SSH to a Node in an NKS Cluster Edit on GitHub Request doc changes

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Whenever possible, you will want to use Dockerfiles or the kubectl command to interact with a cluster. However, there are some cases when you may need (or want) to SSH directly to a node in an NKS cluster.

To use this feature, you will need an NKS account. If you don’t have one already, you can sign up for a free 30-day trial with no credit card required at

If you are familiar with using SSH to interact with a Linux server, the username is core (on ContainerLinux) or ubuntu (on Ubuntu). Download the SSH keys from your NKS Profile page, then use them to authenticate on the node.

You can log in as the user core (on ContainerLinux) or ubuntu (on Ubuntu) with a command like:

ssh -i ~/.ssh/id_rsa core@

Get the SSH Keys

To improve security, NKS nodes use SSH keys for authentication instead of passwords. You will need to download and install these SSH keys before you can SSH to a node in the cluster. You will need to install the SSH keys on your desktop computer.

Log in to NetApp Kubernetes Service (NKS) and go to Organization > Setup. In the SSH Keys section, click the "download" icon to download your SSH keypair.

Unzip the contents of this file, and move both files to the desired directory on your computer. By common convention, this directory is /home/[your username]/.ssh on Linux and Mac, and C:\[your username]\.ssh on Windows.

SSH to the Node

To find the public IP for the node, go to the NKS Control Plane and click the cluster’s name. Note the Public IP address for the node.

Open a Terminal (on Mac) or PuTTY (on Windows) session and SSH to the node:

ssh -i [/path/to/id_rsa] [login name]@[public IP address]

The login name will depend on the node’s operating system:

  • ContainerLinux: core

  • Ubuntu: ubuntu

For example, the command to connect to a ContainerLinux node at IP address when you have stored your SSH keys in the /home/JDoe/.ssh directory is:

ssh -i /home/JDoe/.ssh/id_rsa core@

This will connect you to the node.