My normal ssh logins are with public keys authentication (aka passwordless), however, under certain circumstances I’d like to revert back to good old passwords logins. Like when I want to transfer a Plesk server across another server using the Plesk Migration & Transfer manager.
After scouring the Net for some inspiration, which failed, and some tinkering, I finally found a neat solution to switch between the two (passwordless and normal authentication logins) quickly, the process is relatively simple* but frankly puzzling IMHO. I shall explain why:
By default, most sshd_config files state:
Which is meant to be the “default” because it is commented out. This line matters little when PKI is in use. However it seems that it is not the case [the default being “yes” as it is commented out] as if I specifically uncomment the line:
…and restart the sshd service, I can login the server with the following command:
ssh -o PubkeyAuthentication=no root@host
If the line is “defaulted” (with a#). I am unsuccessful
Plesk Migration (or other applications requiring password ssh)
So, when an application like the Plesk Migration & Transfer Manager requires a ssh username/password pair, under the current [passwordless] set up just edit the sshd_config file to change the following:
restart sshd afterwards and you’re good.
*This set up is on a centos 6 64