VSFTPD issue - Full permissions

Hello, I am running a small droplet on 20.04 with vsfptd.

I have created a user in the sudo group hoping I will be able to move files into different folders from my remote pc to the droplet and vice versa, as all as other activities (i.e. delete, rename, etc).

I have configured vsftpd with what I believe to be the correct settings (config file below), along with the name of my user on a vsftpd.chroot_list to allow access to all folders.

I have TLS set up as well so the user can log in securely. so this user can log in and navigate all of the folders in the droplet no problem.

My problem is this. From his /home folder the user can do what they want, add, rename, delete, etc… from anywhere else he gets the dreaded 550 permission denied.

Essentially I want to give this particular user full access to all of the files and folders in my droplet (essentially, root).

Am I missing something here? Maybe I am missing an setting in the config file?

Detail of the config file for vsftpd are below. Thanks Gene

Example config file /etc/vsftpd.conf

The default compiled in settings are fairly paranoid. This sample file

loosens things up a bit, to make the ftp daemon more usable.

Please see vsftpd.conf.5 for all compiled in defaults.

READ THIS: This example file is NOT an exhaustive list of vsftpd options.

Please read the vsftpd.conf.5 manual page to get a full idea of vsftpd’s


Run standalone? vsftpd can run either from an inetd or as a standalone

daemon started from an initscript.

listen=NO #connect_from_port_20=YES

This directive enables listening on IPv6 sockets. By default, listening

on the IPv6 “any” address (::) will accept connections from both IPv6

and IPv4 clients. It is not necessary to listen on both IPv4 and IPv6

sockets. If you want that (perhaps because you want to listen on specific

addresses) then you must run two copies of vsftpd with two configuration



Allow anonymous FTP? (Disabled by default).


Uncomment this to allow local users to log in.


Uncomment this to enable any form of FTP write command.


Default umask for local users is 077. You may wish to change this to 022,

if your users expect that (022 is used by most other ftpd’s)


Uncomment this to allow the anonymous FTP user to upload files. This only

has an effect if the above global write enable is activated. Also, you will

obviously need to create a directory writable by the FTP user.


Uncomment this if you want the anonymous FTP user to be able to create

new directories.

#anon_mkdir_write_enable=NO #anon_other_write_enable=NO #local_root=/

Activate directory messages - messages given to remote users when they

go into a certain directory.


If enabled, vsftpd will display directory listings with the time

in your local time zone. The default is to display GMT. The

times returned by the MDTM FTP command are also affected by this



Activate logging of uploads/downloads.

xferlog_enable=YES force_dot_files=YES

Make sure PORT transfer connections originate from port 20 (ftp-data).

connect_from_port_20=YES pasv_enable=YES pasv_min_port=40000 pasv_max_port=40010

If you want, you can arrange for uploaded anonymous files to be owned by

a different user. Note! Using “root” for uploaded files is not


#chown_uploads=YES #chown_username=whoever

You may override where the log file goes if you like. The default is shown



If you want, you can have your log file in standard ftpd xferlog format.

Note that the default log file location is /var/log/xferlog in this case.


You may change the default value for timing out an idle session.


You may change the default value for timing out a data connection.


It is recommended that you define on your system a unique user which the

ftp server can use as a totally isolated and unprivileged user.


Enable this and the server will recognise asynchronous ABOR requests. Not

recommended for security (the code is non-trivial). Not enabling it,

however, may confuse older FTP clients.


By default the server will pretend to allow ASCII mode but in fact ignore

the request. Turn on the below options to have the server actually do ASCII

mangling on files when in ASCII mode.

Beware that on some FTP servers, ASCII support allows a denial of service

attack (DoS) via the command “SIZE /big/file” in ASCII mode. vsftpd

predicted this attack and has always been safe, reporting the size of the

raw file.

ASCII mangling is a horrible feature of the protocol.

#ascii_upload_enable=YES #ascii_download_enable=YES

You may fully customise the login banner string:

ftpd_banner=Welcome to DRRG Chat Server FTP Portal.

You may specify a file of disallowed anonymous e-mail addresses. Apparently

useful for combatting certain DoS attacks.


(default follows)


You may restrict local users to their home directories. See the FAQ for

the possible risks in this before using chroot_local_user or

chroot_list_enable below.


You may specify an explicit list of local users to chroot() to their home

directory. If chroot_local_user is YES, then this list becomes a list of

users to NOT chroot().

(Warning! chroot’ing can be very dangerous. If using chroot, make sure that

the user does not have write access to the top level directory within the


allow_writeable_chroot=YES chroot_local_user=YES chroot_list_enable=YES

(default follows)


You may activate the “-R” option to the builtin ls. This is disabled by

default to avoid remote users being able to cause excessive I/O on large

sites. However, some broken FTP clients such as “ncftp” and “mirror” assume

the presence of the “-R” option, so there is a strong case for enabling it.



Some of vsftpd’s settings don’t fit the filesystem layout by


This option should be the name of a directory which is empty. Also, the

directory should not be writable by the ftp user. This directory is used

as a secure chroot() jail at times vsftpd does not require filesystem



This string is the name of the PAM service vsftpd will use.


This option specifies the location of the RSA certificate to use for SSL

encrypted connections.

#rsa_cert_file=/etc/ssl/certs/ssl-cert-snakeoil.pem #rsa_private_key_file=/etc/ssl/private/ssl-cert-snakeoil.key rsa_cert_file=/etc/ssl/private/vsftpd.pem rsa_private_key_file=/etc/ssl/private/vsftpd.pem ssl_enable=YES allow_anon_ssl=NO force_local_data_ssl=YES force_local_logins_ssl=YES ssl_tlsv1=YES ssl_sslv2=NO ssl_sslv3=NO require_ssl_reuse=NO ssl_ciphers=HIGH

Uncomment this to indicate that vsftpd use a utf8 filesystem.



Apologies, the dump of the conf file looks horrible. I believe I have added all of the appropriate underscores where needed… Let me know if there’s a better way to share the detail.

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OK It looks like problem is solved. The user I was using was had SU rights, but it needed to be a root user ‘x:0:0’ and part of the root group. I made these changes and presto!

This give that user full unfettered rights across the whole box, which suits my purpose. Now, this is not the right route for all users, but it suits me for what I need to do on this droplet.