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This is a step by step instruction on install OpenSSH for Windows. I used version 3.8.1p1 for the screenshots. You can download the install file from here and save it to the desktop.

Once it is on the desktop you will need to extract the exe installation file. After extracting, double click on the exe file to run the installer.

The first two screens of the installer are normal screens. The first giving you general information about the installation with the simple "Next" or "Cancel" buttons. The next screenshots shows the License Agreement, read it or don't read it that's up to you. But, you have to agree to the terms to install the software.

The components screen you want to select everything (Shortcuts are up to you) and press the next key.

The installation will put the default path of "c:\Program Files\OpenSSH" in to the Install Location textbox. If you want to install somewhere else select "Browse" and pick the location. And then press "Next." The next screen is just the Start Menu folder location and name. Change as needed and press "Install"

This message window will appear during the installation process to edit the password file so that you can login to the SSH server. That process will be discussed later in this step by step. And then finally press the finish button to exit installtion program.

The next screenshot is the two commands you need to execute to setup the groups and password files so that you can login into your SSH server. First go to Start->Run->cmd In the command prompt window type the two following commands:

mkgroup -l >> ..\etc\group
mkpasswd -l >> ..\etc\passwd

those two commands will create the two files with the current users and groups on the windows machine. Additional usage info for mkpasswd:
Usage: mkpasswd [OPTION]... [domain]...
Print /etc/passwd file to stdout

-l,--local print local user accounts
-c,--current print current account, if a domain account
-d,--domain print domain accounts (from current domain
if no domains specified)
-o,--id-offset offset change the default offset (10000) added to uids
in domain accounts.
-g,--local-groups print local group information too
if no domain specified
-m,--no-mount don't use mount points for home dir
-s,--no-sids don't print SIDs in GCOS field
(this affects ntsec)
-p,--path-to-home path use specified path and not user account home dir or / home
-u,--username username only return information for the specified user
-h,--help displays this message
-v,--version version information and exit

One of `-l', `-d' or `-g' must be given.

The install should have installed the OpenSSH server as a service for windows to automatically start on boot. To start the service now type:
net start opensshd

Or go to the Start->Run->services.msc and find the "opensshd" service and right click and press start.

If the service starts then try to login to the server using putty if successful then the installation is complete.

Feedback received on this FAQ entry:
  • How about if we want to silently install this installer? For example using a command prompt without any gui?

    2013-07-14 03:17:04

  • This does not say how to create the domain users. When i use the -d switch, i get access denied when trying to connect.

    2012-02-03 16:59:54

  • I followed the instructions and the readme and tried to change the path the client logs into to other than C:\Program Files\OpenSSH, but I fail to do so. I get error 1067 or get the same login path.

    2010-01-31 09:39:19

  • Now we have installed OpenSSH, perhaps could you show a connection between linux and windows.

    2009-03-03 08:33:21

Expand got feedback?

by dpierce See Profile
last modified: 2013-10-17 16:50:16