I'm putting together a VPS to host a game server for me and a few friends that is running Ubuntu 16.04 server edition. Right now I'm trying to configure VSFTPD to allow us to upload any files we need to the game directory and this is where I'm running into issues. I created a user named "steam" and installed the steamcmd and game into its home directory (which is all I need access to). I can connect via FTP and log in as "steam" and upload files but when I connect to the server via SSH and log in as "steam" locally my local account doesn't have access to any of the files I've uploaded. Unfortunately this is my first server I've ever tried to configure so I'm having trouble wading through all this. I've tried googling but either the problem doesn't match or it talks about something I don't understand. The closest I've come to a solution is:

Q) Help! Uploaded files are appearing with permissions -rw-------.

A1) Depending on if this is an upload by a local user or an anonymous user, use "local_umask" or "anon_umask" to change this. For example, use "anon_umask=022" to give anonymously uploaded files permissions -rw-r--r--. Note that the "0" before the "22" is important.

A2) Also see the vsftpd.conf.5 man page for the new "file_open_mode" parameter.

but I don't understand what I need to change. There is no VSFTPD.conf.5 anywhere I know. I included my conf file. All I want to do is be able to log into FTP as my local account so me and my friends can upload mission files but I don't want that account to have root access so they can't break the server.

# 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
# capabilities.
# Run standalone?  vsftpd can run either from an inetd or as a standalone
# daemon started from an initscript.
# 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
# files.
# 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.
# 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
# option.
# Activate logging of uploads/downloads.
# Make sure PORT transfer connections originate from port 20 (ftp-data).
# 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
# recommended!
# You may override where the log file goes if you like. The default is shown
# below.
# 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.
# You may fully customise the login banner string:
#ftpd_banner=Welcome to blah FTP service.
# 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
# chroot)
# (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.
# Customization
# Some of vsftpd's settings don't fit the filesystem layout by
# default.
# 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
# access.
# 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.

# Uncomment this to indicate that vsftpd use a utf8 filesystem.

1 Answer 1


In your /etc/vsftpd.conf file, you need to uncomment the line:


I.e. remove the hash form the beginning of the line and change the mask value to 033, so that it looks like:


After restarting the service, uploaded files will be readable by all other users of the system.

This will not affect the files already uploaded. You can fix the permissions for these files by executing once:

sudo chmod 644 <your_files>

There is no VSFTPD.conf.5 anywhere

You need to type:

man vsftpd.conf

It will display the manual page for the config file format.

The 5 in the request indicates section 5 of the system manual pages "File formats and conventions for files used by Unix", but you don't need to type it in this case.

I can connect via FTP and log in as "steam" and upload files but when I connect to the server via SSH and log in as "steam" locally my local account doesn't have access to any of the files I've uploaded.

This is the most confusing part. If the account is the same, by default you should have full permissions to the files.

You can create a new empty file in the directory and compare the ownership for example with:

cd <upload_directory>
touch empty_file
ls -l empty_file <uploaded_file>

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