RHEL 7 Two-Factor SSH Via Google Authenticator


In this post,  I am going to walk you through the process of installing and configuring two- factor SSH authentication via Google Authenticator. My base system is running a fresh install of RHEL 7.2

Installation Steps

The first step on my system was to install autoreconf, automake, and libtool. These packages are required by the bootstrap.sh script that we will need to in a couple more steps.

# yum -y install autoconf automake libtool

Now, we are going to install Git.

#yum -y install git

One more dependency to knock out. Install pam-devel as shown below.

# yum -y install pam-devel

Next, we clone the google-authenticator Git repo. In this example, I am cloning to /root

# git clone https://github.com/google/google-authenticator.git
Cloning into ‘google-authenticator’…
remote: Counting objects: 1435, done.
remote: Total 1435 (delta 0), reused 0 (delta 0), pack-reused 1435
Receiving objects: 100% (1435/1435), 2.32 MiB | 0 bytes/s, done.
Resolving deltas: 100% (758/758), done.

Now change directory as shown below and run bootstrap.sh.

# cd /root/google-authenticator/libpam

# ./bootstrap.sh

Now run the following commands to finalize the module installs.

# ./configure


#make install

Assuming that you do not run into any errors, the following modules will be installed.

  • /usr/local/lib/security/pam_google_authenticator.so
  • /usr/local/lib/security/pam_google_authenticator.la

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Insync: The Powerful Google Drive Client For Linux


Insync is a very powerful and full featured Google Drive client for Windows, Mac, and Linux. I ran across Insync when I was looking for a Google Drive client for Linux after I kicked Dropbox to the curb and switching over to Google Drive for all my cloud storage needs.

In all honesty, if it wasn’t for the Insync client I do not think that I would have made the switch at all, as Google does not even offer a basic GUI client for Linux. Really Google?

PSA: The integration that Google Drive provides into Google Photos, Google Music, Google Docs, and Gmail is well worth the switch from Dropbox in my opinion, and 1TB for only 9 bucks a month is hard to beat (100GB is only $1.99 a month). Just having a Gmail account gives you access to 15GB of free space… so there is no reason not to give it a try.

Ok now back to the topic at hand.

Note that a personal license of the Insync Google Drive client is not free, rather it costs $15. However you can download and try it risk free and without entering any credit card info. This one time fee for a personal license allows you to run and install Insync on multiple machines. Currently I have it installed on 4 separate Linux workstations/laptops. Its well worth cash.

Installing Insync is very easy and well documented so I am not going to go into that topic here. Rather lets talk about using Insync on Linux.

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