When I SSH into another system and press Ctrl-Z, I expected the SSH client to go into background. However, it's the remote process that does that. Where does the magic happen?

1 Answer 1


The SSH client disables special key handling (stty -icanon -isig options) for the local tty, so when you press CtrlZ, the client just reads the raw byte 0x1A and forwards it to the server.

OpenSSH supports a special command to suspend the client – Enter, then ~, followed by CtrlZ.

  • 4
    At begining of line type ~? to get a full list of escape codes. You can change the escape character using -e when you start ssh. (this applies to openssh, used on most Gnu systems.) Sep 27, 2012 at 22:31
  • I expected the local ssh client to be suspended, not the process on the remote machine. Is there a reason why the ordinary Ctrl-Z is modified instead of a new ~ Ctrl-Z being added for stopping the remote process? Oct 2, 2019 at 11:10

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