History & Credits
Who uses it
OpenSSH is a FREE version of the SSH connectivity tools that technical users of the Internet rely on. Users of telnet, rlogin, and ftp may not realize that their password is transmitted across the Internet unencrypted, but it is. OpenSSH encrypts all traffic (including passwords) to effectively eliminate eavesdropping, connection hijacking, and other attacks. Additionally, OpenSSH provides secure tunneling capabilities and several authentication methods, and supports all SSH protocol versions.
The OpenSSH suite replaces rlogin and telnet with the ssh program, rcp with scp, and ftp with sftp. Also included is sshd (the server side of the package), and the other utilities like ssh-add, ssh-agent, ssh-keysign, ssh-keyscan, ssh-keygen and sftp-server.
OpenSSH is developed by the OpenBSD Project. The software is developed in countries that permit cryptography export and is freely useable and re-useable by everyone under a BSD license. However, development has costs, so if you find OpenSSH useful (particularly if you use it in a commercial system that is distributed) please consider donating to help fund the project.
OpenSSH is developed by two teams. One team does strictly OpenBSD-based development, aiming to produce code that is as clean, simple, and secure as possible. We believe that simplicity without the portability "goop" allows for better code quality control and easier review. The other team then takes the clean version and makes it portable (adding the "goop") to make it run on many operating systems -- the so-called -p releases, ie "OpenSSH 4.0p1".
An excellent book has been written to teach OpenSSH, titled SSH Mastery.
Please take note of our Who uses it page, which list just some of the vendors who incorporate OpenSSH into their own products -- as a critically important security / access feature -- instead of writing their own SSH implementation or purchasing one from another vendor. This list specifically includes companies like NetApp, NETFLIX, EMC, Juniper, Cisco, Apple, Red Hat, and Novell; but probably includes almost all router, switch or unix-like operating system vendors. In the 10 years since the inception of the OpenSSH project, these companies have contributed not even a dime of thanks in support of the OpenSSH project (despite numerous requests).