Telnet vs SSH: Difference and Comparison

If you have used a Linux Distro for quite some time and are no longer a novelist in Linux, you must fulfil the terms SSH and telnet.

Telnet and SSH are client-server applications for general purposes and use the remote terminal service, which enables users to communicate in one location, like a user keyboard and a monitor connected directly to a distant computer, with a remote time-sharing device in another site.

For connection to the computer remotely, provide us with different applications, including Telnet and SSH as primary application servers and virtual terminal service, which enables a user to communicate with a remote time-sharing device in another location as if the user’s keyboard and monitor were directly linked to the remote machine.

Key Takeaways

  1. Telnet is a protocol that allows remote access to a computer or server, while SSH is a more secure protocol that encrypts the transmitted data.
  2. Telnet sends data in plain text, while SSH encrypts the data using public-key cryptography.
  3. Telnet is less secure and more vulnerable to hacking or eavesdropping, while SSH provides a secure connection and is recommended for remote access to sensitive information.

Telnet vs SSH

A server can be accessed remotely using a protocol called telnet. A less secure connection is provided by telnet. Telnet uses port 23 for data transfer. SSH is a type of protocol using which data can be transferred securely. SSH encrypts data before transmission. SSH is more suitable for transferring personal or confidential information.

Telnet vs SSH

Telnet is a client-server program enabling the user to retrieve any application program remotely. Telnet’s purpose is to provide the customer with remote computer resources and transmit the result to the local computer.

TELNET is the Terminal network’s acronym. Telnet supports remote device connection in such a way that the local terminal looks like a remote terminal.

SSH is a network protocol that replaces the insecure remote login and the execution of commands, such as telnet. It encrypts traffic and prevents traffic, sniffing, and login stealing in both directions.

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Even SSH has various additional functions such as compression, public key authentication, server authentication, port transmission, X11 transmission, and file transfer.

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonTelnetSSH
DefinitionTelnets a network protocol best used by UNIX, mostly designed for local area networking and joint telecommunication and network short-circuit.SSH or Secure Shell is a network-based system that connects to another node, runs commands on remote computers and transfers data between machines.
Format of dataIn plain text, Telnet transfers the files.The encrypted format is used for sending data, which uses a safe channel as well.
AuthenticateUser authentication has no rights.Uses authentication public-key encryption.
Network AdaptabilityIt is advisable to use private networks.Adapted to public networks.
SensitivitySafety attacks are vulnerable.SSH overcame a large number of telnet security problems.
SurgeryPort 23 is used by Telnet and was developed for local area networks specifically.SSH runs by default on port 22 but can be modified quickly.
SecurityIn comparison with SSH, Telnet is less shielded.SSH since it exchanges information in encrypted form, is a very secure protocol.

What is Telnet?

Telnet is the shared telecommunications because of network abbreviation, and it is a UNIX platform networking protocol. Port 23 is used by Telnet and was developed for local area networks specifically.

Telnet was first introduced in 1969 and was developed as a remote control to operate mainframe computing from distant terminals because of the initial Internet.

Telnet allowed students and teachers to log in from either terminal at the mainframe University during the initial days of large mainframe computers. Per semester, this remote login saved researchers time to walk.

In 1969, Telnet became a breakthrough and, as opposed to modern network technology, helped pave the way for the World Wide Web.

Even if the technology from Telnet is really ancient, today, purists do use it. Telnet is not a secure networking protocol since it does not use an authentication scheme and converts the network/internet data, including passwords, into plain text.

Telnet is a client-server program that allows the user to get any application program remotely.


What is SSH?

Secure or SSH Shell is now just an essential protocol in relation to network and server Internet connections.

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In order to communicate through a network to another computer, remotely monitor a system and migrate data from one machine to another, SSH Communications Security Ltd was designed by SSH.

It provides strong authentication and safe networking across unspecified networks.

SSH runs on port 22 by default but can be easily changed. It exchanges and transfers encrypted information, ensuring anonymity and confidentiality on an unsecured network, and is a highly secure protocol.

It is extremely difficult to decode and read the details while communication data are encrypted with SSH such that our keys are protected throughout a public network.

SSH uses a common key to authenticate users visiting a device, and it is a highly secure process. SSH is primarily used in all popular operating systems in the Unit, Solaris, Red Hat Linux, CentOS, and Ubuntu.

SSH advocates a network against attacks such as IP spoofing, IP transmission and Spoofing. SSH is used where information and data need to be protected urgently.


Main Differences Between Telnet and SSH

  1. Telnet does not provide authentication, whereas SSH authenticates the recipient.
  2. A private network functions with Telnet, whereas SSH operates on a shared network.
  3. Telnet interacts via TCP/IP through port number 23, whereas SSH uses port number 22 for communications.
  4. In Telnet, the data is transmitted in plain text, and it is vulnerable to attacks by security, whereas SSH uses data transmission coding, and there is unlikely to be a security violation.
  5. Telnet is a network protocol better suited for UNIX and is specifically designed for local area networks, while SSH or Secure Shell is a program for logging into another computer via a network, carrying commands on a remote machine, and exchanging data between devices. Telnet is a network abbreviation.

Last Updated : 24 June, 2023

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24 thoughts on “Telnet vs SSH: Difference and Comparison”

  1. Telnet and SSH are network protocols that have distinct differences in terms of security and data transmission. Telnet is less secure and transfers data in plain text, while SSH uses encrypted formats, making it a more secure option.

  2. The comparison of Telnet and SSH emphasizes the significance of encryption for secure data transmission in network communications. While Telnet has its historical relevance, SSH’s encryption and secure protocols make it the more trustworthy option for modern network security.

    • Absolutely, SSH’s encryption ensures that sensitive information is protected during network communications and data transfer.

  3. Telnet has a long history dating back to 1969 and was developed as an early remote control protocol for mainframe computing. However, its lack of authentication and encryption makes it less suitable for modern network security. SSH, with its encryption and secure authentication, is a more reliable option for remote communication and data transfer.

    • The historical significance of Telnet is important, but its security limitations make SSH the preferred choice for remote access and data transfer.

  4. Telnet and SSH serve the purpose of remote access to computers, but their security levels differ significantly. While Telnet is vulnerable due to its lack of encryption, SSH provides a secure and encrypted channel for data transmission.

  5. Both Telnet and SSH are essential for providing remote access to computers and servers. Telnet is less secure and sends data in plain text, making it more vulnerable to hacking. SSH, on the other hand, encrypts transmitted data, providing a secure connection.

  6. Telnet and SSH offer remote access to applications and services, but SSH’s emphasis on encryption and secure data transmission makes it a more suitable option for modern network security.

  7. The use of Telnet and SSH for remote access to computers and servers highlights the critical role of encryption in securing sensitive information. While Telnet has its historical significance, SSH’s emphasis on encryption and secure protocols makes it the preferred option for modern network security.

  8. The security distinction between Telnet and SSH demonstrates the importance of encrypted data transmission for network security. While Telnet has a historical legacy, SSH’s encryption and secure protocols make it the more reliable choice for modern network security.

  9. The security contrast between Telnet and SSH underscores the importance of encryption for secure data transmission over networks. While Telnet has historical significance, SSH’s encryption and secure protocols make it the more reliable option for modern network security.

  10. The comparison between Telnet and SSH highlights the importance of encryption for secure data transmission. While Telnet has its historical significance, SSH’s encryption and secure protocols make it the more reliable option for modern network security.


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