4.1. Configuration principles

4.1.1. Introduction

The server provides a wide range of configuration options, which can be managed using one of the following methods:

  • Using the web-based graphical user interface. To learn more, please visit the Local Configuration Manager page.

  • Editing the configuration file using your preferred text editor. Please see the Configuration File section for more information.


Parallel configuration using both methods should work, but it is not supported.

Following a successful installation, the server will start with a sample configuration file which enables the Web Manager service together with the default FTPS and SFTP file transfer services.

You can configure the server starting from this sample configuration file, using one of the above described configuration methods.

Before proceeding, here are some suggestions regarding which areas one should start with:

  • Generating new configuration file, SSH keys and self-signed certificates;

  • Customizing the server;

  • Adding services and configuring them according to your needs;

  • Managing groups and users access rights.

4.1.2. Universally unique identifiers

To keep a reference of its entities (servers/accounts/services/groups/etc.), the server configuration is defined using universally unique identifiers.

While managing the configuration using the Web Manager, you will not have to generate UUIDs, and most of the time the Web Manager's user interface will hide the complexity of working with UUIDs.

A universally unique identifier (UUID) is an identifier standard used in software construction, standardized by the Open Software Foundation (OSF) as part of the Distributed Computing Environment (DCE).

Here is a sample UUID:


UUIDs are used by the server to support the renaming of accounts, services, servers, etc., and to provide a detailed audit of all activities performed by an entity, even before or after renaming it.

Since UUIDs are designed for computer usage, each UUID has an associated name configuration option. The name option is the human-readable identifier of an entity, and it can be changed at any time, allowing easy renaming of services, accounts, groups, etc.

In the context of distributed systems, the usage of UUIDs enables identifying information without significant central coordination. This allows the server to participate in a distributed cluster for high performance or high availability/resilience architectures.

For simple deployments, you can also use any string as a universally unique identifier, as long as you make sure it is not used for another entity. We recommend using a universally unique identifier different from the main name for that entity (account/group/service/etc.), so that later you can perform rename operations.

We recommend using UUIDs as per the standard RFC4122 format.


UUID value should not include the forward slash / or the vertical bar | characters.

4.1.3. Default configuration values

Inside the configuration file, when a configuration option is missing from a section, the default value is applied.

For example, when the default value for the enabled configuration option is Yes, in the following configurations both implicit_section and defined_section will have enabled set to Yes:

name = 'implicit_section'

enabled = Yes
name = 'defined_section'

The default value of each configuration option is included as part of the documentation for that option.

When an option is defined as required (Optional: No), it will not have a default value and SFTPPlus will fail to process the component associated with that option.

4.1.4. Comma-separated values

Some configuration options allow defining multiple values in CSV (comma-separated value) format. When a specific value contains a comma, the whole value should be enclosed in double quotation marks. For example, to dispatch to path /some/destination,with,commas/ you should configure the value as:

dispatch_rule = move, *.pdf, "/some/destination,with,commas/"

When a specific value contains a comma and quote, the whole value should be enclosed in double quotation marks, and the quotation character itself be represented as two consecutive double quotation marks. For example, to dispatch to path /some/new,destination"with"quotes/ you should configure the value as:

dispatch_rule = move, *.pdf, "/some/new,destination""with""quotes/"

When a specific value contains only quotes and no commas, you don't need to enclose the whole value in double quotation marks. For example, to dispatch to path /some/destination"with"quotes/ you should configure the value as:

dispatch_rule = move, *.pdf, /some/destination"with"quotes/

4.1.5. Absolute and relative paths

When a configuration option requires a path on the local filesystem, the path can be set as an absolute or relative path.

When relative paths are used inside the configuration file, in all cases, they will be relative to the server's installation folder.

For example, in the following case log/server.log will be either /opt/sftpplus/log/server.log or, on Windows, C:\Program Files\SFTPPlus\log\server.log:

type = local-file

path = log/server.log

Similarly, the ssh_authorized_keys_path text file configuration will be expanded to /opt/sftpplus/.ssh/authorized_keys or, on Windows, C:\Program Files\SFTPPlus\.ssh\authorized_keys:

name = test_user
type = application
enabled = No
home_folder_path = /home/test_user
ssh_authorized_keys_path = .ssh/authorized_keys


ssh_authorized_keys_path is not expanded to /home/test_user/.ssh/authorized_keys or, on Windows, to C:\Users\test_user\.ssh\authorized_keys.

4.1.6. Configuration changes for active connections or users

Many of the configuration changes are only applied to newly created connections or newly authenticated users. An active connection or a user will not be abruptly disconnected due to a configuration change.

If you want to enforce a new configuration for all the active users, a full server restart is required. This will disconnect all the active connection and users will have to reconnect and re-authenticate using the new configuration.