Telnet is a communication protocol used to issue commands on a remote host. A version is included with Windows 95, Windows 98, Windows NT, UNIX, and commercial versions of Linux. Unfortunately, some people have a desire to harm others. Accordingly, for security purposes, effective 8/2001, our servers enable SSH instead of telnet. Telnet is not secure and a packet sniffer can grab your user id and password and do lots of BAD things to you and your site. You can go anything in SSH that you can do in telnet. However, the transmissions are much more secure. Unless otherwise requested, all accounts have SSH disabled. We will enable SSH on these accounts upon customer request. Unless you are looking to become very expert in server activities, for most cases, SSH or telnet activity is unnecessary. We have generated a control panel that does 99.95% of anything you may want to do without knowing SSH, telnet, UNIX, or NT systems.
If you use an Apple Macintosh or Windows computer, SSH client software is available at:
We recommend the putty program for Windows. It is a great program, and it is free.
Pick a server in your region and then click on the operating system that you use. Choose putty or SSH from the Network Tools and download whichever program appeals to you.
* You are now connected via a UNIX SSH session and can run any standard UNIX command
To change your master password, type: passwd
To finish SSH, type: exit
While this is a boon for network managers for traffic analysis, it is also a tool for malevolent hackers. Today, new protocols are being introducted that are designed to prevent packet sniffing by encrypting packets. However, many networks have not yet employed this encryption technology, or are only encrypting a portion of their data. Because of this, packet sniffing is still a viable method for stealing information.
The reason that packet sniffing works is due to the way Ethernet networks send their packets. Any time that a PC sends out a packet, it is sent out as a broadcast. This means that every PC on the network sees the packet. However, every PC is supposed to ignore the packet, except for the PC that is its intended destination.
The telnet protocol give you command line access to your virtual domain. That gives you LOTS of power. To ensure you have the right to make powerful changes, your user identification and password is required. Since telnet is not secure, others may get this information. That means they can do anything they want to your site. SSH is like telnet, but encrypted. Thus it avoids this problem. Unfortunately, it doesn't come with your system (much as telnet once did not) so you need to download a program such as putty or other SSH engine. Most are free, so that is the worst of it.