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How To : FTPS Server Configuration in Linux

I astonish all the time when I see the FTP package name. vsftpd which abbreviated to Very Secure File Transfer Demon(vsftpd). But when we see the security prospective of this package there is no much security included with this package. I mean when you login to server the credentials are transferred in plain text. This is the reason by default root user is not allowed to login to ftp server. To eliminate transferring data/user credentials in plain text and to encrypt the entire transmission we can take help from openssl to generate a certificate and use SSL certificate when communicating with FTP server. This is nothing but a FTPS(FTP+SSL cert) server. Some file transfers you should know are.

1. TFTP(Trivial File Transfer Protocol which uses UDP for transmission) ???high data rates/not secure
2. SFTP (This protocol uses SSH in back-end, so you need to run an FTP server) ???secure
3. FTP (This is normal ftp transfer which uses TCP) ???not secure

4. FTPS(FTP+SSL certificate to encrypt data transmission) -secure

5. FTP Over SSH(this is a kind of ftp tunnel on SSH protocol) -secure

In this post we will see how we can configure SSL certificate for VSFTPD to make it secure.

Step 1: Check the following packages on the server and if they are not install please install them.
#yum install openssl
#yum install vsftpd
Step 2: Generate rsa key in /etc/vsftpd folder as shown below.

#cd /etc/vsftpd
#/usr/bin/openssl req -x509 -nodes -days 365 -newkey rsa:1024 -keyout vsftpd.pem -out vsftpd.pem
The clipped output for your reference
[[email protected] vsftpd]# /usr/bin/openssl req -x509 -nodes -days 365 -newkey rsa:1024 -keyout vsftpd.pem -out vsftpd.pem
Generating a 1024 bit RSA private key
…………………………………………….++++++
……………………………………++++++
writing new private key to ‘vsftpd.pem’
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You are now asked to enter information that will be incorporated into your certificate request. What you are about to enter is called as Distinguished Name or a DN. There are many fields but you can leave some blank. For some fields there will be a default value, If you enter ???.???, the field will be left blank.
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