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SSH server on Windows XP


Sfor
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I'm trying to install an SSH server on Windows XP. There are quite a few tutorials on the Internet, but the links to the executables are broken on those targeted for Windows XP. On others the executables are targeted for newer Windows versions or just not running on XP.

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The first problem is installing the SSH server on Windows XP. Personally I would not treat this thread as a question. Perhaps "investigation" would be a better term. Still I have somewhat limited time I can spare on it.

There are many tutorials targeted towards Windows XP, but it looks like most of them are based on OpenSSH for Windows v3.8.1p1-1 from 2004. The executables from this version have been removed from sourceforge.net as the project was taken over by a new developer. Comments from following years are stating the installer has destroyed the path variables, and it is a "dangerous stuff". Perhaps, thats why the executables were removed, and just the source code remains there. I think it is safe to assume, the version 3.8.1p1-1 was working correctly, but the new builds were buggy. Still, there is no access to the 3.8.1p1-1 executables.

Another approach would be to install Cygwin and SSH server separately. For now, all I can say is, the current Cygwin version does not work on Windows XP.

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I was able to get 3.7.1  from https://sourceforge.net/projects/sshwindows/files/OldFiles/

Edited by Sfor
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For now, I need it to run a command on connection to a remote Windows XP. It will be WOL command. So the Windows XP will be acting as a WOL proxy.

Later I will need it as a secure communication channel for TightVNC access, as well.

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You can use WinRM. Connection is encrypted even without https. Setup your firewall rule to only allow inbound to 5985 from wherever you are connecting from. You'll need to use Windows Management Framework 2.0.

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Is it possible for two people to connect to the same desktop using WinRM? I mean for two people to see exactly the same deskto and to controll it at the same time? (So, one can see the actions of the other, just as two people connected to the same desktop through VNC).

My initial plan is to secure the SSH tunnel with SSL certficates, so no one without a proper client certificate would be able to connect. In this particular case it will not be possible to restrict the access to predetermined IP list, I'm afraid. The requirement is to provide access from anywhere.

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I tried OpenSSH 3.7.1, it installed fine without destroying my PATH variables. I installed it to a custom folder though, maybe the bug happens when using the default options.

At first the service wasn't able to start, it was looking for /etc in my C:\Windows folder. Turned out i had an old copy of cygwin1.dll there that got loaded instead, so i had to remove it. I also had to remove the CYGWIN variable.

After this the service was starting properly and i successfully connected to it from another system.

 

While trying this, i found out my terminal program MobaXterm contains a few servers. The SSH server included has a few limitations in the free version, but they also offer a dedicated server MobaSSH and don't mention any limits for its free variant.

You can try this too.

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Well. I installed the 3.7.1 with the default path. All went just as the help file said, and it works properly, for now.

For terminal program I'm using PUTTY, just as I was using with many Linux distributions.

The first observation is: it is not possible to use \ character, when configuring custom shell command on connection. The shell has to be available somewhere where PATH variable points to, because of that. It is possible to use CMD.EXE /C to run command on connection and disconnect immediately after that, as well.

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I have a few observations.

- Open SSH Installer creates profiles for all users present during the installation time. Adding another Windows user at later time requires manual adding the new user to the Open SSH database.

- While user names are taken from the Open SSH database, passwords are handled by Windows.

Finally I was unable to enable the RSA key authentication. It just does not work for me. The help file does not specify in what folders particular server related files should be placed. Also there are some differences with the configuration file names. I do not think the help file was created for this particular Open SSH version.

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  • 2 months later...

Version OpenSSH for Windows v3.8.1p1-1 was in the setupssh381-20040709.zip file. Read this blog:

How to setup SFTP with Open SSH in Windows and direct old link was:

http://sourceforge.net/projects/sshwindows/files/OpenSSH for Windows - Release/3.8p1-1 20040709 Build/setupssh381-20040709.zip/download

You can find the file here: setupssh381-20040709.zip

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