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Man Pages

Manual Reference Pages  -  NET::SSH (3)

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Net::SSH - Perl extension for secure shell



  use Net::SSH qw(ssh issh sshopen2 sshopen3);

  ssh(user@hostname, $command);

  issh(user@hostname, $command);

  ssh_cmd(user@hostname, $command);
  ssh_cmd( {
    user => user,
    host =>,
    command => command,
    args => [ -arg1, -arg2 ],
    stdin_string => "string\n",
  } );

  sshopen2(user@hostname, $reader, $writer, $command);

  sshopen3(user@hostname, $writer, $reader, $error, $command);


Simple wrappers around ssh commands.

For an all-perl implementation that does not require the system <B>sshB> command, see Net::SSH::Perl instead.


ssh [USER@]HOST, COMMAND [, ARGS ... ] Calls ssh in batch mode.
issh [USER@]HOST, COMMAND [, ARGS ... ] Prints the ssh command to be executed, waits for the user to confirm, and (optionally) executes the command.
ssh_cmd [USER@]HOST, COMMAND [, ARGS ... ]
ssh_cmd OPTIONS_HASHREF Calls ssh in batch mode. Throws a fatal error if data occurs on the command’s STDERR. Returns any data from the command’s STDOUT.

If using the hashref-style of passing arguments, possible keys are:

  user (optional)
  host (requried)
  command (required)
  args (optional, arrayref)
  stdin_string (optional) - written to the commands STDIN

sshopen2 [USER@]HOST, READER, WRITER, COMMAND [, ARGS ... ] Connects the supplied filehandles to the ssh process (in batch mode).
sshopen3 HOST, WRITER, READER, ERROR, COMMAND [, ARGS ... ] Connects the supplied filehandles to the ssh process (in batch mode).


  use Net::SSH qw(sshopen2);
  use strict;

  my $user = "username";
  my $host = "hostname";
  my $cmd = "command";

  sshopen2("$user\@$host", *READER, *WRITER, "$cmd") || die "ssh: $!";

  while (<READER>) {
      print "$_\n";



Q: How do you supply a password to connect with ssh within a perl script using the Net::SSH module?

A: You don’t (at least not with this module). Use RSA or DSA keys. See the
quick help in the next section and the ssh-keygen(1) manpage.

A #2: See Net::SSH::Expect instead.

Q: My script is leaking ssh processes.

A: See How do I avoid zombies on a Unix system in perlfaq8, IPC::Open2, IPC::Open3 and waitpid in perlfunc.


1 Generate keys Type:

   ssh-keygen -t rsa

And do not enter a passphrase unless you wanted to be prompted for one during file copying.

Here is what you will see:

   $ ssh-keygen -t rsa
   Generating public/private rsa key pair.
   Enter file in which to save the key (/home/User/.ssh/id_rsa):
   Enter passphrase (empty for no passphrase):

   Enter same passphrase again:

   Your identification has been saved in /home/User/.ssh/id_rsa.
   Your public key has been saved in /home/User/.ssh/
   The key fingerprint is:
   5a:cd:2b:0a:cd:d9:15:85:26:79:40:0c:55:2a:f4:23 User@JEFF-CPU

2 Copy public to machines you want to upload to is your public key. Copy it to ~/.ssh on target machine.

Put a copy of the public key file on each machine you want to log into. Name the copy authorized_keys (some implementations name this file authorized_keys2)

Then type:

     chmod 600 authorized_keys

Then make sure your home dir on the remote machine is not group or world writeable.


Ivan Kohler <>

Assistance wanted - this module could really use a maintainer with enough time to at least review and apply more patches. Or the module should just be deprecated in favor of Net::SSH::Expect or made into an ::Any style compatibility wrapper that uses whatver implementation is avaialble (Net::SSH2, Net::SSH::Perl or shelling out like the module does now). Please email Ivan if you are interested in helping.

John Harrison <> contributed an example for the documentation.

Martin Langhoff <> contributed the ssh_cmd command, and Jeff Finucane <> updated it and took care of the 0.04 release.

Anthony Awtrey <> contributed a fix for those still using OpenSSH v1.

Thanks to terrence brannon <> for the documentation in the GENERATING AND USING SSH KEYS section.


Copyright (c) 2004 Ivan Kohler. Copyright (c) 2007-2008 Freeside Internet Services, Inc. All rights reserved. This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.


Not OO.

Look at IPC::Session (also fsh, well now the native SSH master mode stuff)


For a perl implementation that does not require the system <B>sshB> command, see Net::SSH::Perl instead.

For a wrapper version that allows you to use passwords, see Net::SSH::Expect instead.

For another non-forking version that uses the libssh2 library, see Net::SSH2.

For a way to execute remote Perl code over an ssh connection see IPC::PerlSSH.

ssh-keygen(1), ssh(1), IO::File, IPC::Open2, IPC::Open3

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perl v5.20.3 SSH (3) 2008-05-14

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