompted. prompted, and then press Enter .
  9. When the remote server command prompt appears, you are connected. The initial command line is: [email protected] [~]#
  10. Now you can run commands. For example, to list the current directory, type ls and then press Enter.
  11. To close the SSH connection when you’re done, type exit and then press Enter.
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macOS and Linux operating systems

Both macOS and Linux include SSH clients, so connecting to your A2 Hosting account on these operating systems is easy. You don’t have to download a special client.

To connect to your account, follow these steps:

  1. Open a terminal window. The procedure to do this depends on the operating system and desktop environment.
    • On macOS, click Applications, click Utilities, and then click Terminal.
  2. At the command prompt, type the following command. Replace username with your A2 Hosting username and example.com with your site’s domain name:

    ssh -p 7822 username@example.com

  3. Type your password when prompted so.

  4. When the remote server command prompt appears, you are connected. The initial command line is:

    [email protected] [~]#
  5. Now you can run commands. For example, to list the current directory, type ls and then press Enter.
  6. To close the SSH connection when you’re done, type exit and then press Intro.

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