How to Convert OpenSSH keys to Putty (.ppk) on Linux

PuTTYgen is a key generator for creating SSH keys for PuTTY. PuTTYgen is comparable in certain respects to the ssh-keygen tool. PuTTYgen can create public and private key pairs (in .ppk file format). In addition, PuTTYgen can also be used to convert keys to and from other formats. On Windows, PuTTYGen is a graphical tool. A command-line version is available for Linux.

When you run puttygen, it does three things. Firstly, it either loads an existing key file (if you specified keyfile), or generates a new key (if you specified keytype). Then, it optionally makes modifications to the key (changing the comment and/or the passphrase); finally, it outputs the key, or some information about the key, to a file.

How to Convert OpenSSH keys to Putty (.ppk) on Linux


How to use puttygen

On Arch Linux its simple…

pacman -S putty


On RHEL/Centos:

yum install putty



dnf install putty


Debian/Ubuntu try…

apt install putty-tools


Then cd to the path of key(s):

puttygen keyname -o keyname.ppk

Make sure you’ve replaced the “keyname” with your private key filename.


Reference: – Putty official page. – ssh-keygen tool. – Command line. – PuTTYgen Windows.


Also, check out Remmina (supports RDP, SSH, VNC and more)


First published: May 16, 2013 | Last updated: Jan 4th, 2023. 

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  1. I’m confused by what these ppk files actually are.

    Will it help me jump into an SSH session without typing credentials or is this similar to SSH keys but specifically for PuTTY? I’ve always seen PuTTYgen when after installing but never actually look at it.

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