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How to use PuTTY SSH client for Windows

  1. If you do not have putty.exe downloaded already, please see How to install below.
  2. Double click the putty.exe icon on your desktop.
    Putty execution prompt
  3. PuTTY Configuration window will open:
    PuTTY Configuration window
  4. If you have a Saved session for the host you’re connecting to, Select the Saved session
    • Click Load
    • Click Open
  5. If you do not have a Saved session for the host you’re connecting to, fill in the following:
    • Fill in Host Name (Example:
    • Select SSH for Protocol
    • Click SSH menu, and select 2 for Preferred SSH protocol version.
    • Enter appropriate name for Saved Sessions (Example: ugrad)
    • Click Save
    • Click Open
  6. If you do not like the default font and colors, try this:
    • Under PuTTY Configuration Category:Window menu
    • Click Appearance, click Change… button, and try different font
    • Click Colours, and try: Default Foreground, Modify…, Red:40 Green:40: Blue:40 Default Background, Modify…, Red:244 Green:244: Blue:244
    • Click Session, highlight Default Settings or whichever session, Save

How to Install putty.exe on your PC

  1. Download putty.exe from
  2. For Windows, click putty.exe, and the following window will show:
    Download Putty
  3. Click Save, and save it to your desktop.
  4. That’s all you have to do to install PuTTY.
  5. You may want to download PSFTP from the same site, but it is not a GUI version.

X11 Forwarding

To tunnel (forward) X11 traffic, perform the following tasks:

  1. You must be running an X server program such as Xming, Exceed, or X-Win32 on your PC.
  2. You must have the Tunnel X11 connections option selected:
    • For PuTTY,
      PuTTY Configuration Category: SSH Tunnels Menu
      check Enable X11 forwarding
    • For SSH Secure Shell Client,
      Edit -> Settings… -> Tunneling option check Tunnel X11 connections check box
    • Save your settings and restart the SSH client
  3. Log in to the remote host using the SSH client.
  4. Start the X server program on your PC if it’s not already running.
  5. You can now run graphical application on the remote host.
  6. Note the DISPLAY environment variable will be set automatically, and you should not set it yourself on the remote host.