SSH, or Secure Shell, is a network protocol employed to connect to a server and perform different tasks through a command line. The protocol is popular with many expert users, since the information transmitted over it is encrypted, so it cannot be intercepted on the way by a 3rd party. SSH access may be used for a variety of things based on the type of website hosting account. With a shared hosting account, for instance, SSH is one of the ways to import/export a database or to upload a file in case the web server allows it. When you have a virtual or a dedicated server, SSH could be used for just about everything - you may install software or restart specific services like the web server or the database server which run on the machine. SSH is used mostly with UNIX-like Operating Systems, but there are clients which permit you to employ the protocol if your computer system is using a different OS too. The connection is made on TCP port 22 by default and the remote server always listens for incoming connections on that port even though a number of providers change it for security reasons.