FTP Functionality

Gentlemen,

I have been very patient, but I am starting to get annoyed.  I need to be able to have my users access the EX2 via secure FTP.  I do not want them to have access to the admin account nor do I want them to be forced to install the WD software on their PC’s.  Why cant we get this function working??  How long is it going to take WD?

Regards,

GH

Vertech1 wrote:

Gentlemen,

I have been very patient, but I am starting to get annoyed.  I need to be able to have my users access the EX2 via secure FTP.  I do not want them to have access to the admin account nor do I want them to be forced to install the WD software on their PC’s.  Why cant we get this function working??  How long is it going to take WD?

 

Regards,

 

GH

Quite possibly, a while longer.

I never got around to update my other thread on the same topic ( http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/FTP-on-EX2-still-broken-in-firmware-1-03-41-3-months-after/td-p/750862 ) but WD Level 2 tech support did get in touch with me alast week, and the bottom line is this - they have sent the issue back to engineering again to investigate/verify my claim that it’s still broken - basically we are at the same stage we were 3 months ago, when I first reported it. There has been no further updates from them since then and if I am to go by WD’s track record on firmware updates, expect another 2-3 months before the next firmware and it’s not even known if they’ll include a fix for it.

They have been extremely thoughtful about my concerns (not being sarcastic) after I raised the issue last week - but without a fix, being thoughtful doesn’t make much difference…that’s why I did not bother updating that thread. Unless I hear something concrete as to when to expect a fix for the FTP bug, there is no point in mentioing about vague promises.

While some come here only to gripe, you Vertech1 and I have mostly used our input here to offer help to other community users. And I appreciate that WD has noticed that - it was obvious from the contact and gesture they made last week. However, I am also starting to see where some of the lesser patient folks are coming from.

A NAS without a working FTP esp. when it’s touted as an “advanced” feature in the ads, is inexcusable. And I do have a simple workaround to fix this - but it requires using SSH - and as WD mods will parrot here anytime you suggest an SSH fix, that you may do so at the risk ofvoiding your warranty…it leaves one with two options - wait for an unknown amount of time for a fix OR proceed to fix it on your own at the risk of voiding your warranty.

Let me know Vertech1, if you’d like to know that workaround. I have mentioned it in a couple of my past posts - but haven’t really encouraged it here - because it should work for everyone, not just those who feel comfy with a Linux environment and can fix it on their own.

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And btw, this is basic unsecure ftp we are talking about. Secure FTP (aka SFTP) is not even under consideration, AFAIK.

I have implemented SFTP on my own…  http://community.wd.com/t5/WD-My-Cloud-EX2/SFTP-possible-on-EX2/m-p/715812

I wanted to raise another thread on this because of the lack of interest from WD.  I just dont believe I should have to void my warranty to implement SFTP as per your post. (Which is most helpful) While I certainly could do that, I dont want to have my firmaware frozen at whatever release they have seen fit to make available for compiling, and I definitely dont want to hear that my 500+ dollar NAS doesnt have a warranty because I compiled my own version of the firmware.  As you have pointed out we try not to whine and complain.  I do think we should get a little consideration on this matter from WD though…

BTW - Good to hear from you Cybernut.  IF you get any further info from Tech support please post or send a PM, I’ll do the same so we can stay informed.

Regards,

GH

Oh, I absolutely am glad and certainly don’t mind another thread being opened up. It helps to show that it isn’t just me who’s waiting on this - that there are other customers waiting on a fix too. It’s because most-people are tech-averse and so would rather not use something powerful and simple like FTP/SFTP, that WD has been able to dodge the bullet of the fix so far.

And WD’s L2 tech support when I spoke on the phone told me they get back to me within a “couple days” once they had a chance to verify but I emailed them a few days later and all I got in the reply was that it was sent for re-verification to their engineering. That;s the last I heard from them - this past Monday. I believe it will get fixed…but I suspect it’ll be another few months.

BTW, the simple fix to get the ftp to work will not require anything as drastic as compiling a firmware - just a simple edit to a text file using vi via SSH. The issue really is that the dashboard isn’t saving the external IP in /etc/NAS_CFG/config.xml when changed in the configuration…and if you manually edit that file and reboot the server that file gets re-created, wiping your changes. But the system keeps a more persistent copy of the same config file at /usr/local/config/config.xml - and that’s the one you have to edit.

To get FTP to work, you just have to google your external IP and then edit that file and near the end but not very end (about 85% into the file) you will see a section with the tags. In it, there’s a line for  - just enter your external IP that you lookedup between those tags without any spaces, save the file and reboot. And voila - your FTP will work finally.

An interesting consequence of this change is that ftp will not work internally within the network once you enable that…unlike other more sophisticated ftp server software, like the free Filezilla server, where you provide the external IP and it only uses it if the request is coming from outside the network, this server software isn’t smart enough to do that. So it either works internally (which it does out of the box) or it works from outside (after this change) but not both simultaneously. But I can live with that - because realistically who ever needs to use FTP internally when you can connect to the drive via other means…it’s the outside FTP access that I am really concerned about.

Sure - if I do get any further WD updates that are meaningful, I’ll share them here - at least in my thread if not in this one…but whichever thread it is, it will float to the top of the pile when that happens. But I am not holding my breath :slight_smile:

BTW, obviously the simple fix I posted above only works as long as you have that external IP that you enter in the config.xml file. In my case, my ISP, Verizon FiOS gives me a nearly semi-permanent lease on the IP by default, so it doesn’t change for months (and even years), if I don’t reboot my router.

Quick question, can you make FTP work as a seperate user (not admin) with limited access?

Of course - it is setup to work that way except for that crucial bug. So once WD fixes that or you do the manual fix I suggested, you can create shares for non-admin users and assign permissions as desired…and then just turn on the ftp access on that share (each share detail page in dashboard has an FTP on/off switch). The only thing is if you have USB drrive, then as far as I know, the ftp access is always on…I had requested a similar ftp on/off switch for USB drives in a idea I posted but they implemented another of the ideas but not the idea#3 here -> http://community.wd.com/t5/Network-Product-Ideas/EX2-USB-shares-need-configurable-permissions-configurable-ftp/idi-p/712500 - but do test it out for yourself, if that ftp on/off on usb drive matters to you…I could be wrong about that but there was no response to idea#3 so I assumed they didn’t do anything about it.

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Didnt mean to accept as solution, they may not look at this thread now…

BTW, I would clarify one thing about what I said above - that internal and external ftp cannot function simultaneously. What I meant by that is one won’t be able to use their EX2’s internal IP to connect via ftp, if they get ftp to work externally (after making the manual fix). But they can connect from inside the network via ftp but they’ll have to use the external IP.

But as I said above, realistically almost nobody would need to connect via ftp internally since they can access via network share (CIFS, etc.)

And as for this thread - well, I think WD will still see it - not sure if they’ll choose to comment on it. They haven’t commented on my other thread either. And perhaps you can unmark it as solution from the small dropdown menu at top-right corener of each post(?)