Fix: Linux SSH error "connection refused"

"Connection refused" is an error message that appears when the SSH client cannot connect to the SSH server. The "Connection refused" error in SSH can be caused by various issues, but they are usually related to problems with the SSH service, network connectivity, or firewall settings.

Here are some possible ways to resolve the issue:

SSH service not running

If the SSH service is not running on the remote server, the SSH client won't be able to connect to it. To troubleshoot SSH "Connection refused" error, you can attempt alternative methods of connecting to the remote server such as using console access. If successful, you need to verify whether the SSH service is active on the server.

You can use the command "systemctl status sshd" to check the SSH service status. If the service is not running, you can start it with "systemctl start sshd". Moreover, to ensure that the SSH service starts automatically when the server boots, you can use "systemctl enable sshd".

Incorrect SSH Configuration

If the SSH configuration on the server is incorrect, it may prevent SSH connections from being established. If the SSH service is running, you need to check the SSH configuration on the server. Check the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file and ensure that the SSH port is set to the correct value. The default port for SSH is 22, but the server may be configured to use a different port. If the SSH port has been changed, specify the correct port number when connecting to the server.

IP, Port, or Hostname not correct

If the IP address or hostname used to connect to the server is incorrect, the SSH client cannot establish a connection. It's crucial to ensure you use the correct SSH port to access a remote server. The SSH port is responsible for allowing access to the server, so if you don't specify the correct port number, you'll receive the error message "Connection refused" when attempting to establish a remote connection.

There are several ways to access a Linux VPS if you cannot access the server using SSH.

1. Web-based terminal - Some VPS providers offer a web-based terminal that allows you to access the command line through a web browser.

2. API (Application Programming Interface) - If your VPS provider offers an API, you can use it to automate tasks and manage your VPS programmatically.

3. Control Panel - Some VPS providers offer a web-based control panel that allows you to manage your VPS, including accessing the command line.

Firewall blocking SSH

If a firewall is enabled on the server, it may be blocking SSH traffic. This could be due to incorrect firewall rules or the SSH port not being allowed through the firewall.

Network connectivity issues

If there are network connectivity issues between the client and server, such as a network outage or packet loss, the SSH connection may not be established.

Server overload

If the server is overloaded with too many SSH connections or other tasks, it may refuse new SSH connections. This is more common on servers with limited resources.

In general, the "Connection refused" error in SSH can stem from a range of factors, with common culprits being troubles with the SSH service, firewall configurations, or issues with network connectivity.

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