Trouble with ssh-agent (maybe opening socket?)

Christian Anton
Tue May 5 08:03:00 GMT 2009

Hi cygwin community!

I use cygwin for a long time on my corporate Windows XP client to make
this operation system "usable". In fact i am using the cygwin shell as
ssh/scp client in most cases because it is the most familiar way for me to
work with ssh connections as i come from the unix/linux world.

Since a few days i have a strange problem with ssh-agent whithout having
changed anything in my cygwin configuration. I have not full control over
my windows client because as it is a corporate client the patches and
system changes are globally deployed via netinstaller-script.

in a script which i source in .bashrc if no ssh-agent is running i start a
new one with ssh-agent -s command. This works, in task manager
"ssh-agent.exe" appears.

Next step in the script is to add identities to ssh-agent using the
command ssh-add which results in a hanging ssh-add command and
ssh-agent.exe consuming 50% of CPU (which seems to mean that it totally
consumes one of the two cores).

Now i have absolutely no idea what the problem is, i only see that ssh-agent 
starts to get crazy eating all cpu time it can get when ssh-add is trying to
access its socket.

Do you have any idea how to debug this problem? It is really annoying to
work with ssh and entering the private key's password on every new

Thanks a lot in advance


Here is the script i use to start ssh-agent (~/.ssh/

------------ snip --------------

cat ${SSH_ENV}

function start_agent {
        echo "Initialising new Secure Shell agent..."
        ssh-agent -s | head -2 > ${SSH_ENV}
        chmod 600 ${SSH_ENV}
        . ${SSH_ENV} > /dev/null

# Source SSH settings, if applicable
if [ -f "${SSH_ENV}" ]; then
       . ${SSH_ENV} > /dev/null
       kill -0 ${SSH_AGENT_PID} 2>/dev/null || {

------------ snap --------------

In my .bashrc i have the following:

source ~/.ssh/environment.`hostname`

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