Using networking effectively inside IIT Bombay : SSHing to hostel room

Having LAN is great for downloading movies and other stuff from other connected computers really fast. And perhaps it is also good for playing those taxi games. These are good enough reason for LAN to exists in the life of an undergraduate. But a man (are you a man?) also need to work (especially when he has finished his 2nd year of engineering) and how can one uses this LAN to work effectively in IIT Bombay. First, do yourself a favour, install Linux in your machine before continuing. And do not pollute my blog by accessing it from windows [making a sarcastic face].

Let’s not be Homo Neanderthal and promise ourself that we will not carry our laptop and its charger everywhere we go inside the campus (unless there is no escape, such as showing-off your new-laptop etc.). Install openssh in your machine and make sure that port 22 is listening to incoming connections. You can check it by nmap  command. You need to install it first. It is more powerful than primitive pinging (ping

dilawar@hobbes:~$ nmap localhost

Starting Nmap 5.21 ( ) at 2013-02-21 21:29 IST
Nmap scan report for localhost (
Host is up (0.00027s latency).
Not shown: 995 closed ports
22/tcp   open  ssh
53/tcp   open  domain
80/tcp   open  http
631/tcp  open  ipp
9418/tcp open  gitNmap done: 1 IP address (1 host up) scanned in 0.15 seconds

Great! We were interested in 22/tcp port which is open. Now note down the ip of your system which you can get it by ip addr or ifconfig command. For example my ip is and username is dilawar.  Now my laptop is ready to accept any connection from any other computer on LAN. Leave it on and roam in campus like a leopard. You can access your laptop from anywhere now.

Now I go to pc-lab and get a computer with terminal (repeat with me 4 times, Windows sucks!). From there you can check if you can ping your system. You must know the ip of your laptop

Now I can connect to my pc using ssh command. Do the following.

ssh -X dilawar@

And launch any command from terminal. Make sure to write capital X and not small x. You can also use capital Y instead of ‘y’. Now next time you see someone carrying his/her laptop with him/her, you can call them idiots and laugh like a maniac (in your head).

You should also learn to use scp command. Install pinfo and say pinfo scp and read the damn thing.

In next post, we’ll learn how to setup git repository on sharada server (or any server where you have account which you can connect to using ssh.)


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