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     ssh-agent - authentication agent

     ssh-agent [-a bind_address] [-c | -s ] [-d]
          [command [args]...]

     ssh-agent [-c | -s] -k

     ssh-agent is a program to hold private keys used for  public
     key authentication (RSA, DSA). ssh-agent is often started at
     the beginning of a login session. All other windows or  pro-
     grams  are  started  as  clients  to  the ssh-agent program.
     Through use of  environment  variables,  the  agent  can  be
     located  and automatically used for authentication when log-
     ging in to other  machines  using  ssh(1).  See  the  System
     Administration Guide: Security Services.

     If a command line is given, this is executed as a subprocess
     of the agent. When the command dies, so does the agent.

     The agent initially does not have any private keys. Keys are
     added  using  ssh-add(1),  which  sends  the identity to the
     agent. Several identities can be stored in  the  agent;  the
     agent can automatically use any of these identities. Use the
     -l option in ssh-add(1) to display the identities  currently
     held by the agent.

     The agent is run in the user's  local  host.  Authentication
     data  need not be stored on any other machine, and authenti-
     cation passphrases never go over the  network.  However,  if
     the  connection  to  the  agent is forwarded over SSH remote
     logins, the user can use the privileges given by the identi-
     ties anywhere in the network in a secure way.

     There are two main ways to get an agent  setup.  Either  you
     let  the  agent  start  a  new  subcommand  into  which some
     environment variables are exported, or  you  let  the  agent
     print the needed shell commands (either sh(1) or csh(1) syn-
     tax can be generated) which can be evalled  in  the  calling
     shell.  Later, use ssh(1) to look at these variables and use
     them to establish a connection to the agent.

     A    unix-domain    socket     is     created     (/tmp/ssh-
     XXXXXXXX/agent.pid) and the name of this socket is stored in
     the SSH_AUTH_SOCK environment variable. The socket  is  made
     accessible  only  to the current user. This method is easily
     abused by root or another instance of the same user.

     The SSH_AGENT_PID environment  variable  holds  the  agent's

     The agent exits automatically when the command given on  the
     command line terminates.

     The following options are supported:

     -a bind_address    Binds the agent to the unix-domain socket
                        bind_address.  The  default  is /tmp/ssh-

     -c                 Generates  C-shell  commands  on  stdout.
                        This  is  the  default if SHELL indicates
                        that it is a csh style of shell.

     -d                 Debug mode. When this  option  is  speci-
                        fied, ssh-agent will not fork.

     -k                 Kills the current  agent  (given  by  the
                        SSH_AGENT_PID environment variable).

     -s                 Generates  Bourne   shell   commands   on
                        stdout. This is the default if SHELL does
                        not indicate that it is a  csh  style  of

     The following exit values are returned:

     0    Successful completion.

     1    An error occurred.



         Unix-domain sockets used to contain  the  connection  to
         the  authentication  agent. These sockets should only be
         readable by the owner. The sockets are removed when  the
         agent exits.

     See attributes(5) for descriptions of the  following  attri-

    |       ATTRIBUTE TYPE        |       ATTRIBUTE VALUE       |
    | Availability                | SUNWsshu                    |
    | Interface Stability         | Committed                   |

     ssh(1), ssh-add(1), ssh-keygen(1), sshd(1M), attributes(5)

     System Administration Guide: Security Services

Man pages from Solaris 10 Update 8. See docs.sun.com and www.oracle.com for further documentation and Solaris information.