Recently I’ve had a situation that on one of the servers with Plesk panel installed on it SSH service was not working. Unfortunately there is no way to restart the service via panel for some reason. You can restart other services, but not ssh, probably because service itself is not managed in any way by Plesk panel.

Anyhow, interesting way to hack around this was to use cron jobs to execute tasks and restart the service :-)

To do that you need to:

  1. Open up Server settings in admin panel

  2. Select “Scheduled tasks” under “Server” section

  3. Define new task with command

    service sshd start

Instead of saving the cron job you have the option “Run now” which will start command immediately. If there are some startup errors they’ll be printed in the bottom right hand corner of the screen when clicking on “More” besides error message.

In my particular case there were errors that certain directives couldn’t be used within MatchAddress directive, so I’ve used same interface to replace comment out those lines with sed.

Turns out somebody placed MatchAddress directive too high in the /etc/ssh/sshd_config file. Interesting issue, huh? :-)