I’ve been searching for an alternative for plain PuTTY for a while now.
My requirements are:
- free, preferably open source
- in active development
- Window transparency
I’ve looked at the following:
- PuTTY based:
- MTPuTTY, KiTTY, PuTTYTray (https://puttytray.goeswhere.com) etc
- mRemoteNG, PuTTYCM, PuTTYTabManager, PuTTYMan, SuperPuTTY, …
- Cygwin + OpenSSH (no GUI)
- SecureCRT (not free)
- ConEmu (https://conemu.github.io) + PuTTY
- XShell (https://www.netsarang.com/products/xsh_overview.html)
However none of them work flawlessly (I probably have used ConEmu and PuTTY the longest).
Currently I’m using XShell instead which is it’s own thing instead of being PuTTY based.
I also still use PuTTYTray which is one of the more useful PuTTY derivatives (eg transparency, tray, cygterm and can save sessions to file).
Update: I’ve forked over the cheese and completely switched to XShell. I also use (the free version of) Xftp more and more.
These are supposed to be good alternatives too and I might look at them in the future:
Jan 2017: Just noticed Termius (previously Serverauditor) which I use on iOS – to my full satisfaction – will be getting a Windows version.
Dec 2018: There’s also Hyper, an Electron and node.js based alternative: https://hyper.is. It supports tabs and can be extended with plugins. Imo it’s a bit resource heavy and can get sluggish with many tabs and plugins loaded, but not bad.. not bad.
Jun 2019: Been using the quite nice MobaXterm at work the past few months. It’s basically a tabbed GUI around PuTTY with Cygwin and X11 support etc. I use it with WSL for local terminals and that’s been working well for me.
Aug 2019: Microsoft finally decided to offer the competent Windows Terminal. Tabs, colors, theming, supports both Cmd and PS… and ssh works fine. Very useful. This is what I now use as Windows Console and for WSL. Also still using XShell 6.