How to setup your free UNIX shell account on SDF

Setting up an account at SDF is quick and easy, but to do so you must connect via an ssh (Secure Shell) or telnet client to and login as the new user. You will be asked a few questions including that you agree to abide by our Acceptable Use Policy.

  • MacOS X users, click here: ssh://
  • Microsoft Windows users may use our Java SSH client:
  • Linux/UNIX users can type ssh at their shell prompts.
  • For Microsoft Windows users we highly recommend the free SSH client putty.

Membership Levels

1. Users: Basic Membership Level

USERS (free)

  • 200MB disk quota / 5,000 files divided into 4 areas
  • mutt, pop3, imap, icq, twitter, bsflite (aim), local irc
  • games, mud, lynx, gopher, TOPS-20
  • webmail interface
  • traceroute, ping, whois, dig and more

**after account validation**

  • inbound ssh, ftp and sftp connections
  • elm, pine, alpine, mailx and rmail
  • bash, ksh, tcsh, rc and zsh
  • ed, ex, vi, pico, nano and emacs
  • shell, awk and sed based CGI
  • free IRC access on weekends
  • USENET access (read/post), ClariNET access
  • hundreds of shell/network utilities


Allows staff, volunteer or adjunct at an accredited college or K-12 to self-manage a virtual UNIX classroom. A prospective instructor should provide SDF with details regarding their class (such as a syllabus or lesson plan). Students create their own accounts and are then validated by the instructor. The ATutor CMS is also available for classes. Further details are available in the FAQ.

STUDENT (free)

Allows an enrolled student at an accredited college or K-12 school to be validated by a qualifying 'INSTRUCTOR'. The account provides a student with 'USERS' benefits, as well as development tools of the 'ARPA' membership. The student can retain this access by joining the 'ARPA' membership or will be made 'USERS' after the semester.

2. Arpa: Patron Lifetime Membership Level

ARPA ($36 one-time)

  • 600MB disk quota / 15,000 files divided into 4 areas
  • lifetime membership for only $36
  • all features of the 'users' account
  • voting rights on system features and policies
  • outbound telnet, ssh, sftp, ftp, ytalk, irc, snarf, wget
  • gcc, elisp, perl, php, python, ruby
  • Twitter (ttytter), SDF VoIP, Voicemail and conferencing
  • UUCP mail and USENET / ClariNET newsfeed via dialup or TCP
  • 50 domains to choose from for your URL
  • full CGI access for php, perl, python, ruby

3. MetaARPA: Sustaining Membership Level

MetaARPA ($36 annual)

  • 1000MB disk quota / 60,000 files divided into 4 areas
  • ARPA membership is required (waiver)
  • SSL encryption on personal web site
  • cron jobs managed via 'mkcron', screen, tmux
  • Proxying via bouncers like irssi, psybnc
  • ssh tunnel/forwarding with alt port
  • SMTP AUTH access for remote outgoing mail
  • access to svn, git, rsync, lisp and java
  • may write tutorials and system software
  • dynamic domain name service (
  • MOTD source code contrib access

Where to send donations & membership dues

Postal Address

SDFeu Public Access UNIX System
Post Office Box 17355
Seattle, WA 98127
United States


Paypal can be used for making donations and paying dues with or without a Paypal account:

  • Click the Make a Donation button below
  • Fill in what the donation with your user id in the Description field
  • Fill in the total amount of the donation
  • Either login to your Paypal acct or click Don't have.. to use a credit card

Support SDFeu through recurring donations and memberships

The subscription buttons below are for use by existing ARPA members
of the SDFeu Public Access UNIX System. If you do not have an existing
membership or account visit to set up a new account.

All are welcome and thank you for your kind support.

Join or Renew MetaARPA membership for $36 a year

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