Ubuntu – SSH to Server, Execute Command, and Maintain Connection


I want to write a script that opens a terminal with different tabs, logon to a server using ssh in each tab and execute a command in each tab. For example: htop.

The below script opens a terminal with 4 tabs all logged in on the server. But if I try to add the htop command in the cmd= line it does not work anymore…


cmd="bash -c 'ssh user@host';bash"

for i in 1 2 3 4; do
      foo+=($tab -e "$cmd")         

gnome-terminal "${foo[@]}"

exit 0

I have tried this…

cmd="bash -c 'ssh user@host htop';bash"

…because the ssh --help says that the syntax for ssh is:

usage: ssh [user@]hostname [command]

Best Answer

In its simplest form:

ssh -t user@host "command; bash"

-t is the critical part here. It forces the host to allocate a virtual terminal to the process, which allows it to stay open.

If you just want to run htop on a load of servers, you can omit the bash at the end but that does mean if you quit htop, you'll drop back to a local terminal.