I type in ssh-agent and get the following back:

SSH_AUTH_SOCK=/tmp/ssh-GqdeT074HLRJ/agent.4670; export SSH_AUTH_SOCK;
echo Agent pid 4671;

I then type in ssh-add privkey.pem and get the following:

Could not open a connection to your authentication agent

Any ideas as to what I'm doing wrong? I tried adding sudo before each of those commands, as well, but got near identical output.


You’re supposed to execute the output that you get back from ssh-agent, like this: eval $(ssh-agent)

Then your environment is set up for ssh-add to connect to the agent.

  • I tried sudo eval $(ssh-agent) and it said sudo: eval: command not found. I tried eval $(sudo ssh-agent) and it said Agent pid 4735 and then, after both of those, ssh-add still doesn't work. Any ideas? – neubert Jan 28 '14 at 5:27
  • 1
    never mind - doing sudo bash and then doing all that got the job done. thanks! – neubert Jan 28 '14 at 5:42
  • "eval ssh-agent" also works. I didn't need any sudo. – labyrinth Mar 12 '14 at 17:08
  • doing eval and then ssh-add still did not work for me, any ideas why? – user3226932 Apr 28 '17 at 8:26

You may also use the following syntax:

ssh-agent sh -c 'ssh-add && echo Do some stuff here.'

I found solution:

run below command OR add to .bashrc file

exec ssh-agent bash

ssh-add [key path]

  • 1
    (1) Two solutions have already been posted, and one has been accepted as correct.  Does yours have any advantage over those earlier ones?  Please do not respond in comments; edit your answer to make it clearer and more complete. (2) Do you really believe that it’s a good idea to exec bash from within .bashrc?  Have you tried it?  Before you do, think hard about what will happen.  (Hint: what does a new bash process do when it starts?)  If you do dare to try it, you might want to make sure that you have another shell window open. – Scott Feb 15 '17 at 8:19

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