Unable to SSH to the Droplet; Forced to use the access console

March 21, 2019 378 views
Deployment CI/CD Ubuntu 16.04

If I try to connect using SSH client to my droplet, I get the following message.

*‘Permission Denied (Public Key)’

I have been relying on Access Console option in the Web console to access my droplet and push my updates. I would like to SSH to my Droplet. I have been able to do the same with my other accounts.

1 Answer


I don’t blame you, the web console is really best saved for emergency situations. SSH will likely always be the more friendly protocol for this.

The simple version of the error is this:
Password login is disabled, and your SSH client is not loading a private key that has been accepted by the server for login.

If you created your droplet with an SSH key but do not use that key, we disabled password login for you. Otherwise, it’s still disabled, just not sure who did it :)

You’ll want to edit /etc/ssh/sshd_config over the web console, and look for things like this:

PermitRootLogin no
PasswordAuthentication no

It could be any combination of that, but you want both of them to be set to “yes” instead. When finished, restart SSH:

Debian / Ubuntu:

systemctl restart ssh

CentOS / Fedora:

systemctl restart sshd

Now you should be able to log in using your password. Keep it secure. There’s an xkcd for that:


Have another answer? Share your knowledge.