Resolving Git via ssh asking for password on Windows (valid key, Gitolite repo)

Sigh, I just spent several hours poking myself in the eye with a stick over a Git client issue.

I have a Win7 system (Dell, of course) with TortoiseSVN, PuTTY, and GIT all happily configured.  I’ve been using Github via HTTP without any issues.

We recently spun up Gitolite to maintain a local clone of our public repos.  For this inside-the-firewall repo, we are only allowing SSH connections.   The SSH key bits are well documented; however, I encountered an error that did not surrender to Google.

I was able to verify my key using SSH “ssh -T gitolite@[host]” with a return that included all the available repos.  That showed me that my public key was correctly registered and my private key was correctly stashed.

HOWEVER, When I run “git clone gitolite@[host]:crowbar” I would get prompted for a password for gitolite.

The resolution turned out to be simple: Git could not use the TortoiseSVN Plink!

When I inspected the environment variable GIT_SSH, it gave me the path for plink.exe.

I removed the GIT_SSH setting (using “set GIT_SSH=”) and that immediately resolved the issue.