How to Create and Customize Your SSH Login Welcome Message

The first thing you see when logging into a Linux server is the SSH login and welcome message. These welcome messages can be customized to become useful reminders of software versions, system stats, and other relevant information. Here’s how you can create your own customized welcome SSH login message.

Creating a welcome SSH message

In order to create an SSH welcoming banner you are required to edit a file name motd:

/etc/motd

Very often this file is associated with the Linux build number, including a warranty message (similar to the one you see for Ubuntu). Here’s an excellent example how a customized welcome SSH login message should look like:

“This computer system is for authorized users only. All activity is logged and regularly checked by systems personal. Individuals using this system without authority or in excess of their authority are subject to having all their services revoked. Any illegal services run by the user or attempts to take down this server or its services will be reported to local law enforcement, and said a user would be punished to the full extent of the law. Anyone using this system consents to these terms.”

Now, you are free to logout from the terminal. Then, login again in order to check if you new welcome message works.

Customizing a welcome SSH login message with the help of ASCII

With ASCII art, you can make sure that your welcome banner looks more alive and attractive. Feel free to explore online options for some interesting ASCII banners.

All you have to do is type your data center and server names into the generator. You are also free to include the name of your company in the appropriate text field. The next thing to do is check the right font choice: “_all fonts with your text_”. Choose the one you like and copy/paste into your file: /etc/motd.

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