SFTP Servers (SSH File Transfer Protocol, not to be confused with Simple File Transfer Protocol) use a protocol that allows for the transfer of files over a secure SSH connection.
Unlike FTP, which does not encrypt data transfers, SFTP provides the capability to securely transfer data with greater reliability and increased performance.
Such needs could include HIPAA compliant data transfers and secure corporate documents to protect from corporate espionage.
Related Post: Best SCP Server for Windows
Here is our list of the 10 best SFTP Servers for SSH File Transfers:
- Files.com Cloud – FREE TRIAL A secure cloud storage system that acts as a distribution system. Upload files to the system and then mail out links so recipients can access and download each file on demand.
- SolarWinds Free SFTP/SCP Server – FREE TOOL A secure file transfer manager that will run in the background and manage the transfer of files up to 4GB in size. Runs on Windows Server.
- Syncplify.me Server A file transfer manager with encryption and extra security measures that will manage multiple simultaneous transfers. Installs on Windows Server.
- FileZilla A free open source file transfer system that includes FTP, SFTP, and FTPS and runs on Windows, Linux, and macOS.
- zFTPServer Freeware Integrates AD user accounts and manages file transfers with FTP, FTPS, SFTP, TFTP, and HTTPS. Runs on Windows and Windows Server.
- Bitvise SSH/SFTP Server Manages high volumes of file transfers with simultaneous transfers possible. Runs on Windows and Windows Server.
- Cerberus FTP Server 8 A FIPS-validated secure file transfer server that integrates with AD and LDAP and is suitable for HIPAA sites. Installs on Windows and Windows Server.
- Sysax Multi Server A system for managing simultaneous file transfers with FTP, SFTP, FTPS, HTTP, and HTTPS. Runs on Windows systems.
- Rebex Tiny SFTP Server A free, lightweight SFTP server that is suitable for low-volume use. Runs on Windows.
- Core FTP Mini SFTP Server A straightforward secure file transfer server that is HIPAA compliant. Runs on Windows.
In order to use SFTP, a Client application and a Server application is needed to create the connection and facilitate file transfers.
SSH FTP servers are commonly used in conjunction with the Secure Copy Protocol (SCP).
In this article, we will discuss 12 of the Best Free SFTP Servers for Windows that are available for you to download and quickly install and begin using.
Here's the Best SFTP Servers for SSH File Transfers:
Files.com give you a awesome cloud tool that allows your company to have a Branded/Company portal for sending and receiving files over a Secure connection (SFTP, etc).
The Single interface for file transfers gives you the security, flexibility and ease-of-use of enterprise grade solution at an affordable rate.
Features of this Software include:
- Receive or Send files via Email securely and Fully Encrypted – Allow file requests to be sent as well.
- Full Microsoft Office Integration with File/Folder Previews along with Real-time Collaboration for teams and companies.
- Advanced features that all for Automation (perform an action) when Files are Changed/Renamed/Deleted/Uploaded/Downloaded with integrations into popular services including Zapier, Amazon SNS, Webhooks and Microsoft Power Automate!
- Audit Dashboard to view change Logs of File Modifications, additions, etc.
- Synchronize Files/Folders with Popular Cloud Providers including Google, Amazon, Microsoft, BOX, Dropbox, Wasabi, Rackspace, Backblaze and many others.
- Provide Unique Links for File Upload/Download for clients and Customers
- Data Retention Rules for Users, Groups or Folders
- Assign Permissions for Users, Folders or Groups (including Read, Write, Delete & Admin Permissions).
- API and SDK available for developers
- 1 or 2 Way Syncs of Data to other Cloud or Backup Platforms to Data Redundancy
2FA (2-factor authentication) with secures such as Google Authenticator, Duo, Authy, Yubikey, FIDO/U2F and SMS.
Advanced Security features for users and Groups include Policies for the following attributes: Passwords, Sessions, Brute Force Rules & 2FA requirements.
On top of these advanced Security features, Provisioning new users can be completed via Enterprise Identity (SSO). SSO gives you the ability to further authenticate and authorize users via LDP, Active Directory, Azure, ADFS, OneLogin, Auth0 and Okta along with many other identity providers.
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Supporting files of up to 4GB, it allows you to transfer large files such firmware and the latest iOS over your network.
Multi-thread capabilities allow for concurrent upload and download of files from multiple network devices.
SolarWinds has advanced security settings that give you control over how you transfer files using the most secure methods, along with allowing you to specify specific IP addresses and address ranges for transfers.
Since it runs as a service, it provides SFTP/SCP server availability in the background at all times.
It is compatible with the latest 64 bit operating systems.
A powerful, yet easy to use piece of software, SolarWinds Free SFTP/SCP Server is a must-have.
Download it FREE and Install it within 2 Mins.
3. Syncplify.me Server
This full-featured SFTP server boasts many capabilities, which meet the needs of even the most security-conscious users out there.
It fully supports Active Directory users and groups, and comes configured to prevent itself against attacks such as DoS, DDoS, password harvesting, and more.
It supports transferring multiple files simultaneously and includes support for clustered remote configuration databases and Distributed File System environments.
This open source software provides capabilities to transfer files via SFTP among other secure and non-secure methods, including FTPS and FTP.
FileZilla supports file transfer sizes of up to 4GB, and lets you pause and resume traffic when needed.
Drag-and-drop support, remote file editing, and remote file search make it simple and easy to use without compromising security.
File-name filters and directory comparisons come standard, allowing you to ensure that the files you need transported and stored are accurate and up-to-date.
Its simple user interface operates on Windows, Linux, OS X, and more. And since it is a very popular open-source application, bugs and other issues are quickly found and fixed by developers around the world.
5. zFTPServer Freeware
zFTPServer is a full-featured and robust application designed for the most intensive corporate enterprise needs.
Using the most up-do-date security and encryption protocol, zFTPServer provides speed scheduling, automatic updates, and high-speed data transfers.
It also provides Active Directory user login support and IPv6 capability.
You can let it run automatically in the background as a system service, or bring it up in application mode, depending on whatever your need is at the time.
It uses threading and careful memory allocation and de-allocation to minimize its resource usage, and its real-time logging of events and messages is a valuable feature for system administrators. zFTPServer runs on all the latest Windows Server and PC operating systems.
The free version allows up to five accounts and three simultaneous connections, with the ability to upgrade at very reasonable prices.
6. Bitvise SSH/SFTP Server
Bitvise SFTP & SSH Server is a light-weight, powerful, multipurpose application designed to provide secure SSH features and SFTP capabilities.
With Bitvise, SFTP can provide some of the fastest file transfer speeds possible – hundreds of MB/s can be obtained depending on the SFTP client.
It supports an unlimited number of user connections; the number and speeds of simultaneous connections are only limited by the host hardware resources.
Bitvise server supports virtual accounts and uses FIPS-certified DLL version of Crypto++ 5.3.0 for the most up-to-date and secure encrypted connections.
It is compatible with all major SFTP clients. With its simple installation and setup procedures and many capabilities, Bitvise is the ultimate in SFTP server solutions.
7. Cerberus FTP Server 8
This robust and feature-laden software provides SFTP transfer capabilities along with other secure file transfer protocols, including FTP/S and HTTPS.
Cerberus supports Active Directory and LDAP needs and is FIPS 140-2 validated for the most secure file transfer needs.
It is HIPAA compliant, meaning it is able to transfer even the most confidential patient information safely and securely.
This application allows for Ad Hoc file transfers and file integrity checking and its IP auto-banning features add an extra layer of security.
Cerberus FTP/SFTP Server 8 is compatible with Windows Server 2003 and up and Windows 7 and up, and is free for personal use after the trial period is up.
A must for any security-conscious operation.
8. Sysax Multi Server
Along with SFTP, Sysax Multi Server supports several simultaneous remote access and file transfer protocols, such as FTP, FTPS, Telnet, and Secure Shell.
It also supports HTTP and HTTPS web-based file transfers.
Its simplified user account administration allows administrators to use Windows authentication for existing Windows users on the network, or they can create custom user accounts within the software.
Sysax Multi Server allows for remote management via any web browser, and when using locally, you can use its own administration panel or the Windows Management Console.
For more advanced security, it supports public key authentication, SSL certificate generation, and IP restriction.
The corporate edition allows for unlimited simultaneous client connections.
A powerful and simple to use application, Sysax Multi Server is perfect for any SFTP server need.
9. Rebex Tiny SFTP Server
This small, minimalist SFTP server was designed for testing SFTP clients.
This simple little application requires no installation or setup, and is perfect for the small jobs where a full-fledged server is unneeded or unreasonable, or when you need to test your SFTP client app and do not need to waste the time setting up a more complex server that you may rarely use.
It supports a single user and provides detailed activity logs.
Rebex Tiny supports DSA and RSA keys and is free for both personal and commercial uses.
It is compatible with any modern Windows version with .NET 4.0. A simple but useful application, Rebext Tiny SFTP Server is invaluable in any small-time application.
10. Core FTP Mini SFTP Server
This very simple standalone SFTP server allows for quick transfer of secure files between computers across any network.
It provides the standard file transfer capabilities, all secured with the SSH encryption protocols.
Simple, yet effective, it is perfect for the quick jobs where a full-fledged server download and setup is not practical.
Another lightweight and simple free SFTP server. It is simple to set up and easy to run, and lets you get a secure file transfer server going in just a couple minutes.
freeFTPd supports SFTP, FTPS as well as its non-secure cousin, FTP, and lets you transfer files securely while consuming very little system resources.
CompleteFTP is a Windows SFTP server supporting secure file-transfer via FTP, FTPS, SFTP, HTTP, HTTPS and SCP.
CompleteFTP has four editions, starting with the Free Edition, which, as the name implies, is completely free for an unlimited time.
It has no limits on the number of users, transfers or anything else, and the feature-set more or less matches that of FileZilla Server.
CompleteFTP scales from the tiniest hobby installation to the largest corporate cluster with an addition three paid editions offering many more features.