Mac OS X gets SecureCRT!

I haven’t been a Mac user for very long, but I have been a SecureCRT user for many years. For those who may not know, SecureCRT is a terminal emulator program that provides client access to telnet, ssh, serial sessions and more (I presume more, I really only use it for the aforementioned reasons). During my brief, but so far highly satisfying time as a Mac user, I have somewhat missed the use of SecureCRT, as it has only been available for Windows. In order to access telnet, ssh or serial sessions, I’ve learned to use Terminal.app. Terminal is nice because of it’s tabbing ability (clearly blows away Windows’ command prompt), and it might even be nicer if I could learn how to automate some of my uses with it.

But, as this post’s title implies, SecureCRT is now available (in beta form) for Mac OS X! Let me show you how I’ve been using it.

If you’ve not entered a license key (like me), when you fire it up, you’ll get a nag screen letting you know how much longer you’ve got left to evaluate it. As you can see, my time is quickly running out, as I’ve only got 17 days remaining!



By default, the connection dialog screen is presented to you on start up. I like to group and save my different connections, so this is an acceptable way to start the program for me. From this screen, you can right click on set up devices and get a useful context menu. When I need to create a group that contains devices with common attributes, once the first device is created I can copy it from this context menu, paste several times and edit each one from the context menu.

As you can see, it provides a rename function from this context menu. Once I’ve renamed a device, I will choose properties.

There are lots of options, but my favorite is the Logon Actions automation. Shown below, this one connects to an old Cisco 2511 that’s serving up console connections to a rack of other Cisco routers and switches. With this automation, I don’t need to type passwords or send the enable command to get into exec mode. (And yes, I know, I could create a specific user on the device itself and assign the correct privilege!)

Another thing I like from this screen is the ability to select lots of devices and connect to them at once.

Connected!

Unfortunately, I’m not sure I can justify the $99 price tag. So in 17 more days, you might find me back using the Terminal app!

If anyone has any pointers as to how I could so something similar with Terminal.app and scripting, I’m all ears!

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