So you've probably got one or two hosts that you frequently ssh to that have long hostnames. You'd prefer to just alias this to something really short. There's a couple ways to do this:

  1. Hosts file alias. Problem: may overwrite something useful for other network connections.
  2. Shell alias. Problem: too many aliases.
  3. Good shell tab-completion. Problem: I can never get zsh to do intelligent ssh host completion.
  4. SSH configured alias.

So to create an alias for a system add to ~/.ssh/config the following:

Host <alias>
    HostName <real system fqdn>

Some examples:

Host s
    HostName scottr.org
Host b
    HostName 192.168.1.1

After a Host entry can be host specific configuration, and Host can be a pattern (Host *.slashdot.org). So for a host you could disable host key checking, or use a specific key file. Comes in pretty handy.

Posted: Apr 18, 2008 | Tags: tips shell

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