Quick Fix: FTP on SBS 2011 (Server 2008 R2)

sbsstdI have a new client who migrated to SBS 2011. They run some shipping label software that FTP’s information down from a server online to a local database on the server.

It used to run on a Server 2003 member server, but part of the migration was to move this onto the SBS 2011 box.

The company who support the software did the transfer, but when the software stalled when trying to ftp in, they had exhausted their knowledge and were out of ideas.

“…er, yeah don’t know how to do this on SBS…”

Don’t know about you,. but that always kinda annoys me!

Anyway, i confirmed FTP was working on the member server, quite easily with the FTP command line tool.

FTP Test

Doing so on the SBS 2011 server, showed that after a successful login, it would hang when issuing a DIR command.

FTP Hang

I entered a manual firewall rule for FTP, but this didn’t help.

I wondered then if there was any additional Firewalling that might be being done, at the application layer that would not otherwise be visible to configure in the GUI.

Going to the Advanced settings of Windows Firewall, i enabled Notifications.



I also ran a command that i found here to help with Passive FTP.

From an administrative CMD:

netsh advfirewall set global statefulftp enable


After doing both of these actions, i tried the FTP Command again, this time i was prompted to add an Application rule, which i did, and the command completed as expected!


This is actually a Server 2008 R2 issue, not an ‘SBS’ issue.

About Robert Pearman
Robert Pearman is a UK based Small Business Server enthusiast. He has been working within the SMB IT Industry for what feels like forever. Robert likes Piña colada and taking walks in the rain, on occasion he also enjoys writing about Small Business Technology like Windows Server Essentials or more recently writing PowerShell Scripts. If you're in trouble, and you can find him, maybe you can ask him a question.

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