Ask Ubuntu is a question and answer site for Ubuntu users and developers. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I have two computers in my home network linked with a router with each other, I use to transfer small files using sftp but the transfer rate is very slow.

Now I want to move around 100GB of data from my laptop to the other computer in network. What would be the ideal way of transferring the data in a reasonably fast speed compared to sftp?

share|improve this question
You might find this question over on server fault has some interesting links – Phil Apr 12 '11 at 23:33
up vote 0 down vote accepted

for larger file transfers i use rsync as that is very handy if something happens on the network, or one of users says - hell, i am going to reboot.

If transfer security is required, use rsync with ssh. searching for rsync over ssh should yield usable how-tos with explanations.

Other easy way is to install sshd (opensshd-server) and use sftp for transfers (along with scp)

share|improve this answer

I've found that rsync is pretty fast. You can set up NFS or SAMBA on both machines and rsync everything over.

If NFS and SAMBA aren't your thing skip the encryption and install vsftpd on the target machine and FTP away. vsftpd is very fast.

share|improve this answer
Wait, do you suggest to use rsync over NFS or Samba? This doesn't make much sense, the native rsync protocol is going to be much faster. – Adam Byrtek Apr 12 '11 at 22:18
Indeed, rsync runs best using its native protocol over ssh – psusi Apr 13 '11 at 3:30
Ok, ok. I've never used the native rsync protocol since I've always had NFS or Samba running anyway. – WebWeasel Apr 13 '11 at 16:53

Is this a one time action or something you'll be doing ongoing?

Transferring lots of small files tends to be inefficient, so it would help if you could tar them up prior to transfer. Also, if your network link is secure (e.g. it's wired with only trusted systems on it), you can gain speed by just doing bare FTP.

If you have lots of data that you need to keep regularly in sync that only partially updates, rsync is optimized for this case.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.