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ipython-qtconsole ( is by far the best REPL for python. The qtconsole adds block editing, syntax highlighting, inline function definitions, better tab completion, HTML/PNG/SVG object representations, inline plotting and other indispensible goodies. Unfortunately, sometimes we want to run ipython on remote hosts. Well, fear not, ipyssh makes this a oneliner! It is a simple bash script that handles copying and cleaning of remote json-data and terminates the remote kernel on exit.

Requires ipython >= 0.12 on the host and ipython-qtconsole >= 0.12 on the client. You may get away with 0.11, but I have not tested it.

Usage: ipyssh [hostname]

If no hostname is supplied, it runs locally, just like an alias to ipython-qtconsole. Hostname may optionally include user and port, as in user@hostname:port. I recommend that you use your ssh_config to set up proper aliases, though.

Here is an Ubuntu PPA:

If you don't want --pylab=inline on the remote ipython kernel, or would like another color scheme or something, the shell file is utterly non-threatening, so feel free to customize it.

If you want to know who started a kernel on a server, where several people use the same login, do ls /tmp/*.ipypid. The client username is the first part of the filename. The files contain a reference to the corresponding ipython process ID.

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