I want to disable the password authentication of the SSH server on my OS X Server. this should be done in /etc/sshd_config, right? But I’m not sure which setting I should change…

  • it still doesn’t work. I don’t know, what I do wrong. Should I post any configs? Commented Jun 14, 2013 at 12:36

2 Answers 2


As any BSD system you should toggle off some options in your sshd_config like I've described in this Stack Overflow answer:

UsePam yes # it will not be used
ChallengeResponseAuthentication no
PasswordAuthentication no
kbdInteractiveAuthentication no
  • I can’t find kbdInteractiveAutentication. The options have a # at the beginning of the line. Should I remove them? Commented Mar 7, 2013 at 11:46
  • the # sign before lines tells about default values. kbdInteractiveAutentication seems to be deprecated but may be used.
    – Eir Nym
    Commented Mar 7, 2013 at 12:32
  • @SebastianSemmler is this answer is helpful for you?
    – Eir Nym
    Commented Mar 9, 2013 at 22:56
  • no, still can login via password Commented Mar 13, 2013 at 11:41
  • 2
    You have to restart remote login
    – Eir Nym
    Commented Mar 13, 2013 at 15:52

In case it helps, I was having trouble with this on 10.10 (Yosemite) and it turned out I was editing the wrong file. /etc/sshd_config is the right one, not /etc/ssh/sshd_config, which is what I was trying based on what man sshd_config says:

SSHD_CONFIG(5)              BSD File Formats Manual             SSHD_CONFIG(5)

     sshd_config -- OpenSSH SSH daemon configuration file


     sshd(8) reads configuration data from /etc/ssh/sshd_config ...
  • 3
    Since 10.11 /etc/ssh/sshd_config - right path Commented Oct 27, 2015 at 12:16
  • @Speakus this was a problem for me, as upgrading to 10.11 meant that password authentication was reenabled and I didn't catch it for a couple months.
    – krs013
    Commented Dec 1, 2015 at 21:59

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