cannot ssh to machine on lan when it has no internet connection

Simon Morgan sjmorgan at
Thu Aug 25 16:47:43 GMT 2005

On 8/25/05, Ben Pratt <ben at> wrote:
> I'm not sure if this will work or not but try setting up /etc/hosts to
> reflect your LAN. I had a friend who had issues when, even though he was
> connected to the Internet, he had DNS messed up on his FreeBSD system.
> I'm thinking the SSH server is trying to do some DNS lookups and if you
> set your hosts file to have the information about the client machine
> that may be resolved.

Thanks for the reply. That would probably fix it but ideally I'd like to fix the
root of the problem. Not being able to resolve the IP of a client really
shouldn't stop them from connecting using SSH and if there's a bug
in there somewhere I'd like to get it fixed so that it doesn't bite
anybody else.

I'm thinking dnscache would probably have to timeout on all the
root servers before sending a response to SSH saying it couldn't
resolve the hostname which might be the cause of the problem, but
that shouldn't affect SSH which should timeout waiting for a
response from dnscache. The authentication timeout in auth.log
appears to indicate that SSH is counting any delay in name
resolution towards that of authentication which seems to me to
be very broken behaviour considering that SSH isn't accepting
any form of authentication, at least not keyboard-interactive.

Basically I'm waiting for somebody to tell me that I've made some
stupid mistake otherwise I'll file a bug.


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