System: SSH agent

The ssh-agent service allows adding multiple keys (including the ones protected with a passphrase) to a single pool of ssh keys, which can be shared across multiple projects.

The default ssh keys (~/.ssh/id_rsa, ~/.ssh/id_dsa, ~/.ssh/id_ecdsa) are loaded into the agent automatically.
On macOS and Windows this happens when the Docksal VM is (re)started, on Linux - whenever fin project start is used.

Project setup

To start using the ssh-agent service, add the following configuration option under the volumes section of the cli service in the project’s .docksal/docksal.yml file:

  # Shared ssh-agent socket
  - docksal_ssh_agent:/.ssh-agent:ro

Reset the cli container fin project reset cli.

Command line reference

See fin help ssh-key for more information and usage guidelines.

$ fin help ssh-key
Manage SSH keys loaded into Docksal

  Private SSH keys loaded into the secure docksal-ssh-agent service are accessible to all project containers.	
  This allows containers to connect to the external SSH servers that require SSH keys	
  without a need to copy over the key into the container every time.	
  Default keys id_rsa/id_dsa/id_ecdsa are loaded automatically on every project start.	

Usage: fin ssh-key <command> [params]

  add [key-name]           	Add a private SSH key from $HOME/.ssh by file name
                           	Adds all default keys (id_rsa/id_dsa/id_ecdsa) if no file name is given.
  ls                       	List SSH keys loaded in the docksal-ssh-agent
  rm                       	Remove all keys from the docksal-ssh-agent
  new [key-name]           	Generate a new SSH key pair

  fin ssh-key add          	Loads all SSH keys with default names: id_rsa/id_dsa/id_ecdsa from $HOME/.ssh/
  fin ssh-key server_rsa   	Loads the key stored in $HOME/.ssh/server_id_rsa into the agent
  fin ssh-key new server2_rsa	Generates a new SSH key pair in ~/.ssh/server2_id_rsa

Automatically Add Keys

Adding SSH keys automatically whenever Docksal project is started can be done by defining special variable(s) within the $HOME/.docksal/docksal.env file. All variables should be prefixed with SECRET_SSH_KEY_ and a small identifier of the key. After that has been done, restart your project with fin project restart, and the keys will be added.

For example, assuming you have a private SSH key $HOME/.ssh/acquia_key, you would define a variable:


When creating the variable use the file name within $HOME/.ssh/ directory as the variable value. NOTE: the private key should be referenced, not the public one.