Article ID: 4313, created on Mar 24, 2008, last review on May 11, 2014

  • Applies to:
  • Sphera


SSH private keys password-less authentication not working in SD 3.7 with UP1


SSHD is not willing to accept ssh-keys authentication when the home directory of the user is 775 (it expects 755).
/var/log/secure on the machine shows the following error when trying to login to a VDS using ssh-keys:
sshd: Authentication refused: bad ownership or modes for directory /usr/accounts/<VDSNAME>

You can change the sshd configuration to solve the problem. This change has potential security risks to regular users in the machine. However it is not relevant for the VDS owner.
The Work around:
Set the property StrictModes to no in the machine /etc/ssh/sshd_config and restart sshd.

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