TConsult Web Dev Inc. - Web Development

Cerberus FTP Server for Secure File Transfer

Normal FTP transactions between a user's PC and a Web server requires very little effort. A normal FTP client (some of which are free) or by using Windows Explorer will allow virtually anyone to transfer files between machines permitting they have proper credentials. However; when building automated FTP file transfers between two systems (as we have recently completed) normally requires that connection to be secure and is referenced as FTPS (File Transfer Protocol Secure).

Unfortunately, FTPS is not built-in to Microsoft's Internet Information Server. In order to obtain it you must purchase and install your own FTPS server. Our choice was Cerberus FTP server - an easy to install and powerful FTP server capable of secure file transfers.

Cerberus is a little different of a beast than Microsoft's FTP manager but that does not mean it is difficult to use. Once installed - requires purchase, download, presence of SSL certificate, and opening ports on the firewall - you can manage user accounts down to the nth degree by restricting users to their own unique directory (called simple directories) or allowing a user to access multiple folders under one login.

You then have the option of requiring FTPS or using normal FTP for the accounts. Thus, a user can connect through normal FTP methods or only through FTPS.

We do not have a reseller agreement with Cerberus so there is no conflict of interest in recommending their product. By the way - it does come with a FREE trial to get it working and a fairly responsive message board for support.

Installing it and configuring it does require some technical know-how as I mentioned earlier. In order to run under FTPS you need to have an SSL certificate installed on the machine that it can use. If you already have an SSL certificate for your Website then you can use that.
*** Please note that many FTP clients out there (such as WSFTP and FileZilla) do not seem to have GODaddy SSL certificates in their store as a trusted provider. When connecting manually through traditional FTP clients - users may be warned about the certificate's authenticity.

One last thing - You will need a dedicated Web server or dedicated cloud.

If your company is looking for their own FTP solution especially for system wide integration under FTPS then don't hesitate to contact us to oversee your solution.

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