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Is it possible to SSH in to an RPi without a network connection?

I could imagine that you could do it using a LAN cable from the computer to the RPi or maybe using a USB cable.

I do actually have access to a network, however it doesn't allow incoming connections (even from local IP's) to any ports except 80 and 443 I would imagine.

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Just use a crossover cable, I guess that that is the solution you need ;). Connect all cables in the UTP cable like this: numitechsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/… then connect it with your PI and PC. Give them an IP, done ;). – Laurence Dec 7 '12 at 13:41
Regarding the connectiong process, there is a great article: Raspberry Pi Remote Connections – Without A Network!. It explains both Mac and Windows laptop configuaration. – Tomáš Zato Jun 19 '14 at 19:30
With modern Ethernet adapters, crossover is no longer needed. On a Windows box, just 'share' your WIFI network connection (open adapter properties, sharing) with your LAN. The RPI will get IP address from there. This will give you SSH access from the Windows box to your RPi but not external access. – fcm Mar 3 at 13:46
up vote 9 down vote accepted

If you're using Mac or Ubuntu/Debian there's an excellent explanation of doing exactly this called Raspberry Pi-ing, MacGyver Style.

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You can easily do it by connecting your pi to laptop via LAN cable. Please make sure that (at list while you are doing it first time) you have dhcp server working on your laptop and listening on LAN interface you are using to connect with pi. You need somehow assign address to raspberry.

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You don't need dhcp. – Laurence Dec 7 '12 at 13:44
If you have IP configured statically you don't have to. If not you need something to give you an IP address. – codewarrior Dec 7 '12 at 14:14

The problem is that you want to connect 2 devices of the same type. But it's still possible. You can use a Crossover cable for this (Method 1), or you could use a switch or hub to automatic make a crossover connection (Method 2). Or just use a simple router (Method 3).

Make a connection possible


Use a Crossover cable and connect your PC and PI:

An Ethernet crossover cable is a type of Ethernet cable used to connect computing devices together directly. Normal straight through or patch cables were used to connect from a host network interface controller (a computer or similar device) to a network switch, hub or router. A cable with connections that "cross over" was used to connect two devices of the same type: two hosts or two switches to each other. Owing to the inclusion of Auto-MDIX capability.

You need to connect the cables in the UTP cable like this: http://www.numitechsolutions.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/01/ethcablerj45cr.gif

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethernet_crossover_cable


You also can use a modern twisted pair Ethernet cable to connect to your PI. But you need a hub or switch for this:

connections can be made with a straight-through cable by means of an MDI-X port, also known as an "internal crossover" or "embedded crossover" connection. Hub and switch ports with such internal crossovers are usually labelled as such, with "uplink" or "X". For example, 3Com usually labels their ports 1X, 2X, and so on. In some cases a button is provided to allow a port to act as either a normal or an uplink port.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethernet_over_twisted_pair

More information:

Introduced in 1998, this made the distinction between uplink and normal ports and manual selector switches on older hubs and switches obsolete. If one or both of two connected devices has the automatic MDI/MDI-X configuration feature there is no need for crossover cables. Although Auto-MDIX was specified as an optional feature in the 1000BASE-T standard, in practice it is implemented widely on most interfaces. Besides the eventually agreed upon Automatic MDI/MDI-X, this feature may also be referred to by various vendor-specific terms including: Auto uplink and trade, Universal Cable Recognition and Auto Sensing.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethernet_crossover_cable

Method 3

Use a Router and connect both the PI and PC to the Router.

Make the connection

Give them both an IP in the same range, for example:

PC: Subnet:
PI: Subnet:

You can find here how to do this: http://www.cyberciti.biz/faq/linux-configure-a-static-ip-address-tutorial/

Enable SSH


Connect to the PI

On Windows use for example Putty.

Other method:

You also can look here: http://www.linux-usb.org/usbnet/

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How does method 2 work? Don't I need an active network connection on my computer? – Tyilo Dec 7 '12 at 14:01
I didn't finished that part jet. Give me 1 sec. – Laurence Dec 7 '12 at 14:07
I thought that the time when people have to use crossover cables gone forever :) Right now each and every new ethernet card is able to do crossing without the need of having crossover cable. – codewarrior Dec 8 '12 at 15:06
You never know what kind of PC he has, besides that, you always can try a UTP cable. – Laurence Dec 9 '12 at 16:12

For me, the most convenient way is to use USB Tethering on my Android device, connect it to the raspberry and then SSH from my phone to the raspberry.

see this post SSH from Android to rPI using USB?

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