From TuxFamilyFAQ
Revision as of 12:39, 28 September 2015 by Marck (talk | contribs) (→‎How to delete it: + unused account)
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The user represents a physical person (YOU). This is also your login to access the panel and all the services provided by TuxFamily. Creating an user account automatically creates an message inbox at and a jabber ID at They are both activated only if you have at least one project.


A working PC with an internet connection and some common sense ;)


To create your user, use the subscribe link on the Panel and fill in the required fields. Please do provide accurate information in the personal information section.

TuxFamily will NEVER use your personal information for commercial purposes !

Once your account has been created, you should receive an email containing your password. Welcome to TuxFamily!

Registration Tips

  • use only lowercase letters and numbers in the user name field.
  • do NOT create an account for your group! you have to create an account for each user and then create a group
  • do not use special/non english characters in any field(€, æ, ï, ç, ø and ñ won't work...)
  • do not use a tuxfamily email address in the email field or, we won't be able to contact you if the mailing platform is down...
  • again, please use a valid email address. As stated, it will not be given to third parties. Also, should the provided email address not be valid, you will not be able to recover forgotten passwords and such.
    • does not send large volumes of email. You're not going to get a daily TuxFamily newsletter.
    • won't be able to inform you of important changes if your email address is incorrect.

Specific cases

If you already have a dummy account or an account with a bad name, please delete it and create a new one from scratch.


There is no moderation on user registration. However if you give false information, a moderator will be able to ask you to correct them and to refuse your project. Note that a disposable email address as YopMail may also be among the (many) reasons for refusal.

How to manage it? (panel)

There is not much that's vital here... just your user Preferences and personal information etc...

The only options you can find in this section allows you to choose what the server will do with incoming mails at and which shell you will have on the ssh service. (see in the dedicated sections bellow for more informations)

User email

As a TuxFamily member, you're given an email address if one of your projects is validated by the administrator team (yeah, just like antibiotic, it's not automatic :D).

In the user preferences section, you can define how those mails are routed (local mailbox or redirection). Your email password is the same as your panel password.

You have two options:

  • Redirecting all the mails to an other existing account (
  • creating a real mailbox

How to use it

  • (ssl), port 110 (STARTTLS)
  • (ssl) port 143 (STARTTLS)

Outgoing emails : won't provide a smtp server, so you have to use your ISP's smtp server to send emails.

Note : Imaps on port 993 and pop3s on port 995 are still available, but are more or less deprecated nowadays thus considered as legacy interfaces.

Other information

SSH access

With the login informations you are using on the panel, you are now able to connect on our SSH server ( However, by default and for security reasons, your shell account is disabled. Here is how to activate your ssh account:


You have to be at least in one group in order to activate your ssh account.

  • Login to the panel with your usual username and password
  • In your preferences, select the shell you want to use (for example: /bin/bash)
  • Wait for at least 10 minutes
  • ssh yourself on with the username and password of the panel.


As with all the services provided by TuxFamily, there are very few restrictions on the SSH service. You should be able to do regular file management tasks.

Be careful, think before you type !

If you don't really know what you are doing, we recommend you just use the regular FTP access ;)

For now, users crontabs won’t be executed. Group cron jobs can now be created in the panel, see Cron/En.

SSH usage for GNU/Linux users

Configuring your public and private keys

To use SSH, you first need to generate a pair of SSH keys, if you haven't already done so. To generate these keys, open a console window and type:

$ ssh-keygen -t rsa

You will be asked for a passphrase. Once given, your SSH key pair will be created in the .ssh subdirectory of your home directory. is the public key, id_rsa is the private key.

For TuxFamily usage, the public key will need to go into a file called 'ssh_keys', and you should change the permissions so that only you have read/write access to the file. This can be done by:

$ cat ~/.ssh/ >> ~/ssh_keys
$ chmod 400 ~/ssh_keys

IMPORTANT: Take care to remember your passphrase; you will be asked for it when you login into your shell account.

Uploading the public key

You can upload your SSH public key to the TuxFamily servers, and thereby avoid having to provide your SSH passphrase every time SSH is invoked (by Subversion or Git, for example).

  • To upload it, you will need to FTP to (the same login and password as for your tuxfamily account).
  • The public key will need to go into a file in your home directory called 'ssh_keys'. Make sure that only you have read and write access to this file.

Tools such as ssh-copy-id provided by Debian/Ubuntu will not work because they expect the public key to be stored at /.ssh/authorized_keys on the server. One way to copy the key from the shell is:

On yourmachine:
$ scp ~/.ssh/
enter your tuxfamily password

$ ssh "cat >> ssh_keys"
enter your tuxfamily password again

Ok, that should be it. Test with:
$ ssh 
You should just get in :-)

Don't forget to chmod 600 your ssh key

Launching an SSH session from your machine

This can be done with two commands, but you will first need to kill all ssh-agent processes if any are running. Because Gnome and other environments can launch ssh agents, you always need check for them. Killing all running ssh-agent processes can be done by:

$killall ssh-agent

The two commands that will allow your machine to communicate with the TuxFamily servers via SSH are:

$ ssh-agent $SHELL
$ ssh-add ~/.ssh/id_rsa

If everything went well, you won't have to provide your passphrase for every subsequent SSH connection initiated from the current shell.

To avoid having to manually open each SSH session, you could add the following to your .bashrc file:

if [ -f .ssh-agent ]; then
killall ssh-agent
ssh-agent > .ssh-agent
ssh-add ~/.ssh/id_rsa

Note : You might also want to use KeyChain to store your passphrase.

SSH usage for Windows users

You will first need to dowload and install PuTTY.

Open PuTTYgen, click on generate, and then move your mouse for about 5 or 6 seconds to generate some randomness for the key. Enter your passphrase, and then save your private key by pressing the "save Private Key" button. Save this key in a safe place, so that you don't lose it and nobody else can access it.

Now save the public key with the "Save Public Key" button. Save it to a file called "ssh_keys" and upload it to (using the same login and password as your TuxFamily account). Be sure to change the permissions of the uploaded file so that only you can read, write, or execute the ssh_keys file; you should be able to do this with your FTP client.

SSH for windows-based SVN users

The key created as described above will work for, but there are problems with using PuTTYgen-created keys with Subversion.

What you will want to do is login to and create a new pair of keys, following the directions given above for GNU/Linux users. Your ssh_keys file should then contain two public keys. Move the id_rsa (private key file) out of the .ssh directory and download it to your windows machine using FTP. Open PuTTYgen and import the id_rsa file and save a new private key file. This new private key file should allow you to use svn+ssh.

After you have done so, you will want to open PuTTY and save a session with the following configuration:

Session->Protocol: SSH
Session->Saved Sessions: (the name for the saved session is your choice, but I recommend
SSH->Prefered SSH Protocol version: 2
SSH->Auth->Private Key file for auth: Browse for the private key file that you generated with PuTTYgen.

Go back to the "Session" menu, and click on "Save" before clicking on "Open". When you click on "Open", if a window opens and then quickly closes, then you should be good to go. If not, then there's a problem.

Using Pageant to store the passphrases for your SSH keys

Pageant is part of the PuTTY suite.

Launch Pageant and it will add itself as an icon to your taskbar. double-click on that icon to open the main Pageant window.

Click on the "Add Key" button and select your private key file. Pageant will ask you for the key's passphrase. Once you provide pageant with the passphrase, you will not need to re-enter your passphrase for any subsequent ssh connection while Pageant is running.

However, note that if you logout, or restart your computer, Pageant will quit, and you will have to re-enter your passphrases the next time you establish an SSH session.

You might want to automate this somewhat by creating a Windows shortcut which calls pageant with the path to your private key file as its argument along the lines of:

"C:\Program Files\PuTTY\pageant.exe" "D:\directory_path_to\\my_key.ppk"

If you place this shortcut in your startup folder, then whenever you login to windows, a small dialog box will be patiently waiting for you to enter your passphrase.

disabling your SSH access

If you want to disable your ssh access, go back to the panel and select the /bin/falseshell shell. 10 minutes later, your shell account will be disabled.

Guideline on the SSH server

Please be nice, as usual on TuxFamily, there are very few restrictions on this service. We would really like to keep the ssh service open for everybody ;)

How to delete it

If you don't create or join a project, your unused user account will be automatically deleted after one month. If you create or join a project, it will never be automatically deleted but you can delete it by using the "delete" button on the panel in your user section.