How to convert SSH key for Putty

Do you need to work on both MAC and Windows PC? Do you want to use the same SSH private key on both? Then keep reading because it’s not impossible.

If you are on a MAC or other Linux varieties that use openSSH for it’s private key generation we can take that key and convert it to Putty’s PPK format.

I’ve only done this once so I’m a newbie, here’s the steps I did to make it happen.

I sent the  SSH private key from my MAC to the Windows machine. To be extra careful with security you might want to do this through something that is encrypted (SSL) like dropbox or use a thumb drive.

Download PuTTY Key Generator from in the list it will say PuTTYgen.

Now install it, you can accept all the defaults.

Launch it once it’s installed.

putty import putty_save_private_key

Choose Conversions -> Import.

Select your private key, the filename should be something like id_dsa.

You’ll be prompted to enter your passphrase for the key. Once entered it will load it in to the screen.


Now under “Actions” click “Save private key”. I named my id_dsa.ppk.

You should be all set now!

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