LKBEN11096: Howto get on your VMware ESX over sshd / Putty


No Connection to VMware ESX server over WinSCP or Putty: "connection refused"


By Design: under normal conditions, all you need is your VM Infrastructure Client


This is for the folks, who want or need to get deeper into their VMware server, so make sure you know what you´re doing...

By default, VMware ESX server is "sealed" so that no connection is possible besides VMware Infrastructure Client, the console and the web-frontend.

In order to get yourself a remote shell or to copy files from and to the ESX machine, you need to open the system:

  • On your console, open your command shell with <Alt> <F1> and press <Enter> to get to the login-prompt. Login with your root account.
  • change to directory /etc/ssh
  • edit your ssh configuration with: nano etc/ssh/sshd_config
  • change the setting "PermitRootLogin" from "no" to "yes"
  • restart your ssh deamon: /etc/init.d/sshd restart



The information provided in this document is intended for your information only. Lubby makes no claims to the validity of this information. Use of this information is at own risk!

About the Author

Author: Wim Peeters - Keskon GmbH & Co. KG

Wim Peeters is electronics engineer with an additional master in IT and over 30 years of experience, including time spent in support, development, consulting, training and database administration. Wim has worked with SQL Server since version 6.5. He has developed in C/C++, Java and C# on Windows and Linux. He writes knowledge base articles to solve IT problems and publishes them on the Lubby Knowledge Platform.