How to setup an SFTP / FTP server
Traditionally setting up an SFTP server involved finding hardware or creating a file server as a virtual machine, working out how to run a Linux package, ensuring firewall rules are configured and then attempt to have your third party connect and interact with files that would also reside on the same server.
Now days this is highly simplified with cloud solutions that make this process easy as they remove the need for managing infrastructure and firewalls and can integrate with your cloud storage (SharePoint, Dropbox, S3, etc.) to make data accessible outside of the SFTP server itself.
Configuring an SFTP server now can take literally 5 minutes and only takes a few steps, these steps in sumamry are:
- Step 1 — Create Couchdrop account
- Step 2 — Connect storage (or choose Couchdrop’s storage)
- Step 3 — Create an SFTP/FTP user for your external users/parties
- Step 4 — Have your users connect via SFTP/FTP
How to setup an SFTP / FTP server guide
Step 1 — Create Couchdrop account
Navigate to Couchdrop and create an account. Don’t worry you don’t need a credit card straightaway and you can get access to a free trial for 14-days to test and make sure it does what you need it to.
Step 2 — Connect Storage
Once you’ve signed up you will immediately get a screen (see below) where you can now connect your storage backend, select your desired storage by selecting Add Connection within the tile.
Note: If you don’t wish to connect your own storage, you can simply opt in to use Couchdrop’s storage which is encrypted and backed by Amazon S3.
In this case we’re connecting Couchdrop’s storage, and selecting the US region. Take note of the alias you name it, in this case we’ve called it cdstorage.
Step 3 — Create an SFTP/FTP user
Now you need to create a user for your external party to connect to your new SFTP server with.
- Head to Administration -> User Accounts and Create New User
- Configure the account with the following: Username, Password, Directory (this will be under the alias of your storage you connected before), Make the user active and then Save User Settings
Note: You can specify a sub-directory here under the Home/Root Directory section so that each device accesses its own home folder within your root storage folder.
Step 4 — Have your user now connect via SFTP
Provide the following information to your user for configuration in their SFTP client:
- SFTP/FTP Hostname (SFTP/FTP domain found here)
- Username and Password (for the user created before)