Secure Shell, better known as SSH, is a cryptographic network protocol that is used to execute commands on a remote machine or to exchange data between a server and a client. Since the data exchanged by the two sides is encrypted, a third party can't intercept it, which makes SSH a preferred means of controlling an Internet hosting account. The commands which may be executed are determined by the type of hosting service. On a shared web server, for example, the alternatives are limited since you will not have root access to the web server, so you can simply create/move/delete files, set up and unpack archives, import and export databases, and so forth. These are all actions that are performed inside the shared hosting account and don't need a higher level of access. By using a virtual or a dedicated server, you will have the ability to install server-side software or to restart the server or just a particular service (web server, database server, etc.). SSH commands are submitted via a command line, and if you do not use a UNIX-like OS, there are a lot of applications for other OSs, that you can use to connect to the remote web server as well.