View Full Version : Setting up my own ftp server.

05-30-2010, 03:06 PM


I have a couple of old Mac's kicking around, and a bunch of drives.

I'd like to set one up permanently connected to the internet and use it to make my Pro Tools sessions available to one other via ftp.

I'm sure this is like falling off a log, but I've not done it before.

Sage advice sought.


05-30-2010, 09:51 PM
Hey Bigs -

Probably depends on the OS, hardware, and where you want to access to/from.

On late model boxes, you can simply use System Prefs/Sharing. Easy enough if it is only for LAN access. Can use AFP, SMB, and FTP.

If you want to get access to shared files on one of your machines from a remote location (sounds like it, as you mentioned internet)......other stuff involved. Several ways to go too. The biggest issue is finding your machine if you don't have at least a single static IP address. If you do, pretty easy to up and running....

If you don't, you need a DDNS option to find your home network/computer when your IP address changes. If ISPs in the UK follow the same methods as here in the US, your IP address will change from time to time unless you pay for a static one.

Even without a static IP, there are a few tools that keep track and let you have easy access. Here (http://www.macinstruct.com/node/152) is an idea of what is involved to get ddns going.

05-30-2010, 10:40 PM
I just want to follow along and learn or better undrstand how it works. :D

05-31-2010, 03:22 AM
I have a static IP address, a Netgear DG834 modem/router, and a wired ethernet connection to the Mac.

I set up the DynDNS account anyway.

As ever, it's the NAT function of the router which I really don't understand.

What else should I do to enable an ftp client to find it's way to my machine?

05-31-2010, 11:14 PM
OK, static makes it easy. Forget DDNS.

Steps to use your static from beyond your LAN:

1. Setup your "server" Mac the way you need it. FTP and AFP services should be on, and permissions should be configured and tested....should be sharing happily on your LAN.

2. Set a manual IP on your server so that it never changes. If you are using DHCP, you should select a method to prevent an IP conflict: Change your DHCP to leave some unassigned addresses, make a DHCP reservation, or put your server IP at the far end of the range.

3. Use the NAT/port forwarding feature on your router to point to the server IP you set in step 2. You will need to be set up some ports to forward: AFP = 548, and FTP = 21. Here (http://kbserver.netgear.com/kb_web_files/n101145.asp) is more info on how to do this on your router.

The key here is to have your server up and happy with a manually set IP before proceeding; if the server and sharing is all good and tested (inside your LAN), the router part is very straight forward. Harder to wrap your brain around than setup.

06-01-2010, 08:00 PM
FYI: I keep mentioning AFP cause you can do file sharing over the web with AFP and not need any FTP client or configuration. Just Put your router static IP in the Server Address box, and you will connect. Will be a bit slow to navigate your Mac over the web (depending on both the server at home and your remote connection bandwidth), but it work just dandy. :)

Yell if I am moving too fast or something is not clear.

06-03-2010, 01:58 AM
Thanks for all the info Unc, I have the ol' B&W happily set up on the LAN with a Reserved Address being supplied by the Netgear router.

So, with those two static IP addresses, what is the format of the address to be used by an FTP client from the WAN?

With this setup the B&W is using the ftp server function of OS X and is only available as an ftp server to someone with a User account on the B&W. Correct?

06-03-2010, 07:01 AM
The FTP format (WAN) would be your Static IP address that your ISP provides. Once it gets to your router IT will send FTP requests to the proper LAN address without revealing that address to the user. You set that up in the port forwarding section of your router. Then your B&W will ask for an account name and password from the user.

06-03-2010, 08:43 AM
Thanks Damien! I logged in to say that I'd come to that same conclusion! I set the router to dish out a Reserved Address to the B&W, and set the router's firewall to send ftp (port21) requests to the B&W. Now I need somebody to test it from the WAN!

06-03-2010, 10:50 AM
be happy to test for you if your available

06-03-2010, 11:06 AM
........you might want to send the router IP via email, not post it here for the world to attack. ;)

06-03-2010, 02:28 PM
........you might want to send the router IP via email, not post it here for the world to attack. ;)


06-09-2010, 04:04 PM
Just a note to let ya know it all worked out well.

I wound up using PureFTPd Manager, shareware for 15Euros.

About a year ago, having had good luck with OEM drives despite Rick's advice, I did decide to go boxed-retail for the two 1TB upgrade drives for my G5. But I couldn't find any! So went OEM again. Bad news! Had to RMA one after 3 days. And had to RMA them both for a refund about a month later.... and then I got distracted, forgot to send them back. I managed to remember last week, just inside the vendor's 12 month warranty. By mistake, they sent me two new drives, with new warranties. Oh well! Why not?

So now I have the old G4DA loaded with 2 Terabyte harddrives on a 2-port Seritek, ATA DeskStar for System, OS X 10.4.11, headless, controlled with Timbuktu.

Thanks for the help.


06-09-2010, 11:50 PM
Nice. Another happy ending. :)

06-10-2010, 11:53 AM
Nice. Another happy ending. :)
You guys are awesome. :D

06-10-2010, 12:36 PM
having had good luck with OEM drives despite Rick's advice...

Ya know, I never once had an issue with a scsi OEM drive, but now that I am (almost) all ATA/SATA I have learned. No more OEM.

I currently have a WD Raptor 150gig that will only work on an internal SATA/PCI SATA bus and NOT on a bridgeboard, furthermore I have a Plextor DVDRW (fastest reader I own) that will work on a bridge and will not work on an internal SATA bus.

06-10-2010, 06:59 PM
... No more OEM...

My sentiments too.

I forgot to mention that did recently put retail-boxed drives in the G5.

The OEM's I just got seem to be working fine so far in the G4. The others went bad in about a week. We'll see.