Connection Troubleshooting

Follow this step-by-step procedure to resolve your connection problems:

1. Verify Host Name

The host name must be correct in order to establish an FTP connection.  Usually you will obtain the host name from your hosting service or whoever administers the server along with your login name and password.

NOTE: Host names should NOT start with ftp:// or http://

The following is an example of a complete URL to a file located on an FTP server.

URL:

ftp://ftp.ftpx.com/pub/ftpx

The hostname is the part between the second slash and the third slash:

HOST NAME:

ftp.ftpx.com

If you are unsure about the host name, contact the administrator of the FTP server that you are wishing to connect with in order to determine what host name to use.

2. Ping The Host

To verify that the host name that you are using is valid and that you have network connectivity with the host, open a command prompt window and ping the host.

  • Select START | RUN
  • Enter "cmd" and select OK
  • Type "ping hostname" at the prompt, where hostname is the hostname you wish to test, for example:  ping ftp.ftpx.com
  • Press enter.

The results should look something like this:

C:\>ping ftp.ftpx.com

Pinging ftp.ftpx.com [209.217.49.158] with 32 bytes of data:

Reply from 209.217.49.158: bytes=32 time=26ms TTL=122
Reply from 209.217.49.158: bytes=32 time=12ms TTL=122
Reply from 209.217.49.158: bytes=32 time=11ms TTL=122
Reply from 209.217.49.158: bytes=32 time=11ms TTL=122

Ping statistics for 209.217.49.158:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 4, Lost = 0 (0% loss),
Approximate round trip times in milli-seconds:
Minimum = 11ms, Maximum = 26ms, Average = 15ms

The "Reply from" lines indicate that a response was received from the host.

If the results look like this, then the host name is likely invalid:

C:\>ping ftp.badhost.com
Ping request could not find host ftp.badhost.com. Please check the name and try again.

If the results look like this, then the host name is probably valid and the host is just down or unreachable from your system:

C:\>ping ftp.deadhost.com

Pinging ftp.deadhost.com [192.168.1.100] with 32 bytes of data:

Request timed out.
Request timed out.
Request timed out.
Request timed out.

Ping statistics for 192.168.1.100:
Packets: Sent = 4, Received = 0, Lost = 4 (100% loss),

2. Temporarily Disable Firewall Software

If you are running Windows firewall software, it may be blocking the FTP connection.

Try disabling it temporarily and see if the FTP connection succeeds.

If you can connect with the firewall software disabled, then you'll need to configure the firewall to allow FTP connections.

Be sure to re-enable the firewall software to protect your system from unwanted intrusions.

3. Verify the FTP server is Accepting Connections

All Computer systems don't automatically have FTP servers running on them.  FTP servers must be specifically configured and enabled before connections will be accepted.

Try using the Windows command line FTP client to establish a connection to the FTP server.

  • Select START | RUN
  • Enter "cmd" and select OK
  • Type "ftp hostname" at the prompt, where hostname is the hostname you wish to test, for example:  ftp ftp.ftpx.com
  • Press enter.

If the server is accepting for connections, the results should look something like this:

C:\>ftp ftp.ftpx.com
Connected to ftp.ftpx.com.
220 Microsoft FTP Service
User (ftp.ftpx.com:(none)):

If you're able to PING the host (see step 1) and you've disabled any firewall software on your system (see step 2) and you are unable to connect with the command line ftp client, then it is likely that the server is not accepting connections.

Contact the administrator of the FTP server to determine its status.

4. Try Using PASV Mode

If you are able to establish a connection to a server, but the LIST command is failing, try enabling PASV mode by checking the "Use PASV Mode" checkbox on the Connect dialog.

Often PASV mode will work through firewall software and routers when non-PASV connections fail.

Click here for more information about PASV mode.