Windows 7 FTP command line hangs, but works in Windows Explorer. XP works in command-line

We have a group of remote users that like to use the command line to access the FTP, using the Windows builtin ftp.exe client. Windows 7 users on command line can sign in to the FTP client, but can't issue any commands (dir will hang). Everything works on the Windows Explorer UI, if you add the FTP as a network location.

Windows XP is able to use command line to login and issue commands on the FTP.

I can't figure out why the command line doesnt work when on VPN, only for Windows 7. And I can't use Wireshark to view the VPN traffic, as the VPN interface isn't detected.

Has anyone experienced this, or have any thoughts?

1 answer

  • answered 2018-01-11 19:41 Martin Prikryl

    Windows ftp.exe supports FTP active mode only.

    Transfers (including directory listing transfers) in the active FTP mode work by the server connecting to the client. For that to work, your Windows firewall, as well as any other external firewalls and NATs, have to be configured to allow the incoming connection. For that reason the active mode (including the ftp.exe) is pretty much useless nowadays.

    You better use another command-line FTP client. Most other clients do support the passive mode.

    Windows Explorer also supports the passive mode.

    There should not be much difference in XP vs 7. But your Windows XP firewall is probably already configured to allow the incoming FTP connections.

    See my article on the network configuration needed for active and passive FTP modes.