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How to enable SSH on the 8″ Insignia Infocast (Chumby)

“Secure Shell or SSH is a network protocol that allows data to be exchanged using a secure channel between two networked devices.” (Secure Shell – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia ).

What does this mean, and why should it matter to a Chumby developer? To put it simply, SSH allows us to easily connect to the Chumby device through the command line. In turn, this let’s us force the Chumby to do our bidding (insert evil laugh here). What might you want to tell your Chumby device to do? Well, for starters, you might want to tell it to run your application. This is by far the fastest and easiest way to test and debug your Chumby apps. If you’d like to learn more about creating and testing Chumby apps, you can read my full blog post on the topic HERE! But first, make sure you read through this tutorial and get SSH enabled on your Chumby!

Before you can enable SSH, you will first need to unlock the mysteries of the hidden Geek Menu. If you are unfamiliar with how to access the Geek Menu, I recommend that you read my blog post “Accessing the Geek Menu on the Insignia Infocast 8″” before continuing. If you’re already skilled in the arts of Chumby geekery, then feel free to move to the next step!


Once you’ve made your way into the Geek Menu, enabling SSH is a simple matter of clicking the button labeled “SSHD.” You should see a small Chumby logo appear next to the button, then quickly disappear. SSH is now enabled on your chumby device!

It’s important to note that SSH will only stay enabled until you reboot your Chumby. If you shut down your device, then start it up again, you will need to go through these steps again to re-enable SSH.

If you’re lazy like me, and don’t want to have to go through the process of enabling SSH each time you restart your device, you can SSH into your Chumby and enter the following command:

Once this command has been entered, SSHD will be enabled on your Chumby device by default! You can find more info. on this as well ass other cool tips and tricks at you can do with SSH at: Chumby tricks – ChumbyWiki

That’s all there is to it! Now that you have SSH enabled, why not check out my post on “Connecting to a Chumby Device Over SSH.”

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