First, thanks for responding so quick!

I've been trying various syntaxes, and reading the online book for ruby. I
tried your syntax above to no avail. I even tried setting the argument to
another variable name and using it instead like:

CODE:
def do_sshget (sshserver)


  sserver = sshserver

  Net::SSH.start(sserver, ...
  ...
end

And just
CODE:
def do_sshget (sshserver)


  
  Net::SSH.start(sshserver, ...
  ...
end

************************
I call with :
do_sshget("someserver123")
To no avail, same error
ERROR:
C:/ruby/lib/ruby/site_ruby/1.8/net/ssh/transport/session.rb:83:in
`initialize':
getaddrinfo: no address associated with hostname. (SocketError)
        from
C:/ruby/lib/ruby/site_ruby/1.8/net/ssh/transport/session.rb:83:in `
open'

********************************
 :( What the heck am I doing wrong?

I don't think SFTP is installed/active on these servers. Using pscp isn't
too much of a problem tho. I get the impression that scp is becoming
deprecated throughout most languages (at least Perl) but in the real world
its still on every box ;)