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sftp — secure file transfer program
sftp [-46aCfpqrv] [-B buffer_size] [-b batchfile] [-c cipher] [-D sftp_server_path] [-F ssh_config] [-i identity_file] [-l limit] [-o ssh_option] [-P port] [-R num_requests] [-S program] [-s subsystem | sftp_server] destination
sftp is a file transfer program, similar to ftp(1), which performs all operations over an encrypted ssh(1) transport. It may also use many features of ssh, such as public key authentication and compression. The destination may be specified either as [user@]host[:path] or as a URI in the form sftp://[user@]host[:port][/path]. If the destination includes a path and it is not a directory, sftp will retrieve files automatically if a non-interactive authentication method is used; otherwise it will do so after successful interactive authentication. If no path is specified, or if the path is a directory, sftp will log in to the specified host and enter interactive command mode, changing to the remote directory if one was specified. An optional trailing slash can be used to force the path to be interpreted as a directory. Since the destination formats use colon characters to delimit host names from path names or port numbers, IPv6 addresses must be enclosed in square brackets to avoid ambiguity. The options are as follows: -4 Forces sftp to use IPv4 addresses only. -6 Forces sftp to use IPv6 addresses only. -a Attempt to continue interrupted transfers rather than overwriting existing partial or complete copies of files. If the partial contents differ from those being transferred, then the resultant file is likely to be corrupt. -B buffer_size Specify the size of the buffer that sftp uses when transferring files. Larger buffers require fewer round trips at the cost of higher memory consumption. The default is 32768 bytes. -b batchfile Batch mode reads a series of commands from an input batchfile instead of stdin. Since it lacks user interaction it should be used in conjunction with non- interactive authentication to obviate the need to enter a password at connection time (see sshd(8) and ssh-keygen(1) for details). A batchfile of ‘-’ may be used to indicate standard input. sftp will abort if any of the following commands fail: get, put, reget, reput, rename, ln, rm, mkdir, chdir, ls, lchdir, chmod, chown, chgrp, lpwd, df, symlink, and lmkdir. Termination on error can be suppressed on a command by command basis by prefixing the command with a ‘-’ character (for example, -rm /tmp/blah*). -C Enables compression (via ssh's -C flag). -c cipher Selects the cipher to use for encrypting the data transfers. This option is directly passed to ssh(1). -D sftp_server_path Connect directly to a local sftp server (rather than via ssh(1)). This option may be useful in debugging the client and server. -F ssh_config Specifies an alternative per-user configuration file for ssh(1). This option is directly passed to ssh(1). -f Requests that files be flushed to disk immediately after transfer. When uploading files, this feature is only enabled if the server implements the "email@example.com" extension. -i identity_file Selects the file from which the identity (private key) for public key authentication is read. This option is directly passed to ssh(1). -l limit Limits the used bandwidth, specified in Kbit/s. -o ssh_option Can be used to pass options to ssh in the format used in ssh_config(5). This is useful for specifying options for which there is no separate sftp command-line flag. For example, to specify an alternate port use: sftp -oPort=24. For full details of the options listed below, and their possible values, see ssh_config(5). AddressFamily BatchMode BindAddress BindInterface CanonicalDomains CanonicalizeFallbackLocal CanonicalizeHostname CanonicalizeMaxDots CanonicalizePermittedCNAMEs CASignatureAlgorithms CertificateFile ChallengeResponseAuthentication CheckHostIP Ciphers Compression ConnectionAttempts ConnectTimeout ControlMaster ControlPath ControlPersist GlobalKnownHostsFile GSSAPIAuthentication GSSAPIDelegateCredentials HashKnownHosts Host HostbasedAuthentication HostbasedKeyTypes HostKeyAlgorithms HostKeyAlias HostName IdentitiesOnly IdentityAgent IdentityFile IPQoS KbdInteractiveAuthentication KbdInteractiveDevices KexAlgorithms LogLevel MACs NoHostAuthenticationForLocalhost NumberOfPasswordPrompts PasswordAuthentication PKCS11Provider Port PreferredAuthentications ProxyCommand ProxyJump PubkeyAcceptedKeyTypes PubkeyAuthentication RekeyLimit SendEnv ServerAliveInterval ServerAliveCountMax SetEnv StrictHostKeyChecking TCPKeepAlive UpdateHostKeys User UserKnownHostsFile VerifyHostKeyDNS -P port Specifies the port to connect to on the remote host. -p Preserves modification times, access times, and modes from the original files transferred. -q Quiet mode: disables the progress meter as well as warning and diagnostic messages from ssh(1). -R num_requests Specify how many requests may be outstanding at any one time. Increasing this may slightly improve file transfer speed but will increase memory usage. The default is 64 outstanding requests. -r Recursively copy entire directories when uploading and downloading. Note that sftp does not follow symbolic links encountered in the tree traversal. -S program Name of the program to use for the encrypted connection. The program must understand ssh(1) options. -s subsystem | sftp_server Specifies the SSH2 subsystem or the path for an sftp server on the remote host. A path is useful when the remote sshd(8) does not have an sftp subsystem configured. -v Raise logging level. This option is also passed to ssh.
Once in interactive mode, sftp understands a set of commands similar to those of ftp(1). Commands are case insensitive. Pathnames that contain spaces must be enclosed in quotes. Any special characters contained within pathnames that are recognized by glob(3) must be escaped with backslashes (‘\’). bye Quit sftp. cd [path] Change remote directory to path. If path is not specified, then change directory to the one the session started in. chgrp grp path Change group of file path to grp. path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. grp must be a numeric GID. chmod mode path Change permissions of file path to mode. path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. chown own path Change owner of file path to own. path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. own must be a numeric UID. df [-hi] [path] Display usage information for the filesystem holding the current directory (or path if specified). If the -h flag is specified, the capacity information will be displayed using "human-readable" suffixes. The -i flag requests display of inode information in addition to capacity information. This command is only supported on servers that implement the “firstname.lastname@example.org” extension. exit Quit sftp. get [-afPpr] remote-path [local-path] Retrieve the remote-path and store it on the local machine. If the local path name is not specified, it is given the same name it has on the remote machine. remote-path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. If it does and local-path is specified, then local-path must specify a directory. If the -a flag is specified, then attempt to resume partial transfers of existing files. Note that resumption assumes that any partial copy of the local file matches the remote copy. If the remote file contents differ from the partial local copy then the resultant file is likely to be corrupt. If the -f flag is specified, then fsync(2) will be called after the file transfer has completed to flush the file to disk. If either the -P or -p flag is specified, then full file permissions and access times are copied too. If the -r flag is specified then directories will be copied recursively. Note that sftp does not follow symbolic links when performing recursive transfers. help Display help text. lcd [path] Change local directory to path. If path is not specified, then change directory to the local user's home directory. lls [ls-options [path]] Display local directory listing of either path or current directory if path is not specified. ls-options may contain any flags supported by the local system's ls(1) command. path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. lmkdir path Create local directory specified by path. ln [-s] oldpath newpath Create a link from oldpath to newpath. If the -s flag is specified the created link is a symbolic link, otherwise it is a hard link. lpwd Print local working directory. ls [-1afhlnrSt] [path] Display a remote directory listing of either path or the current directory if path is not specified. path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. The following flags are recognized and alter the behaviour of ls accordingly: -1 Produce single columnar output. -a List files beginning with a dot (‘.’). -f Do not sort the listing. The default sort order is lexicographical. -h When used with a long format option, use unit suffixes: Byte, Kilobyte, Megabyte, Gigabyte, Terabyte, Petabyte, and Exabyte in order to reduce the number of digits to four or fewer using powers of 2 for sizes (K=1024, M=1048576, etc.). -l Display additional details including permissions and ownership information. -n Produce a long listing with user and group information presented numerically. -r Reverse the sort order of the listing. -S Sort the listing by file size. -t Sort the listing by last modification time. lumask umask Set local umask to umask. mkdir path Create remote directory specified by path. progress Toggle display of progress meter. put [-afPpr] local-path [remote-path] Upload local-path and store it on the remote machine. If the remote path name is not specified, it is given the same name it has on the local machine. local-path may contain glob(7) characters and may match multiple files. If it does and remote-path is specified, then remote-path must specify a directory. If the -a flag is specified, then attempt to resume partial transfers of existing files. Note that resumption assumes that any partial copy of the remote file matches the local copy. If the local file contents differ from the remote local copy then the resultant file is likely to be corrupt. If the -f flag is specified, then a request will be sent to the server to call fsync(2) after the file has been transferred. Note that this is only supported by servers that implement the "email@example.com" extension. If either the -P or -p flag is specified, then full file permissions and access times are copied too. If the -r flag is specified then directories will be copied recursively. Note that sftp does not follow symbolic links when performing recursive transfers. pwd Display remote working directory. quit Quit sftp. reget [-Ppr] remote-path [local-path] Resume download of remote-path. Equivalent to get with the -a flag set. reput [-Ppr] [local-path] remote-path Resume upload of [local-path]. Equivalent to put with the -a flag set. rename oldpath newpath Rename remote file from oldpath to newpath. rm path Delete remote file specified by path. rmdir path Remove remote directory specified by path. symlink oldpath newpath Create a symbolic link from oldpath to newpath. version Display the sftp protocol version. !command Execute command in local shell. ! Escape to local shell. ? Synonym for help.
ftp(1), ls(1), scp(1), ssh(1), ssh-add(1), ssh-keygen(1), ssh_config(5), glob(7), sftp-server(8), sshd(8) T. Ylonen and S. Lehtinen, SSH File Transfer Protocol, draft-ietf-secsh-filexfer-00.txt, January 2001, work in progress material.