Installing Telnet on Mac OS High Sierra with Homebrew

I was both sad and excited to see that Apple removed telnet from Mac OS High Sierra, excited because telnet is a nearly 40 year old protocol that is highly insecure for network management and saddened because I often have to use telnet when at client sites.

There are a few different methods you can use to bring back telnet, including copying over the binaries from a Sierra install to /usr/local/bin (as seen here)  or using a session manager like SecureCRT, but since I’ve been using Homebrew to manage a few other packages for a while now I figured I’d just go ahead and use that.

  • First install Homebrew from your terminal (warning: please don’t copy and paste code snippets from a web browser straight into your terminal, please double check your sources)
    • /usr/bin/ruby -e "$(curl -fsSL"
  • Run
    brew install telnet
==> Downloading
Already downloaded: /Users/me/Library/Caches/Homebrew/telnet-54.50.1.high_sierra.bottle.1.tar.gz
==> Pouring telnet-54.50.1.high_sierra.bottle.1.tar.gz
🍺  /usr/local/Cellar/telnet/54.50.1: 4 files, 246KB

There you have it. Run telnet by simply issuing the telnet command and the ip/port you want to connect to.