allowing root SSH access to your ESX host

In order to be able to SSH into your ESX host server via putty you need to enable root access via SSH. By default this is disabled – we will modify a configuration file and restart the service to allow ourselves into the ESX host console remotely.

From the console (you will need to physically be at the machine, or at least via a DRAC or KVM over IP), press Alt-F1 to access the command line and login as root.

Edit the following file:

/etc/ssh/sshd_config

You can do this by typing:

nano /etc/ssh/sshd_config

Go to the line that reads “PermitRootLogin no”

and change this to read “PermitRootLogin yes”

Press Ctrl-X to exit and press the “Y” key, hitting Enter to commit the choice to save.

Now we need to restart the sshd service to enable the changes. Type:

service sshd restart

and press enter.

You will now be able to SSH in as root.

Please drop me a comment if this has helped in any way!

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