OpenSSH

How do I use the ssh-agent command for non-interactive authentication on Linux and Unix-like systems such as macOS or FreeBSD desktop? My private key is protected with a passphrase or password. So I need have to enter the passphrase to use the ssh private key for authentication multiple times. How can I tell ssh ask the passphrase one time only?
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I am a new Ubuntu 18.04 LTS user and I would like to setup ssh public key authentication. How do I set up ssh keys based authentication on Ubuntu Linux 18.04 LTS server? How do I set up SSH keys on an Ubuntu Linux 18.04 LTS server? In Ubuntu 18.04 LTS, how do I set up public key authentication?
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I need to copy all the *.c files from local laptop named hostA to hostB including all directories. I am using the following scp command but do not know how to exclude specific files (such as *.out):
$ scp -r ~/projects/ user@hostB:/home/delta/projects/
How do I tell scp command to exclude particular file or directory at the Linux/Unix command line?
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