Web Hosting With Telnet/SSH Access

Telnet, and its encrypted equivalent SSH (secure shell), are ways you can access your web hosting account. Specifically, they are protocols which allow you to access a command-line interface on the web server.

Telnet and SSH access is normally used to remotely access your web server’s command line. Telnet usually uses port 23, and SSH port 22 (but these can change from web host to web host).

For advanced webmaster operations, a web hosting account with telnet or SSH access is almost essential. Because you have direct access to your account on the web server, you can more easily install applications, transfer large files, perform backups, and set up mail filters.

Most simple websites will not need the flexibility that telnet or SSH access provides, however it may come in handy one day. Be aware that a web host offering telnet and to a lesser extend SSH access is at greater risk of hacking, so you should be extra certain that the web host is reliable and gives due consideration to security.

If you do need telnet or SSH access, you will need either a program or a command line in order to connect. Windows comes with a telnet program (Start->Run, type “telnet”), but better ones are available (such as PuTTY, which also supports SSH).