Telnet is very popular networking protocol which is used to carry information amongst computers in network. It was designed and launched in the year of 1969 and since then it has been a great use in computer networking and most network equipped operating system support Telnet over TCP/IP protocol. It gives to the command line access to another computer and you can perform some task manually on other computer. It allows you to establish a text-based communication with any other computer over a network using a virtual terminal connection. You may consider Telnet a bit outdated or obsolete but it is still used in various places for data transmission and information sharing. Today, almost every operating system supports Telnet and Linux is no exception for that. Generally Linux comes with the Telnet client software in-built but you need to install and configure the Telnet server on a Linux machine to develop the Terminal communication between client and server machines. The main reason for Telnet’s less popularity is it low security feature, Telnet command and information are not encrypted and that is why Telnet has been replaced by a new protocol called SSH.

Here are some of the guidelines to install Telnet on Linux and the configuration of Telnet server:

Install Telnet:

The installation process can differ from different Linux distributors; below mentioned installation process is specific to Fedora and Redhat Linux:


Open the “system settings” and select “Add/Remove Applications” under the Application menu. It will show you the list of the options and select “Legacy Network Server” from the list.


Now select the correct checkbox in the program and click on “Details” under the “Telnet-Server” option and click “Install this Software” to initiate the installation process.

Configure Telnet:


Once the Telnet is installed on your Linux machine; launch the terminal window which is called ‘Terminal’ ‘Xterm’ or ‘Konsole’ in different Linux distributors.


Use the command “vi /etc/xinetd.d/telnet” which will help you to launch the telnet configuration file. This step is particular if you are trying to install it on Fedora machine. Now the commandline “disable = no” line into “disable = yes”. This is step will not be useful for Ubuntu and Mint users, they might not even find these option in the console.


Now use command “/etc/init.d/inetd restart” to restart the Telnet service on Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Debian machines and the same settings can be configured using “/etc/init.d/xinetd restart” command on Fedora based Linux machine.  These settings depends of different distributor, but it determines the same purpose and you shuld use these commands very carefully.

These basic steps will help you to configure Telnet on your Linux machine. All you need to do is to use the correct commands depends on the distributor of your Linux application.