Connection Refused on ssh

Dave Mielke dave at
Thu Oct 7 17:08:45 UTC 2004

The "connection refused" error means that nothing is listening on the requested
port. This condition can only mean that sshd isn't running or that it's
listening on a non-standard port. A firewall, which would either drop or reject
packets, wouldn't cause this error. A dropped packet would result in a timeout,
and a rejected packet would result in "no route to host".

There are two probable causes. One is that sshd isn't even installed on the
target system. The other is that it isn't being started. Try doing:

   chkconfig --list sshd

If it says that it doesn't recognize the name, e.g.:

   chkconfig --list sshd
   error reading information on service sshd: No such file or directory

then sshd isn't installed. If you get a line full of offs, e.g.:

   chkconfig --list sshd
   sshd  0:off 1:off 2:off 3:off 4:off 5:off 6:off

then it isn't being started. To actually start it, do:

   service sshd start

To ensure that it starts on reboots, do:

   chkconfig --level=2345 sshd on

Dave Mielke           | 2213 Fox Crescent | I believe that the Bible is the
Phone: 1-613-726-0014 | Ottawa, Ontario   | Word of God. Please contact me
EMail: dave at | Canada  K2A 1H7   | if you're concerned about Hell.                   |

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