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Adding a User's Public SSH Key to a Linux Server

Modified on Fri, Jun 04, 2021, 8:45 AM by Administrator Categorized as Linux


This article explains how to add the public key for a specific user to a Linux server. On a Windows machine, this key can be generated by following this procedure.


1. Ensure the PUB file follows the naming convention "FirstName_LastName.pub"

2. Ensure the PUB file has a carriage return as its final character.

3. Upload the PUB file to the /home/ec2-user folder.

NOTE: This assumes the user will login as the ec2-user user. If they login as a different user, replace "ec2-user" with their username.

4. Open a PuTTY session to the server

5. Change to the current user's SSH folder

cd ~/.ssh

6. Backup the authorized_keys file

cp authorized_keys ak_yyyy-mm-dd

7. Append the user's public key to the authorized_keys file

cat ~/FirstName_LastName.pub >> authorized_keys

8. Verify that the key was appended.

cat authorized_keys

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