Unable to SSH into server - Network Error: Connection refused


Well-Known Member
Jul 26, 2007
After I used putty and a chown command for a directory above the root of a web account - something that shouldn't affect anything on the server - I find myself unable to SSH into the server at all, whether using putty or even using cpanel itself. I can't even use the java based SSH to login, constantly getting a "connection refused" error. I checked the firewall report which emails me and there is no indication it has prevented my IP.

One note - the folder I chowned happens to be named var and it's the only thing I can think of that may have caused the problem, an unintended adverse effect.

WinSCP also fails to connect for the same reason but Filezilla for FTP does work. Same settings, same port. I cannot explain this.

I tried to restart the SSH server but that doesn't do anything.

Network Error: Connection refused


CPANEL's SSH access: Could not establish a connection to the host: Connection refused.


CPANEL's Shell Login: Sorry could not connect. Java.net connectexception Connection Refused
Last edited:


Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2006
Hello there,

If you changed the permissions of the /var folder, I am going to guess that because these services are refusing connection due to the fact that they all use this folder for logging (/var/log), and they are now locked up, because they do not have permission to access the folders they need. You may need to contact your host and have them go in and check things out for you.