пʼятниця, 21 січня 2011 р.

shellinabox: ajax web-based terminal for your linux


In case you are as lucky as me to work in banking were everything is secured and checked, you may miss access to your home box just as deeply as me. I managed to ssh to my box through corporate proxy one day, but the next day I found it blocked. I was desperate.

Luckily world hates firewalls and loves to innovate. There are quite a handful of web-based consoles available now. I didn't want to spend half a day comparing them so just started with shellinabox (http://code.google.com/p/shellinabox/). It is a web-based AJAX vt100 compatible terminal. It can export command-line tools that have interactive interface of some kind to the web and you can access that from anywere. Wave bye-bye to your PuTTy client, the only thing you need now is a web browser.

The project hosts prebuilt packages for apt-based distros, so you should have no problem in case you use either Ubuntu or Debian. For other distros you'll need to build it from sources. All that stuff can be found here (http://code.google.com/p/shellinabox/downloads/list)

Go grab one and install it with

grim@kepler:~$ wget http://shellinabox.googlecode.com/files/shellinabox_2.10-1_amd64.deb
grim@kepler:~$ sudo dpkg -i shellinabox_2.10-1_amd64.deb


In a few seconds you'll get it running at https://$lt;your-server-address>:4200/.

It has SSL preconfigured out of the box and self-signed certificate is generated for 20 years which should be enough I think. If you need to be 100% secure, you're better export it, carry around with you and import in those browsers you use most, so you could be sure that nobody standing in between you and classified on your box. I've imported the certificate at work and at my home PC for example.

Another thing is that port 4200 was blocked from work too. Bastards! If you hate your security folks just as ultimately as me, I'm sure need to drink some beer with you and share my pain.

What I did I put it behind Apache on the same box, so I could access it just as any other site on the web. Casting some sourcery onto openssl, mod_proxy and shellinabox parameters did the trick and it was nice one. Check it out on the shot!

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