ssh without password?

Timothy Murphy gayleard at
Sat Feb 23 12:53:15 UTC 2008

Cameron Simpson wrote:

> | When I ssh into machine B from machine A, I am asked for my password.
> | But when I ssh into A from B, I am not.
> | 
> | In both cases, from the other machine
> | has been added to authorized_keys .
> | And I see no difference in sshd_config or ssh_config .
> | 
> | So why am I asked for my password when ssh-ing into B?
> Examine /var/log/secure on machine B. It should shed some light on
> things. Also do your ssh with the -v option - you should see which
> authentication methods are being attempted. If your key is not being
> used, that will be apparent then. If it is being used but rejected, that
> will be apparent and the /var/log/secure file on machine B should say
> why. I presume you're using an ssh-agent?

Thanks very much.

On looking at /var/log/secure on machine B I read:
Feb 23 12:47:19 blanche sshd[18050]: Authentication refused: bad ownership
or modes for file /home/tim/.ssh/authorized_keys
Feb 23 12:47:22 blanche sshd[18050]: Accepted password for tim from port 41431 ssh2

When I looked at .ssh/authorized_keys I saw that it had mode 664
(ie with group write permission).
After changing this to mode 644, I am able to login without password.

Timothy Murphy  
e-mail (<80k only): tim /at/
tel: +353-86-2336090, +353-1-2842366
s-mail: School of Mathematics, Trinity College, Dublin 2, Ireland

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