[clug] Automating SSH scripts with passphrase'd keys

elvis elvis at dogonfire.com
Tue Apr 8 13:23:34 GMT 2008

I know this isn't really answering the question but I have used Bacula 
(www.bacula.org) to back up several linux and windows boxes for a few years 
now. Excellent documentation and very active development and a good mailing 

On Mon, 24 Mar 2008, Li-Jie Wong wrote:
> I've recently attempted to set up automated ssh scripts to perform
> automated backups with a passphrase'd key. However it seems a little
> tricker than I expected, and will attempt to share the various points
> that I learnt in this attempt. I wouldn't be surprised if I took a
> more roundabout way than necessary and would appreciate any tips on a
> shorter way to go about it.
> ssh-agent / ssh-add seems to have quite a short default time-out, so I
> created an auth script for me to run that runs "ssh-add -t 1w" to set
> the time-out to one week.
> However ssh-agent doesn't necessarily seem to start automatically so I
> added ssh-agent to the auth script and wrote the output to a file
> Found out that my jobs in cron couldn't get the ssh-agent details
> somehow, even though I had specified #!/bin/bash in my backup script
> (which I think assumed would execute .bashrc) and have the ssh-agent
> environmental variables sourced in .bashrc
> I ended up sourcing the ssh-agent environmental variables again in my
> backup script and it seems to work now.
> I'm not sure if it's possible to get ssh-agent to run once (under my
> user) on startup. Perhaps I could use sudo? Perhaps I should write a
> weekly cron job to remind me to run auth before the time out.
> --
> Li-Jie Wong
> [URL] http://eccentri.cc

If you transpose the three letters in HAL you get IBM.

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