On-demand SSH certificates with Indent + Smallstep

Jenessa Petersen

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​​TLDR; Smallstep SSH Professional now works with Indent for on-demand SSH certificates.

Here’s something you may not know - Smallstep started with a mission to solve authorization. We wanted to write an entire policy language to fully secure distributed systems and go from there.

So we created step - which you will notice, is the base of everything here at Smallstep. But we couldn’t solve authorization because we didn’t have a reliable, automated, secure way to authenticate.

You can’t have zero trust without authentication.

Back down the bunny hole went our fearless Smallsteppers and they came out with our first ever product - Smallstep SSH. Today it’s a fully robust SSH product that makes you SSH the right way - with SSH certificates. Smallstep SSH Professional integrates with your Identity Provider (IdP) to get you started quickly with SSH certificates.

Authorization has never been far from our hearts and minds. When our friends over at Indent told us that they wanted to make a Smallstep SSH Professional integration - we of course said a resounding “YES!”

And that brings us to today -

📢 Announcing Indent for Smallstep: On-Demand SSH Certificates 📢

By adding Indent’s on-demand access control to Smallstep, approvers can review requests and initiate the certificate generation process right from Slack. Users are able to get access with just /access in Slack and are kept in the loop about the status of their request. When their access expires, it’s super simple to request another certificate. They can just click the “renew access” button in the expired access Slack notification.

With Smallstep and Indent you can:

  • Use SSH certificates instead of public keys without mapping users to hosts in an identity provider
  • Manage time-bound SSH access right from Slack and
  • Get your on-call team access without the wait with auto approvals

More, including an awesome demo, on Indent’s blog announcement.

Here’s to bringing authentication and authorization to the masses, easily. 🥂

  • We will show you just how easy it is to use on March 22 - register here! -

About the author: Jenessa LinkedIn, Twitter believes that encryption affects everyone in the world and every part of our daily lives from the water we drink to the transportation we rely on and the food we eat. She seeks to break down the barriers to secure infrastructure by working on reliable, easy-to-use tools - first at CoreOS and Red Hat, then at Let’s Encrypt, and now at Smallstep.