How to Upload Information to VMware through SFTP

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What is SFTP?

Secure file transfer protocol (SFTP) is a network protocol that runs encrypted data communication between two systems over Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). It is similar to secure shell (SSH) and is often referred to as SSH File Transfer Protocol (FTP) or Secure File Transfer Protocol.

SFTP enables secure file access, transfer, and management over any reliable data stream. And because it runs over a secure connection, it requires the same authentication methods as SSH.

This article walks through how to use SFTP to upload data to VMWare.

Uses for Uploading Information to VMware via SFTP

There are two use cases for uploading information to VMware covered in this tutorial:

  • Uploading to VMware for Troubleshooting.
  • Uploading Data to Your VMware Virtual Machines.

There are a few different ways to use SFTP for data upload regardless of your purpose or VMware environment. Here are three ways to get you started:

Uploading Files to the VMware SFTP Portal 

Upon troubleshooting reported issues or working on requests, it may be required to provide diagnostic information for additional technical support. VMware offers a secure FTP portal for sending the necessary data.

There are three methods available to upload information to VMware using this portal.

Uploading From the Browser

Supported browsers for VMware FTP upload are:

  • Chrome (or Chromium-based browsers).
  • Firefox.
  • Safari.
  • Internet Explorer 9 and above.

Files larger than 2GB are supported, but VMware performed testing for the portal with files no larger than 5GB. So if you're uploading a large file, the best practice is to break it into smaller segments before the upload.

1. Open the portal in your browser.

2. From the login screen, enter the following credentials and click Login:

  • Username: inbound.
  • Password: inbound.

3. Type a valid VMware support request number and click Next.

4. Select your files by clicking Add File or by dragging them into the page. Click the Upload button.

5. Once the upload completes, update your VMware technical support engineer by email ( or update your support request through VMware Customer Connect.

Uploading Though a Third Party SFTP Client

1. To upload files over a third-party SFTP client such as FileZilla, install the client.

2. Switch the transfer type to Binary by clicking on the Transfer menu and updating the Transfer type.

3. To connect to the VMware SFTP portal, click File followed by Site Manager.

4. Enter the following details in the General tab:

  • Protocol: SFTP – SSH File Transfer Protocol
  • Host:
  • Port: 22
  • Logon Type: Normal
  • User: inbound
  • Password: inbound

5. Click the Connect button. You are prompted to trust the host, as FileZilla works on the Trust On First Use (TOFU) model.

Click OK to proceed.

After establishing the connection, you will get the message the directory listing was successful, but nothing will be listed as the directory listing is disabled for security reasons.

6. To upload your files, right-click next to the folder under Filename and click Create directory. Enter your service request number as the directory name.

7. Double-click to enter your newly created service request directory and upload your files. 

You can monitor the upload progress in the Queued files panel. Notify your technical support engineer once completed or update your support request through VMware Customer Connect.

Uploading Over the Linux Command Line

You have the option to upload files directly from your virtual machine to the VMware SFTP site if your firewall rules allow it. To start, launch the terminal session from your virtual machine or connect over SSH.

1. To create a directory for the files, use the mkdir command and name the directory the number of your service request. For example, if your service request number is 12345678901, use the following syntax.

sftp> mkdir 12345678901

2. Move to the newly created directory with the cd command and use the put command to upload the file. If you wish to upload multiple files, use the mput command.

sftp> cd 12345678901
sftp> put our_file_name

3. If you already have a directory for the files, change directories into the path where your files are located and use the following command to connect to the VMware SFTP site.

[root@host home]# sftp
The authenticity of host ' (' can't be established.
RSA key fingerprint is SHA256:7IwLqtcrtc42bJQBbnY9IZMyzch4QmUCU4IdZOznJ4Q.
RSA key fingerprint is MD5:70:5c:8e:32:3d:3a:55:9a:54:66:fe:56:32:5f:16:39.
Are you sure you want to continue connecting (yes/no)? yes
Warning: Permanently added ',' (RSA) to the list of known hosts.
VMWARE Secure FTP Server:- Directory Name Must Be 11 Digit SR Number's password:
Connected to

4. Confirm the authenticity of the host by typing Yes, then Enter when prompted. The password used to establish the connection is also inbound, as in previous examples.

5. Once completed, inform your technical support engineer or update your support request through VMware Customer Connect.

Uploading Files Over SFTP to VMware via Command Line

This option is for uploading data to your unique VMware environment. You need root access and credentials to complete this option. Use either the sftp command or scp command.

1. To SFTP into your VMware Private Cloud, use the following command where the x.x.x.x represents your virtual machine IP address.

$ sftp root@x.x.x.x -p22
If your SSH port is the default port 22, you don’t have to specify it in the command. However, if using another port for SSH, adjust that part of the command.

2. Once the command executes, it prompts for the root password. Type it to complete the connection to VMware over SFTP.

$ sftp root@ -p22

VMware vCenter Server Appliance

Type: vCenter Server with an embedded Platform Services Controller

root@'s password:
Connected to

Uploading Files To VMware Over SFTP Using Third-Party Clients

To connect to your VMware virtual machine over a third-party SFTP client such as FileZilla, you need root access and credentials. You also need FileZilla installed on the computer you plan to use.

1. To connect over FileZilla, select File from the menu and open Site Manager.

2. Use the following settings in the General tab:

  • Protocol: SFTP
  • Host: The IP address of your virtual machine
  • Port: your SSH port
  • User: root
  • Password: your root user password

You get the following output upon successful connection.

3 Double-click your desired directory to begin uploading your files. You can monitor the upload progress in the Queued files panel. 


There are many different methods to upload information to VMware through SFTP. This article covered uploading to the VMware SFTP site for troubleshooting support issues and uploading files to your VMware virtual machine.

Are you looking for a hosted VMware solution with support for these and other requests? If you're ready but not sure where to start or what is suitable for you, check out our private cloud vs public cloud comparison and contact our sales team to get started.

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