SSH, or Secure Shell, is a network protocol that is used to connect to a server and conduct different tasks using a command line. The protocol is popular with many knowledgeable users, since the information transmitted over it is encrypted, so it cannot be intercepted on the way by a 3rd party. SSH access can be employed for a variety of things based on the type of website hosting account. With a shared hosting account, for example, SSH is one of several ways to import/export a database or to upload a file when the website hosting server permits it. If you have a virtual or a dedicated server, SSH could be used for practically anything - you may install software or restart particular services such as the web server or the database server which run on the machine. SSH is employed largely with UNIX-like Operating Systems, but there are clients that permit you to use the protocol if your laptop or computer is running a different Operating System too. The connection is established on TCP port 22 by default and the remote server always listens for incoming connections on that port although a lot of service providers change it for security reasons.