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That is a private key, stored in OpenSSL format (which OpenSSH also uses). You can verify the contents using openssl rsa -noout -text < yourfile.pem. If it rejects the password, then usually the password is simply wrong.


If you are in *nix, you can use ssh-agent/ssh-add to store your identities in memory for your session. Run ssh-agent from a terminal user@machine$ ssh-agent bash This will create a bash process with ssh-agent running If you don't want to create another process, then user@machine$ ssh-agent -s SSH_AUTH_SOCK=/tmp/ssh-shtzxe4347/agent.4347; export ...


You are looking for the ~/.ssh/config configuration file. For instance, add this entry in this file. Host host HostName host.example.com User johndoe IdentityFile ~/.ssh/host.key Now you can type ssh host And ssh will automatically use the username and key you specified by the IdentityFile parameter. Therefore that command is equivalent to: ...

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