SSH keys are a way to identify trusted computers, without involving passwords. The steps below will walk you through generating an SSH key and adding the public key to the server.

Step 1: Check for SSH Keys


Users must generate a public/private key pair when their site implements host-based authentication or user public-key authentication. For additional options, see the ssh-keygen(1) man page. Before You Begin. Determine from your system administrator if host-based authentication is configured. Start the key generation program.

Symmetric Key

First, check for existing SSH keys on your computer. Open Git Bash, Cygwin, or Terminal, etc. and enter:

Check the directory listing to see if you already have a public SSH key. By default, the filenames of the public keys are one of the following:


If you see an existing public and private key pair listed (for example and id_rsa) that you’d like to use, you can skip Step 2 and go straight to Step 3.

Step 2: Generate a new SSH key


Public Key Example

With your command line tool still open, enter the text shown below. Make sure you substitute in your email address:

You’ll be asked to enter a passphrase, or simply press Enter to not enter a passphrase:

After you enter a passphrase (or just press Enter twice), review the fingerprint, or ‘id’ of your SSH key:

Step 3: Add your key to the ssh-agent

Do I Need Host Public Key Before Generating User Ssh Code

To configure the ssh-agent program to use your SSH key, first ensure ssh-agent is enabled.

If you are using Git Bash, turn on the ssh-agent with command shown below instead:

Then, add your SSH key to the ssh-agent:

Step 4: Add your SSH key to the server

To add your public SSH key to the server, you’ll copy the public SSH key you just created to the server. Substitute “username” with your username on the server, and “” with the domain address or IP address of your server:

Do I Need Host Public Key Before Generating User Ssh File

The server will then prompt you for your password:

Do I Need Host Public Key Before Generating User Ssh Download

That’s it! You should now be set up to connect to the server without having to authenticate.

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