Ubuntu Linux enable telnet service

by on July 29, 2006 · 20 comments· LAST UPDATED October 24, 2007


Q. How do I install and start telnet service / server under Ubuntu Linux?

A. Telnet is an insecure service. It is recommended that you use ssh service. However sometime telnet server or service is needed. Here are instructions to enable telnet:

Install telnetd server

$ sudo apt-get install telnetd
Restart inetd service:
$ sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart
You should now be able to telnet to the server from Windows or Linux desktop system to Ubentu Linux telnet server. Type the following command to connect to Telnet server:
$ telnet ubentu-linux-server-ip
$ telnet
$ telnet ubentu.mydomain.com

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{ 20 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Juan July 13, 2007 at 5:30 am

I tried this with ubuntu feisty fawn and it din’t work, it says

sudo: /etc/init.d/inetd: command not found

I have telnetd installed


2 zer0x October 2, 2007 at 1:49 pm

sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart



3 Raghav Chettri March 17, 2008 at 10:30 am

Running Telnet Server differs as per Linux OS you use.
If your Telnet server is not starting or you find “Connection refused…” try this for DEBIAN LINUX

sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart

Now try telnet..

SMile now :-)



4 Phil Karras April 14, 2008 at 3:49 pm

I’ve just installed Ubuntu Server 7.04 as LAMP & set the /etc/inetd.conf file as specified & when I try to restart the process:

sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart

I get “command not found” What have I done wrong?

Phil Karras


5 Dhaval January 25, 2015 at 5:11 am

Install by command sudo apt-get install openbsd-inetd and then put the command sudo telnet ip-address it will work


6 nick humphrey May 28, 2008 at 6:47 am

that means that openbsd-inetd isn’t installed =)


7 nick humphrey May 28, 2008 at 6:49 am

sudo apt-get install telnetd


8 dan October 2, 2008 at 2:51 am

I would like to run telnetd, but only
on one ethernet interface (so that telnet
will be refused on every other interface).

Is there any advice on how to do this,
or hidden pitfalls? (Apart of course
from running telnet at all. But there’s
one network which i think is safe.)


9 Nikolaj December 30, 2008 at 6:32 pm

hmm, I can’t connect to anything :O it’s just saying “Trying [ip_adress]…”
after that, I get a timeout :/


10 ahti kare October 23, 2009 at 8:53 pm

It works!


11 surely January 3, 2010 at 5:53 am

Thank YOU


12 Oliver Luvian March 29, 2010 at 7:01 pm

Gracias amigo, me saco de apuros

Thank You :-)


13 gfun June 8, 2010 at 7:30 am

Thank you man
you’re the best


14 Suspense September 8, 2010 at 6:43 am

It really works… thanks a lot dude.. I’m trying this from a month ago and it was not working.
It was really a great…. thanks once again.


15 Rajeev April 25, 2011 at 8:49 am

while trying this command : sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart
I got this message:
* Restarting internet superserver inetd
* Not starting internet superserver: no services enabled

However I have installed the telnetd successfully by using this command:
sudo apt-get install inetutils-telnetd


16 Parul September 23, 2011 at 4:52 am

I ran following two commands on my laptop running edubantu
$ sudo apt-get install telnetd
$ sudo /etc/init.d/openbsd-inetd restart

Then I went to my Windows XP laptop and tried to ping/telnet the edubantu IP address but it does not recognize that.
Am I missing some thing.



17 shrek November 18, 2011 at 6:38 pm

thanks . I was searching for it.


18 qubik February 13, 2012 at 9:13 pm

Muy util, me ha servido de maravilla. Muchas gracias! :)


19 Awais Shah October 11, 2012 at 7:35 am

Thnx buddy… it helped me… thats the nice one… :)


20 plaa plaa April 22, 2014 at 12:12 pm

worked also on ubuntu 14.04 lts server, thanks


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