I'm not making keys for these service users. I'm going to use them to
run scripts and monitors in the way our present (RH7.2-based) setup
does. I put my public key in the .ssh/authorized_keys file for each of
these users. I have to run ssh-agent/ssh-add on my local machine, then I
can jump right into the first server as whichever service user account
I've set up this way. That part already works. It's hopping to the next
server that asks for a password.

Most of the documentation I found suggests it's possible to do this, and
I can already do it with ssh-3.2.9-1 on our old setup. I wonder if there
is something specific about redhat's build of openssh or pam that will
intercept these requests, or if there is a directive I must set in
ssh_config|sshd_config or /etc/pam.d/sshd to allow it. Our old setup
also allows jumping to/through root users, but there may be different
rules for that in a Fedora 5 configuration as well.

When I'm running tails on all the logs, the ssh connection reqest never
shows up on the second server, so I strongly suspect that PAM is
intercepting the request and asking for a password. However, I was
determined to ask the experts in case it was a common mistake or
something that simply is not possible under openssh.

By setting my public key in system users I should be able to jump from
one machine to the next, or scp files around. Say in the ideal setup for
development servers I'd have a cronuser, scriptuser, monitoruser,
cvsuser, and root (I know it's poor security) all configured with my
public key and that I could jump in and out of each not only from my own
Linux Desktop, but through each user to each user on other servers in
the development chain. After reading all the documentation and FAQs I
could find, I had assumed ssh-agent on the desktop and agent forwarding
on the servers would be sufficient, but something is blocking the
forwarding, or I'm way off and this isn't how it's meant to work.


Jason Powers

John Paul Heaton wrote:
> You can get a detailed idea of what ssh is doing by using the -v flag.
> You can get more detail by using more v's, up to three, like -vvv. It
> is a a good way to see what ssh is doing.
> As for your problem, does the "otheruser" have the same public-key as
> "someuser" in the authorized_keys file?
> John
> On Wed, 4 Oct 2006, Jason Powers wrote:
>> Date: Wed, 04 Oct 2006 18:18:02 -0400
>> From: Jason Powers
>> To: secureshell@securityfocus.com
>> Subject: Agent Forwarding Question for the list
>> Resent-Date: Thu, 5 Oct 2006 08:53:26 -0600 (MDT)
>> Resent-From: secureshell-return-8989@securityfocus.com
>> I have looked through the archives and googled this pretty thoroughly,
>> I'm having a tough time finding someone else who has asked the same
>> question previously. There's a lot of information about openssh, but
>> surprisingly little detail about port forwarding. Either it works for
>> everyone all the time, or my configuration is a little bit particular
>> compared to others.
>> We would like to change from ssh2 to openssh for all of our linux
>> servers. I am testing new equipment with Fedora Core 5 with openssh
>> configured out of the box. I have no need to forward X11 windows, I
>> just want to be able to jump from machine to machine with a terminal,
>> ssh and scp, and use different accounts without having to type a
>> password. A lot of our production process revolves around this, so it
>> pretty much has to work for me to convert us.
>> I made users and keys with openssh instead of using the old ones, put
>> them in the accounts I wanted to jump to on multiple servers. I set
>> the perms on the authorized_keys files to 600. I set the ssh_config
>> file in /etc/ to say ForwardAgent yes.
>> Now let's say that I have a linux desktop and two linux servers,
>> assuming I've configured things correctly, then from the desktop box I
>> should be able to:
>> me@desktop> ssh-add
>> (type pass for key)
>> me@desktop> ssh someuser@server1
>> now from that terminal
>> someuser@server1> ssh otheruser@server2
>> It asks me for a password when I try to jump to the second server. I
>> can put the password in and it works, but I think at this point it
>> should be forwarding the key.
>> I have tail -f running on the secure log on each machine in question
>> so I can see if there's anything happening.
>> It does not enter into the log on the target machine that I am
>> attempting to open a connection while it waits for a password, so I
>> was thinking that pam may be intercepting the request and demanding one.
>> Has anyone known pam to do such a thing?
>> Am I seeing a common non-error?
>> Is this a situation where ssh-agent on the servers may be interfering
>> with the one from the desktop?
>> Do I have to turn on X11forwarding to get agent forwarding on these
>> servers, which don't even have x installed?
>> Does this have something to do with xauth on the servers, or is that
>> only for x11 forwarding?
>> Thanks
>> Jason Powers

> --------------------------------------------
> -- John Heaton - Computer System Engineer --
> -- George Mason University --
> -- Information Technology Unit --
> -- Systems Engineering (ESM) --
> -- * email: jheaton@gmu.edu --
> -- * phone: 703.993.3558 --
> --------------------------------------------