connect

Connect Remotely to Other Computers

This article discusses the two primary commands you can use to remotely connect to other computers and when you should use each.

What Are They?

The commands are ssh and telnet.

We’ve already talked a lot about SSH and how to use it. If you need a refresher, you can check out our SSH Basics article. If you want to go a bit further, read our guide on using SSHSudo –- it talks about controlling multiple computers with SSH and executing commands as a superuser.

We haven’t really mentioned telnet yet on the site. Telnet was much more popular before SSH came around, as they essentially accomplish the same function. The syntax is almost the same and it performs similarly, but there are a few key differences.

What Makes Telnet Different?

The first thing you should know about telnet is that it sends all the information in plaintext. That means that none of the information you type in – including usernames and passwords – is encrypted.

Read that again. The information is sent over an unencrypted connection when you use telnet.

This differs from SSH, which establishes a secure, encrypted connection with the target computer. The acronym SSH even stands for Secure Shell.

Telnet also does not perform any authentication when you connect remotely, which can be dangerous.

What Is the Syntax for Telnet

If you went back and read our posts on SSH, the syntax for telnet should look very similar:

telnet 1.1.1.1

Of course, replace the 1.1.1.1 with the IP address of the computer you are targeting. Next, when prompted, enter the username and password that you are targeting and hit enter to be logged in.

From here, you can do things just as if you were using SSH, including executing AppleScript from the command line.

The Verdict

You should always use SSH when possible. It is more secure and encrypts the information that you send. In addition, its compression is better so it may be faster in certain cases. There is no reason to use telnet anymore when remotely connecting to another computer.

18 Comments

  1. MAn i have hacked so many computers. Honoslty it one of the funnest things i have ever don ein my entire life ig to like i think if 46 people banking acoounts and their cash i have hacked the canadaian air force data base, i got info that nobody knew about from world war 2. my bedroom has 7 computers i have 3 macs 2 dells and 2 sonys. i have hacked so many things i would classify my self as one of the best so do all my 102 hacker that work for me i dare you to try to hace my computer ill give you my addres and nam if you want. name Travis doubios. Email travisd1999@gmail.com

    f**k me biches.

    • Jeff Browning

      05.28.2011

      Ha. Ha. Ha.

    • ANON

      10.26.2011

      i think it interesting that you publicize yourself… true hackers tend not to do that. plus i would enjoy seeing someone hack military servers, posting it online and providing contact info that claims you were born in 1999. if you really can hack, send me a message on my computer. if you hack military servers you should be able to find out who i am, where i am, and ssh/telnet into my computer. soooo…. be nice to others and definitely don’t do this stuff to your enemies

    • adf

      11.06.2011

      Umm. Your inability to spell makes me think that your probably a bored 7 year old who barley knows what hacking is. I nearly failed english because i cant spell, but even I wouldn’t spell name, nam. If your such a good hacker why cant you use spell check?

    • Kima Hearac

      12.07.2011

      Trollolololololol.

    • Jonathan

      02.06.2012

      please please please hack him it would be so funny :D

    • Leo

      03.03.2012

      Reasons I believe you are not a hacker:
      1. You have horrible grammar
      2. You were on a tutorial on what SSH is
      3. No smart guy needs 7 computers, just ONE fast mac with a virtual PC inside to run windows stuff
      4. Unless you are your own email host (meaning you own gmail.com), you have no control over the security of your email.
      5. I am led to believe that all this was concocted up to hack your friends email address, as the name in the title of the post is different than your email address.
      6. If this is your real email, it is only common sense that you were born in 1999, which means that you were 11 or 12 at the time of posting (explains the horrific grammar)
      7. The website you said you were from when posting the comment (hacker.hacku) is not a real website.

      There are many more reasons out there, and sorry for digging up an old comment, I was just so outraged by this dude.

  2. greg

    06.01.2011

    Reply

    no offense but your grammar is a bit…. f****d Rick. Most hackers and programmers usually tend to actually be able to spell… its a plus anyway. If you are a hacker, and that makes you mad, go ahead, hack me, its no skin off my back. oh, and your email could be hacked pretty quick, as it is a web-based, anonymous email client, it has nothing to do with your 3 Macs, 2 Dells or 2 Sonys, in your bedroom.

    now then,

    great article, I’m not sure how I stumbled on it, but great none-the-less. unless i missed it, maybe you should provide a link to CyberDuck, or something. I know how frustrating it can be to receive comments that dring no feedback, but Rick Hamaae(S) was kinda funny.

    • hajeera

      08.12.2012

      Hey :)

  3. ivan

    09.03.2011

    Reply

    Great article, keep on the good work!

    • Chris

      04.02.2012

      @greg
      Haha ya I thought the same thing.

      Great Article I hope you guys make more of these soon.

    • trevor

      07.04.2012

      Tnx fer compliment but I ws asking for help

  4. ElvenDescendant

    09.13.2011

    Reply

    @Rick Hamaae,
    I am not sure even the stupidest person/hacker would brag about hacking the Canadian Air Force. Even if you did not they could send you to jail for that slim possibility that you did. Enjoy your life, ElvenDescendant.

  5. Andy

    01.22.2012

    Reply

    but this works on the same network (local) right? or can i connect to a friends computer on CA or something like that?

  6. Flopez

    01.31.2012

    Reply

    good article, little complicated for neophytes, but I’m still reading you, by the way, just one question, here you explain how attack… but how to defend?

    thx in advantage

  7. trevor

    07.04.2012

    Reply

    pretty turgid for humans.i am trying w no success to migrate frm a PC to an APPLEMAC. how? I hv a cable frm PC to router but nothing much happens. Migration Assistant simply witters

  8. Josh

    07.08.2012

    Reply

    Does this work to control a windows computer from a mac, or is that completely different?

    Great article though!

    • Mr Matt

      08.15.2012

      Josh, use PuTTY for PC to enable communication via ssh.

Leave a Reply