[SOLVED] Too many authentication failures using Transmit and SFTP

July 31, 2012

Yesterday and today, I was trying to connect to a new clients server using SFTP with my mac FTP software Transmit on my mac book pro which is running Mountain Lion.

I opened Transmit, entered my new sftp details given to me by the server manager, and received the error below, which I have never ever seen before.

So I checked with the clients server manager and he confirmed he was able to connect from his pc to the server with my credentials no problems. So of course I checked, double checked to make sure I was entering the correct login details and confirmed that my ip was not blocked or anything like that.

Then I tried the same login details on a windows machine on a different network and my other mac. They were connecting just fine so in the end I figured that it must be something on my own mac that causing the connection problem.

So, then I opened up “console” (Applications > Utilities) to see what it was logging and when I was trying to connect with sftp through transmit, console logging was giving me the error “Received disconnect from <remote_server> 2: Too many authentication failures for <user_name>.

This message kind of makes it looks like its the server is kicking me out. But its not the remote server, in the end I have figured out that its in fact the ssh identities on my mac.

The fastest remedy for this was to simply flush all the ssh identities on my mac using the command below in terminal (Applications > Utilities)

ssh-add -D

After doing that, I was then able to connect Transmit using sftp (without key authentication).

So thanks to the following pages for helping me identify the issue and a remedy.

Fixing the Heroku “Too many authentication failures for git” problem
SSH returns “too many authentication failures” error – HostGator