VMware vCenter: SCP Backup does not work

Recently we changed the backup Server for our vCenter. The backup job over SCP worked for years on the old Server, but on the new one I was not able to configure the backup-schedule. I got always a timeout on the vCenter Server Appliance Management Web-GUI and I had to restart it with:

service-control --restart applmgmt

To get it working again without rebooting the whole vCenter Appliance.

After a few hours of debugging, I saw a process named sshpass which was hanging.
sshpass tries to find “Password:” in the prompt and sends then the password.

Now the problem was, the old Server had a prompt like:


And the new one had:

Password for username@servername:

So sshpass was not able to find “Password:” and timed out.

As both our servers are BSD, I had to fix the sshd config on the new Server for PAM in /etc/pam.d/sshd with adding of “authtok_prompt=Password:” and then restart sshd.

#auth required pam_unix.so no_warn try_first_pass
auth required pam_unix.so no_warn try_first_pass authtok_prompt=Password:

With this setting, the prompt changes from “Password for ….” to “Password:”.
And the backup-schedule works again 🙂

Leave a Reply