Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Albuquerque, NM, USA
Device(s): Droid 3 (rooted/debloated), Kindle Fire (rooted, overclocked, FFF/CWM),
Nexus 7, (rooted/CWM touch)
Carrier: Verizon, WiFi via DD-WRT
Thanked 47 Times in 37 Posts
Ok, so maybe that last example is a bit far fetched for you... because your phone is never far from your computer. My phone often is away from me, so I do use it as described above. Also, it's not just about remote shells. You can easily transfer files between your machine and your phone via sftp, even when those two devices are far from one another.
Here is a more practical application of SSH port forwarding, that I use every single day: Unlimited surveillance camera monitoring...
I have an IP-based surveillance camera on my local home network. I also have a desktop linux box on my home network. I can access the video camera via its web-access port 80 when at home via wifi. Now, when on the road, let's say I want to access my home webcam from my Droid. I can use the Seedonk app, but that app sucks because it only streams for a few minutes at a time, and Seedonk costs money. Instead, when on the road, I use ConnectBot on my Droid to ssh to my home linux machine, and I _reverse_ (aka remote) port forward the IP camera's web browser to a port on my Droid. Now, that makes the web cam look like it's attached directly to my Droid, when I'm actually hundreds of miles away! I then use the freebie IP Cam Viewer app (in the market) and tell it the cam is connected directly to my Droid (localhost) at the port I used in ConnectBot port forward. That way, I can have a continuous 24-hour webcam connection to my Droid via 3G without using payed servers utilizing limited connect times.
Hope this all wasn't too confusing. Neall
PS: By the way, you don't need a linux box at home to ssh into your home network and forward ports from an IP camera. Many home wifi routers can run linux, so you can install a custom ROM into your home router (such as DD-WRT into your Linksys router) and you can actually SSH right into your home router from your Droid from anywhere.