ssh_exchange_identification: Connection closed by remote host

Tim Rice tim at
Wed Sep 2 14:36:09 EST 2009

On Tue, 1 Sep 2009, petesea at wrote:

> I'm randomly getting the following error on a server from various remote
> hosts:
>   ssh_exchange_identification: Connection closed by remote host
> The server is running OpenSSH 4.5p1 w/GSSAPI Key Exchange patch.  The hosts
> connecting to it should all be using OpenSSH 5.0p1 w/GSSAPI Key Exchange patch
> and using gssapi-keyex authentication.
> Normally, when I've seen this error, it means access to the SSH port is
> blocked by TCP wrappers or something like that, but I'm sure that's not the
> case here since /etc/hosts.allow and /etc/hosts.deny haven't changed for quite
> some time.  Also, the failures are random from many different remote hosts and
> I can try a connection from a host right after it's failed and it will work.

I've seen this with DNS failures when my hosts.allow entry is a domain
rather than an IP.

> Under what other conditions might I get this error and how can I track down
> what's causing it?

Tim Rice				Multitalents	(707) 887-1469
tim at

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