Change SSH Welcome Banner on Ubuntu

Every time I connect to my Ubuntu development server through my ssh client, I receive the same message and I’m getting tired of seeing it, so I decided to change the message to something else.

Here’s the message that I get every time:

Linux superfast 2.6.20-16-generic #2 SMP Thu Jun 7 19:00:28 UTC 2007 x86_64

The programs included with the Ubuntu system are free software;
the exact distribution terms for each program are described in the
individual files in /usr/share/doc/*/copyright.

Ubuntu comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY, to the extent permitted by
applicable law.

Last login: Mon Aug 13 01:05:46 2007 from ipaddress removed

geek@superfast:~$

Changing this message requires editing two different files. The first three sections can be modified by editing the following file:

/etc/motd

This file contains the linux build number as well as the Ubuntu warranty message. I don’t find this particularly useful, so I removed all of it and replaced it with my own message.

To disable the last login message (which I don’t recommend doing), you will need to edit the following file in sudo mode:

/etc/ssh/sshd_config

Find this line in the file and change the yes to no as shown:

PrintLastLog no

Now when you login, you’ll get a blank prompt, although I wouldn’t necessarily recommend it because it’s useful to see the last login to the system for security reasons. This is my prompt now:

This is a superfast system. Please max out the cpu accordingly.

Last login: Mon Aug 13 01:24:14 2007 from ipaddress removed
geek@superfast:~$

Linux is really great.

Lowell Heddings, better known online as the How-To Geek, spends all his free time bringing you fresh geekery on a daily basis. You can follow him on if you'd like.

  • Published 08/12/07
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