OpenSSH (including daemon) for OpenLink

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This article based on work done by Frontalot on




This project offers OpenSSH (including daemon), precompiled and packaged for the PPC LinkStation. The OpenSSH[1] - package is intended for people who want to upgrade from Dropbear to a more full-featured SSH daemon. This way you can use a client like PuTTY or FileZilla for terminal and file transfer. You can even tunnel other protocols like VNC through SSH to make them secure.[2] This package requires that you have installed the OpenLink or FreeLink firmware. You may download the latest version from the downloads area here. Or, use this version[3] "it contains the original tarball plus an installation script (not yet widely tested, but at least from that you can see the requirements)" referred to by Izzy in this forum [4]

Installation Instructions



A complete OpenSSH-4.2p2-package is available at mindbenders-page: OpenSSH-4.3p2_ppc.tar.gz Install it by

cd /
tar xzvf OpenSSH-4.3p2_ppc.tar.gz

you should be able to connect via ssh after reboot or if you start

/etc/init.d/sshd start


Also, the sshd needs to be modified by adding the following lines to startup block.

if [ ! -d /var/empty ]; then
mkdir /var/empty

If the modification is not done, every time SSH is stopped and restarted, it will complain the the /var/empty directory already exists. One must also remember to create user named "sshd".

FreeLink (Debian)

  • Install the OpenSSH package using apt-get. If prompted, select SSH version 2. Use the command:[5]
apt-get install ssh

Programs included

The OpenSSH suite includes the following tools:[6]

scp .
  • ssh-keygen, a tool to generate the RSA and DSA keys that are used for user and host authentication:
ssh-keygen -t rsa
  • ssh-agent, a small daemon that can hold copies of public keys and use them to sign authentication challenges, avoiding the need to enter passphrases every time they are used:
eval `ssh-agent`
  • ssh-add, a tool to load keys into, or delete keys from a running ssh-agent:
  • ssh-keyscan, which scans a list of hosts and collects their public keys:
ssh-keyscan -t rsa
  • sftp-server, the sftp server subsystem (normally run directly by sshd)
  • ssh-keysign, a setuid helper program that signs "hostbased" authentication challenges using the host's private keys (normally executed directly by ssh)


  1. - OpenSSH a FREE version of the SSH connectivity tools
  2. - Tunnelling VNC over SSH with PuTTY
  3. openssh-3.9p1-05b.tgz - from Qumran Cave FileBase
  4. The Linkstation Community Forum / Everything else / - Mediawiki is online
  5. Convert from telnet to SSH (both OpenSSH and Dropbear)
  6. OpenSSH - From the WikiPedia