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How to Connect to a Linux VPS over SSH with PuTTY/FileZilla

When you first bought a VPS, first thing you need learn is how to connect to it. SSH is the best way to connect to a Linux VPS. It’s secure and safe. So if you’ve just bought your first VPS and trying to connect, this post will help you with it.

SSH stands for Secure Shell. According to Wikipedia,

Secure Shell (SSH) is a cryptographic network protocol for secure data communication, remote shell services or command execution and other secure network services between two networked computers that connects, via a secure channel over an insecure network, a server and a client (running SSH server and SSH client programs, respectively).

Using PuTTY to Access VPS over SSH (Command Line Interface)

We’re going to use SSH to connect to our VPS. To do that, we need software called PuTTY. So go ahead to the site, download and install putty.exe on your computer. Run the application PuTTY and it’ll ask you for Host Name or IP Address. You can get it from your hosting provider. They usually send it along with other important information about your server on an email titled VPS Setup Email or New Server Information.

Type servers IP address in the text field. Click Open after making sure port is 22 and connection type is SHH. A security warning will show up, simply click Yes. Then a window with black background will open with the text login as: Just type root from your keyboard and hit enter. It’ll now ask for password. Type the password you created during VPS sign-up process. You won’t see what you’re typing at this point. It’s a security feature. Just make sure you type it correct. You’ll get used to it.

And that’s it. You’re now logged in to your server. You’ll see a welcome message from whatever OS you’re using.

Using FileZilla to Access VPS over SSH (FTP Client)

PuTTY gave us direct access to the server’s command line where we can execute Linux commands. But that’s not going to be enough for use to manage a server with websites. We occasionally need to upload and download file from the server. We must connect to VPS with a FTP client like FileZilla to transfer files.

We must install FTP server software on our VPS to access it through FTP. It’ll add some load to server and eat bit of RAM. FTP isn’t secure either. No one should use it. SSH is a better solution for this. It’s secure and you’ll hardly feel any deference.

So download and install FileZilla on your PC. Now Launch it. Then fill your server information like below.

filezilla ftp login

  • Host: sftp://serverIP/
  • Username: root
  • Password: root password
  • Port: 22

Hit ‘Quickconnect’ and you’ll be connected to the server as if you were using FTP. You can do anything you could do with FTP.

So these are the two methods you can use to connect to your VPS over SSH. You can use PuTTY to give direct commands and FileZilla to manage the file system. SSH is really handy in terms of safety and usability. It minimizes the need of a control panel.

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About Tharindu Kumara

Hey!! I'm Tharindu. I'm from Sri Lanka. I'm a part time freelancer and this is my blog where I write about everything I think might be useful to readers. If you read a tutorial here and want to hire me. send me a message on Fiverr.

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