Deploy a New Server with an SSH Key

Updated on October 6, 2020
Deploy a New Server with an SSH Key header image

Use this Quickstart Guide to learn how to add SSH Keys to your account in the Customer Portal, and use those keys for new server deployments.


To follow this guide, you must have an SSH key in OpenSSH format. See our guide to create an SSH key.

Add an SSH key to your Vultr Account

  1. Log into the Customer Portal.

  2. Click your name in the upper-right, then select SSH Keys from the dropdown menu.

  3. Click the blue "plus sign" button to add a key.

  4. Enter a descriptive name for the key.

  5. Paste your public key into the SSH Key field.

    Add SSH Key

  6. Click Add SSH Key.

Your key is now available when deploying a new server.

Deploying SSH Keys to New Server Instances

You may select one or multiple SSH keys when deploying a new instance.

Deploy SSH Key


  • Remember to select the key before the initial deployment. You cannot manage keys on previously deployed servers from the control panel.
  • The key is copied to the instance during deployment. Removing or changing your SSH key in the Customer Portal does not affect your previously deployed servers. If you need to manage keys on a running server, see our guide to add and delete your key manually.
  • You may deploy SSH keys to new Linux and BSD server instances only. Deploying SSH keys is not supported for Windows servers, custom ISOs, or snapshot restores.
  • The SSH Key will be deployed for the root user. See our guide to use SSH keys for a non-root user.

Manage SSH Keys via API

The Vultr API offers several endpoints to manage SSH keys.

  • Create a new SSH key for use with future instances. This does not update any running instances.
  • List all SSH keys in your account.
  • Get information about an SSH key.
  • Update an SSH key.
  • Delete an SSH key.

More Information

For more information about managing SSH keys, see our other guides: