SSH, which is an abbreviation for Secure Shell, is a network protocol which is used to exchange encrypted data between a client and a hosting server, making it impossible for unauthorized parties to intercept any data. Many tech-savvy users favor SSH mainly because of the better level of security. The connection is made and the commands are sent via a command line. The accessible options depend on the type of web hosting service - on a shared server, for instance, files can be moved or deleted, databases may be imported and exported, and archives may be created or unpacked. On a virtual or a dedicated server, the options are a lot more - the web server and the database server could be started/stopped/rebooted, server-side software may be set up plus much more. These things are not possible on a shared server, because full root access is needed and all the other clients on that server would be affected. Although SSH is employed mainly with UNIX-like Operating Systems, there are SSH clients for other OSs too - Windows, Mac OS, etc.