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How do I enable telnet for a Red Hat Linux system?

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closed as not a real question by John Gardeniers, Cian, Jeff Atwood Jan 24 '10 at 4:39

It's difficult to tell what is being asked here. This question is ambiguous, vague, incomplete, overly broad, or rhetorical and cannot be reasonably answered in its current form. For help clarifying this question so that it can be reopened, visit the help center.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

can you clarify? do you mean to telnet into a red hat system or to enable telnet on a red hat system so you can then takes steps to telnet into it? – Patrick R Jan 24 '10 at 2:53
Are you sure you want Telnet? Telnet is a insecure protocol, whereas something like SSH works a lot better and is more secure. – p858snake Jan 24 '10 at 2:54
What, other than it being a bad idea, makes this "not a real question" and thus deserving of being closed? – Jeff Snider Jan 24 '10 at 4:54

Unless there is a specific reason you need telnet, I would recommend using SSH over telnet. Everything is transmitted unencrypted via telnet, so it is possible to sniff that traffic and pull out passwords.

With that said, to enable it, you first need the telnet server installed

sudo yum -y install telnet-server

This should pick up the xinetd package which is also required.

By default, even after you install the package it will be disabled. You need to edit /etc/xinetd.d/telnet and change the line that says disable=yes to disable=no

Then you will need to start xinetd with

sudo /sbin/service xinetd start

If you have a firewall enabled, you will need to allow traffic on port 23.

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Redhat has telnet disabled by default for a good reason - it's a crappy clear-text protocol left over from the 1980s. It would be best if you left it disabled.

It will however have an SSH server started, which is the modern equivalent of telnet. You'll likely be able log into it that way - use PuTTY on Windows, or ssh client on any other system.

If you're after something more, and actually require a telnet server, please explain a bit more.

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The telnet client is still a great utility for testing whether certain ports are reachable on a given machine. Just don't use the server. – dstibbe Nov 20 '13 at 8:41