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We currently have an automation process for pulling remote sales data from our restaurant terminals (all Windows based) via FTP. To make things awkward I now have to cater for one terminal that is android based, so I'm looking for an FTP Server for Android to do the same.

I have a few requirements:

  • The android device in question cannot be rooted, so no apps that require root.
  • The app must be able to start automatically on device boot.
  • The app must support passive ftp (the ability to set passive ports would be nice, but if I know the hardcoded port range this is just as good).
  • The app must be able to be bound to an external IP (the device sits behind a router, so it cannot use its internal IP address)
  • The app does not have to be free, as long as it works!

I feel like I've tried every FTP Server in the Play store. The closest I got was Free FTP Server by SQZSoft - it has all the features I mentioned, however a bug in the external IP binding setting is preventing me from entering anything (it appears to only accept integers). I've contacted the developer but he does not seem inclined to update it.

If anyone can suggest an app that does what I need, I'd be most grateful!

  • Your Android version? – Firelord Oct 13 '15 at 16:42
  • I would take an educated guess at Jelly Bean, but I would have to check to be sure - frustratingly the terminal is an hour's drive from our office and nobody there can tell me. – Ryan Gillies Oct 15 '15 at 8:06
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    Haven't used any of them, but be welcome to take a look at my FTP-Server list. With some luck, there's a candidate you've missed and it fits. – Izzy Oct 15 '15 at 8:24
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I use SSHelper. It is not an FTP server, but an SSH server. But should work very well if you control the client to use SSH instead of FTP.

The app must be able to be bound to an external IP (the device sits behind a router, so it cannot use its internal IP address)

Sorry, AFAIK this does not work. You need to control the router to open a server behind NAT.

My advice: Why do you want to start a server on the Android device? I guess the other way round is much more easy: The Android device is the client.

  • I never thought to use SFTP rather than FTP, it could be a good option. To clarify, the reason I need to bind the server to the external IP is because the server will always use its internal LAN IP address for PASV transfers. A lot of FTP clients can work around this, however our automation to extract the data is via Powershell, and the FtpWebRequest .Net Class cannot. – Ryan Gillies Oct 20 '15 at 8:19

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