DigitalOcean Droplets are Linux-based virtual machines (VMs) that run on top of virtualized hardware. Each Droplet you create is a new server you can use, either standalone or as part of a larger, cloud-based infrastructure.
Most users manage their DigitalOcean Droplets using SSH, PuTTY, or a control panel they’ve installed themselves. However, changes to your network or service configuration files could leave you unable to log in remotely using these methods.
The Recovery Console provides out-of-band access and is available regardless of your network settings. It emulates the access you would have if you were sitting down with a keyboard and monitor attached to the actual server. You can use this feature to log in and revert bad settings to regain normal access.
The Droplet Console is meant as a lightweight, browser-based way to manage a Droplet. It connects to Droplets using the network, like other SSH-based clients, and has features similar to local terminals.
The Recovery Console (previously referred to as the Droplet Console) is an older, browser-based connection option based on VNC. Using it is like plugging a keyboard and monitor directly into the Droplet.
The Recovery Console is available even if a Droplet has lost network access or the
sshd process has failed, but its functionality is limited compared to the Droplet Console. For example, it requires password authentication on the Droplet and doesn’t fully support features like copying and pasting.
Use the Recovery Console only to recover from network issues when you can’t connect to your Droplet and to boot into the recovery ISO. The Droplet Console is otherwise a better option for general command-line management of your Droplets.
If you typically log in to your Droplet using a password, or if you have set a password for the
root or a
sudo user on the system, you already have the credentials you need to log in.
If you log in to your server using SSH keys and have not set up a password for the
root account or a
sudo user, you need to use the DigitalOcean Control Panel to create a new root password.
Navigate to the control panel. From the project the Droplet is in, or from the main navigation’s Droplets page, locate the Droplet. Click the Droplet’s name to open its detail page, then select Access in the left navigation.
Click Reset Root Password to reset the Droplet’s password. You will receive an email containing the Droplet’s temporary password.
From the DigitalOcean Control Panel, first click the name of the Droplet you want to access, then select Access from the left navigation. Click the Launch Recovery Console button to open the recovery console.
When the console opens, click the console screen and press
ENTER to ensure that the login prompt has focus. At the login prompt, enter the user you want to log in as. This is typically the
root user or a user configured with
If you type directly into the console, it may initially read your number keys incorrectly, as if the
SHIFT key is pressed. For example, pressing the 2 key may enter
This happens only when typing. You can avoid the problem by copying the text, then pasting it into the console by pressing
CTRL + v. You can also reset this behavior and ensure that your key strokes are being received correctly by pressing
CTRL a few times, then testing your number keys again.
When prompted, enter the password associated with the account. For security purposes, your password will not be displayed on the screen as you type or paste it into the command line.
Once you’ve entered the password, press
ENTER. If this is the first time you’ve logged in after resetting the root password through the control panel, you are prompted to enter the password again, then asked to choose a new password.
You are required to change your password immediately (root enforced) Changing password for root. (current) UNIX password: Enter new UNIX password: Retype new UNIX password:
Once you’ve successfully entered your credentials you should be logged in to your Droplet. From here, you can repair or reset configuration files or services to restore network access.