The PuTTY Terminal Program

SSH or Secure SHell is a standard Internet protocol for encrypted remote login sessions. MS Windows does not include an ssh client.  Many versions include a similar client called telnet that does not support encryption. So if one is going to do much remote work from a Windows system, one probably wants to find and download an ssh client.

One client that I can recommend is PuTTY. This application is freeware (meaning it costs nothing), and it can be configured to use SSH (Secure SHell) to encrypt information before sending it across the Internet, thereby making the communication more secure. This handout describes the steps one can take to install and use PuTTY on an MS Windows computer.

  1. Visit the PuTTY Web site,
  2. Click on the Download link.
  3. Under the header "For Windows on Intel x86", download the file putty.exe (using the HTTP option worked best for me).
  4. Run putty.exe; a dialog window such as the following should appear:
  5. The default font for PuTTY is Courier 10-point, which is pretty small in most screen resolutions. To change the font and/or font size, click on the Appearance item in the category list, then click on the Change... button under Font used in the terminal window. A font selector dialog such as the following appears. Choose the font and font size desired, then click on the OK button; this takes one back to the previous dialog (the one with the Appearance item selected), and the new font should appear under Set the font used in the terminal window.

  6. Click on the Session item in the category list.  Ensure that the connection type is SSH.  Type in the Host Name box as shown below:
  7. To save the changes made (so that PuTTY can be started using the changes), type littlefe in the Saved Sessions box. The dialog should now look like this:
  8. Click on the Save button, and littlefe should appear in the Saved Sessions list. PuTTY has now saved the configuration changes under the name littlefe.
  9. To actually start using PuTTY, click on the Open button. The first time you use PuTTY with a given computer (such as CSA), a warning dialog appears; click the Yes button.
  10. The PuTTY terminal window now appears, as shown below. Enter your user ID and password.

What about the next time I use PuTTY?

Every time one starts PuTTY, one is presented with the configuration window. If one saved a configuration, one can use it. When the configuration window appears, click on littlefe in the Saved Sessions list, then click on the Load button; should appear in the Host Name box and SSH should appear selected under Protocol. Click on the Open button, and the PuTTY terminal window should appear, as shown above.