For Linux VMs, VCM will automatically enable public-key based ssh authentication for your NetID if we can locate your SSH public key. We do this so that you can avoid using the less secure password-based authentication in favor of key based ssh.

When your VM is is being built, VCM checks the Duke directory entry for your NetID. If VCM finds a public key, the key is added to the file


for your NetID account on any newly created VMs.

To setup and enable ssh public key authentication, you should update your Duke directory entry. Assuming you already have ssh keys, you can update your “SSH Public keys” under “Advanced User Options” at:
If you have not already set up ssh keys, here is how to generate a key pair on a Macintosh or Linux machine:

ssh-keygen -t rsa -b 4096

The public key generated will be stored in the file


More details for Macintosh users:

For Windows users:

Is your question or issue not addressed on this page? Or are you still having difficulty? Please contact OIT Service Desk