A while back we discussed about 12 powerful PuTTY add-ons. When you are working on production support or on a critical project that require 24×7 support, it is essential that you connect to the remote Linux server from anywhere. I found having a SSH client on my phone is very convenient for a quick status check and troubleshooting.
MidpSSH is a SSH and Telnet client for mobile device.
This is a step-by-step guide on how to connect to a Linux server from blackberry phone using MidpSSH software.
1. Download MidpSSH on BlackBerry Phone
From the blackberry browser, go to http://www.xk72.com/wap and click on ‘Latest Development Release (v1.7.3)’ as shown in the Fig below. This will display several download options for blackberry phone. Select the BlackBerry Build OS 4.x as shown in the Fig below.
- SSH1 Build
- SSH2 Lite Build MIDIP 2.0 MIDIP 1.0
- SSH1 Lite Build
- BlackBerry Build OS3.x OS 4.x
- BlackBerry Enterprise Only build
- No Obfuscation Build
Fig: MidpSSH (SSH Client) Download Page for BlackBerry
When you select download, you may get a warning message — “The application does not contain a signature. It might not be from a trusted source. Do you want to proceed?”. Select ‘Yes’. This will start the download automatically as shown below.
2. Install MidpSSH on BlackBerry Phone
After download, it will automatically install the application and give you the following installation successful message. Click on ‘OK’, which will display the MidpSSH icon on the blackberry home screen as shown below.
3. Create a new SSH Client session and connect to Linux Server from Phone
Create a SSH client connection by giving the ip-address of the Linux server you would like to connect to from your blackberry phone as shown in the Fig below.
- Alias – Enter the connection name.
- Host – Enter the ip-address of the server.
- Type: SSH, Telnet. Select SSH.
- Authentication: For SSH Connection Only. Optional. Leave this empty.
- Username: Enter the linux user name.
- Password: Enter the linux account password.
- Connection Type: Default, TCP/IP, BES, WiFi. Select Default.
Once the session is created, select the session using the trackball, which will give the option to connect as shown in the Fig below. This will prompt the message — “The application MidpSSH has attempted to access a low-level network connection. Would you like to allow this?.” Select “Yes” for this message, which will connect to the remote Linux server.
The default font size on the SSH client is very small. This makes the Linux prompt really tiny and practically not readable even with a 20/20 vision. The solution is simple — increase the font size.
4. Change the MidpSSH Font Size, Background and Foreground Color
To make the Linux prompt and command output readable, you can increase the Font size. From the MidPSSH menu -> Select Settings -> Select Fonts and set the following values accordingly as shown in the Fig below.
- Font Size: Tiny, Device, LCD 3×6 etc. By default Tiny is selected. Changed this to Device.
- LCD Font Mode: RBG or BGR.
- Foreground Color
- Background Color
Apart from the Fonts, the Setting menu has the following options as shown in the Fig below.
- Restore Defaults
5. Enter Linux Commands on MidpSSH Client session
There are two methods to execute Linux command on the MidpSSH client.
Method 1: Type Linux Commands Interactively
From the MidpSSH client, when it is connected to the Linux server, click on the blackberry trackball, which will display the input-menu as shown below. Select ‘Type’, which will allow you to interactively enter the Linux commands.
Metod 2: Enter Multiple Linux Command Together
From the MidpSSH client, when it is connected to the Linux server, click on the blackberry trackball, which will display the input-menu. Select ‘Input’, which will allow you to enter multiple Linux commands. Once you’ve entered all the command you can execute them together as shown below.
In the example below, three commands — clear, pwd and cat /etc/redhat-release are executed one-by-one in a batch mode.
One final word of caution, for those who have mastered the art of checking emails on blackberry while driving, may be tempted to use MidpSSH client while driving. Please don’t touch your phone while driving. Be responsible and use hands-free device to talk. If you think I’m joking about this caution, you have to see the kind of activities people do in their car while stuck in traffic on the 405 freeway in Los Angeles.