Let's suppose I have a SSH key, but I've deleted the public key part. I have the private key part. Is there some way I can regenerate the public key part?

2 Answers 2


Use the -y option to ssh-keygen:

ssh-keygen -f ~/.ssh/id_rsa -y > ~/.ssh/id_rsa.pub

From the 'man ssh-keygen'

 -y      This option will read a private OpenSSH format file and print an
         OpenSSH public key to stdout.

Specify the private key with the -f option, yours might be dsa instead of rsa. The name of your private key probably contains which you used. The newly generated public key should be the same as the one you generated before.

  • 8
    Why the "-t dsa"? Mayge the OP's key is rsa? I'd get rid of -t and instead use a -f.
    – innaM
    Aug 10, 2009 at 14:44
  • 1
    Good point, updated accordingly Aug 10, 2009 at 14:52
  • yeah mine originally was RSA. Aug 10, 2009 at 15:19
  • 1
    On Mac OSX 10.9.3 Mavericks I'm getting 'load failed' after running the command. How do I solve this?
    – Hyperfocus
    Jun 8, 2014 at 18:02
  • 1
    I think you might take this one step further with the -N parameter in case the private key is password protected: ssh-keygen -f ~/.ssh/id_rsa -y -N "$PASSWORD" > ~/.ssh/id_rsa.pub
    – ken
    Oct 7, 2014 at 12:28

Solution is specifically for users using Windows

Tool Used:

  • Puttygen (PuTTY Key Generator)
  • WinSCP

Steps to perform:

  1. Open PuTTY Key Generator.
  2. Load your private key (*.ppk file).
  3. Copy your public key data from the "Public key for pasting into OpenSSH authorized_keys file" section of the PuTTY Key Generator and paste the key data to the "authorized_keys" file (using notepad) if you want to use it.

Snapshot showing portions of Puttygen to focus:

Snapshot showing portions of Puttygen to focus

  • Further reading: askubuntu.com/questions/53553/… Nov 21, 2015 at 10:07
  • Puttygen can also 'import' OpenSSH (really OpenSSL-legacy) and SSHCOM format privatekeys. And although originated on Windows, it has also been ported to Unix, and the Unix version of puttygen is a commandline (not GUI) program; see e.g. linux.die.net/man/1/puttygen Sep 6, 2018 at 6:28
  • You cab get PuTTY and PuTTY tools on Linux too.
    – mckenzm
    Nov 14, 2023 at 23:32

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