Convert PEM files to PPK to use them in PuTTY

When you create a key in AWS you can download it one time in PEM format. To use it in PuTTY, the free SSH and Telnet client, you have to convert it to PPK format.

To install PuTTY, see the Terminal Emulator section in Recommended utilities for your workstation

To convert a PEM file to PPK

  1. Open a terminal window in the folder of the PEM file
  2. Execute the following
    puttygen MYKEY.pem -o MYKEY.ppk


Recommended utilities for your workstation



Snagit is a great utility to capture screens and annotate them for documentation. The program is available for Mac and Windows.

Download the latest version at

Get older versions at

Terminal emulator


Install PuTTY

On Macintosh

  1. Open a terminal window
  2. Install PuTTY with Homebrew. For the Homebrew installation see the Homebrew section of Install the DevOps development tools on Macintosh
    brew install putty

On Windows

  1. Download the MSI (‘Windows Installer’) of PuTTY from,
  2. Execute the MSI installer.