If you have recently jailbroken your Apple TV2 for the first time, you might find yourself wondering what to do next. Sure the default NitoTV is cool, but there’s only so much you can do with it.

If you are seriously looking to venture into the world of Apple TV hacking, you might want to pay attention. One of the best ways to access your Apple TV and install files is through SSH. This is just basically a secure connection between 2 devices.

In this case it is between your computer and your Apple TV2. OpenSSH, written by Saurik is installed during the jailbreak process. This is what allows your Apple TV to make a connection with your computer.

I’m on a Mac but I assume it is basically the same process for Windows users with its command line prompt app. Mac users open spotlight and type in Terminal. Once open you want to enter the following:

ssh root@192.168.x.x

Obviously you want to fill in the x’s with your Apple TV2 IP address. To find it, just open the main Apple TV menu and go to Settings > General > Network > IP address.

Don’t get discouraged if you don’t get it right away, it took me a few minutes before I finally got prompted for a password. Also you must make sure you are on the same Wi-Fi network as your Apple TV.

The default Apple password is alpine, like on all of their other iOS devices. ┬áType it in and hit enter. You should now see Apple-TV:~root# which means you have write access to Apple TV’s hard disk.

For an example I will give you the commands to install XBMC on your AppleTV2 which is a popular home theatre PC software.

echo “deb http://mirrors.xbmc.org/apt/atv2 ./” > /etc/apt/sources.list.d/xbmc.list

apt-get update

apt-get install org.xbmc.xbmc-atv2

After the last line is entered, you should see some code scrolling across your Apple TV2 and your machine will restart. After it reboots, you should see XBMC in your Apple TV Main Menu. You have successfully SSH’d into your Apple TV!

Any questions?

  • Gus

    How do I install hulu tv on atv2?

  • jlove

    when i got to the commands to install the xmbc they didn’t work

  • Chris

    I keep getting this error: E: Malformed line 1 in source list /etc/apt/sources.list.d/xbmc.list (dist) Not exactly sure it is jailbroken since season pass is not showing. Assuming that since I am logged in to terminal that it is jailbroken…am I correct?

  • disqus_jzAmtlrC00

    Fast way to ssh without a computer or apple device. I was a big iPhone fan, I even have a fan page on facebook with 7000 fans but lost interest after changing to android which enjoy a lot more. Apple is too controlling of their devices that they sell to “YOU” but it seems like they still own it. The new Apple Tv 3 is still not jailbreakable and they dont seem to get it that people mostly buy their devices to jailbreak (especially the atv) What is so special about the atv if you cant jailbreak. If the atv 3 cant be jailbroken I hope people wake up and buy Android devices even their TV. Enough of that.
    Thought I would share an SSH alternative for those who don’t feel like turning on your computer and would like to do a quick SSH into their devices. This is android so you can use your android phone or tablet to SSH repository into your ATV or idevice. I use es file explorer a free android app to SSH into my apple TV 2. Since I use xbmc on my LG Optimistic 2x and my Acer A500, I have all the repo’s on them. Great to use to clean up cache and memory on the atv2. When you download es file explorer and open it you will see your folders you then swipe to the right twice and at the top left corner you will see a button FTP you press and you will see other options. Choose sftp and a box will pop up which is similar to cyberduck on Mac (I can’t remember how winscp or windows version looks, Mac is the Mac)
    Fill out the info exactly the same IP, root, password and it will show your connection icon which you then press. Find var and press, then mobile and add your repo’s.
    If you want to SSH with terminal like on Mac you can also use Better Terminal Emulator which also has a pro version which I use. You choose BTEP (I’m not sure if local would work I’m assuming local will do your android device) and fill out the info the way you would with cyberduck. You can than choose ‘create shortcut’ which will put a widget on your home screen. You can then access SSH fast just press and start sshing you apple TV or iPhone. I find this way to be so much easier and while your watching your apple TV. Sometimes the memory/cache gets full oso instead of turning on the Mac and waiting then opening cyberduck and waiting, I just turn my sleeping android device on and press and go with es file explorer or with better terminal. I hope this helps. I have one question. Has anyone found a working stagevu repo? Let me know if this helps.