One of the more well known features in bash is command and filename tab completion. Installing the bash-completion package adds onto this. This package enables hostname completion and a lot more. After installing bash-completion, add the following to your .bashrc:
. /etc/bash_completion complete -F _known_hosts ssh I also suggest adding complete -F _known_hosts ping complete -F _known_hosts traceroute
Hostname completion relies on the ssh known_hosts file. Most modern distributions hash the ~/.ssh/known_hosts file for security reasons. This prevents hostname completion from working. If you are comfortable turning off hostname hashing, then add the following to your ~/.ssh/config:
If you had to turn off hostname hashing, you will need to re-populate your known_hosts file. I suggest creating a list of all of your hosts and logging into them in a for loop:
for i in $(cat hostlist) do ssh -n -o StrictHostKeyChecking=no $i "uname -a" done
This assumes that you are using ssh keys. If you are not, you will need to type your password for each host. At this point you can now use hostname tab completion. If you added the second two complete commands, the same hostname completion will work for ping and traceroute.