How to Install and Configure ProFTPD on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS

FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is probably the most popular method of uploading files to a server; a wide array of FTP servers, such as ProFTPD, and clients exist for every platform.

Pre-Flight Check
  • These instructions are intended specifically for installing the ProFTPD on Ubuntu 14.04 LTS.
  • I’ll be working from a Liquid Web Core Managed Ubuntu 14.04 LTS server, and I’ll be logged in as root.

Step 1: Install ProFTPD
Warning: FTP data is insecure; traffic is not encrypted, and all transmissions are clear text (including usernames, passwords, commands, and data). Consider securing your FTP connection with SSL/TLS.

First, you’ll follow a simple best practice: ensuring the list of available packages is up to date before installing anything new.

apt-get update

Then let’s install ProFTPD and any required packages:

apt-get -y install proftpd

During the install process you’ll be prompted with the following screen:

How to Install ProFTPD on Ubuntu 12.04 LTS

Select standalone and then Ok to finish the installation.

Step 2: Configure ProFTPD

For a refresher on editing files with vim see: New User Tutorial: Overview of the Vim Text Editor

Let’s edit the configuration file for ProFTPD:

vim /etc/proftpd/proftpd.conf

Change the ServerName to the hostname of your server. In the case below, ftp.thebestfakedomainnameintheworld.com is an example:

ServerName “ftp.thebestfakedomainnameintheworld.com”

To limit users to their home directory uncomment the line that says DefaultRoot:

# Use this to jail all users in their homes
DefaultRoot ~

Exit and save the file with the command :wq .

Restart the ProFTPD service:

service proftpd restart

Then set the ProFTPD service to start at boot:

update-rc.d proftpd defaults

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