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Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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9.5.5 Setting up ssh-agent

It is safer to protect your SSH authentication key with a passphrase. If it was not set, use ssh-keygen -p to set it.

Place your public key (e.g. ~/.ssh/ into ~/.ssh/authorized_keys on a remote host using a password-based connection to the remote host as described in Connecting with fewer passwords – RSA, Section 9.5.3.

     $ ssh-agent bash # or run zsh/tcsh/pdksh program instead.
     $ ssh-add ~/.ssh/id_rsa
     Enter passphrase for /home/osamu/.ssh/id_rsa:
     Identity added: /home/osamu/.ssh/id_rsa (/home/osamu/.ssh/id_rsa)
     $ scp foo [email protected]:foo
      ... no passphrase needed from here on :-)
      ... terminating ssh-agent session

For the X server, normal Debian startup scripts execute ssh-agent as parent process. So you only need to execute ssh-add once.

For more, read ssh-agent(1)and ssh-add(1).

Debian GNU/Linux Reference Guide
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