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currently, I am hosting a webdav share setup in order to store files I need anywhere I am. It is available via HTTPS.

Things are that I do not need all the HTTP machinery -i.e. my nginx http server is only there for this webdav folder.

I am not sure I made the best choice. My requirements on the client side are:

  • secured transfers
  • mountable as a network drive at work with 'near realtime sync'
  • usable for any OS I could use (including my mobile (android))

At first, I chose webdav since it would pass through my work proxy (which refuses all that is not on HTTP/S (port 80 or 443)).

Today, I am not satisfied with the setup and even if nginx memory footprint is pretty small, its webdav support is not really "clean" and full.

What would you recommend between SFTP, SCP and the current webdav solution ? I think SFTP is the closest solution but I still have to find out how to pass through my proxy ;) SCP seems quite limited as I read about it (only file transfers if I read right).


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How much data are you talking about? An explanation why dropbox or skydrive is not enough would help. – Nifle May 27 '10 at 22:25
FYI, both SFTP and SCP go over the same port, as they both use the SSH protocol as a transport. (You may be confusing it with FTPS, which is regular FTP over SSL.) – grawity May 28 '10 at 8:11
@grawity Hum SCP is not SFTP. I am not confusing at all. See @nifle I want my data at home and not let someone manage it for me. – Xavier Maillard May 28 '10 at 20:31
up vote 1 down vote accepted

SFTP is fine, it's easy to setup and there aren't any huge holes in it at the moment. It's available on pretty much every system (including android 2.1 and higher with the right FTP client).

SFTP is pretty common now, so it's also less likely to be blocked.

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Sadly, I am sure SFTP will be blocked by my work proxy. Everything not on "HTTP" ports is blocked. – Xavier Maillard May 28 '10 at 5:55
@Xavier: Then run SSH on a "HTTP port". – grawity May 28 '10 at 8:12
SFTP can be run on any port you want, it will be able to do this because the FTP client and server determine the type of connection by the protocol, not the port type. Now if your ISP won't allow you to run any services exposed to the world on HTTP ports than that's going to be a problem for any service you want to expose. I just wanted to let you know that there is no reason why you couldn't run SFTP over port 80. – Daisetsu May 28 '10 at 16:33
and @grawity yeah. This is what I did :D – Xavier Maillard May 28 '10 at 20:32
Did you notice any problems with performance? Specifically since SFTP is very slow with many files, while webdav is a lot faster on that regard. Or maybe you only handle few files? – t.mikael.d Aug 15 '12 at 6:40

Try installing OwnCloud utilizing SSL/TLS it actually uses WebDAV and complies with all your requirements.

OwnCloud (stylized ownCloud) is a suite of client-server software for creating file hosting services and using them. OwnCloud is functionally very similar to the widely used Dropbox, with the primary functional difference being that OwnCloud is free and open-source, and thereby allows anyone to install and operate it without charge on a private server, with no limits on storage space (except for disk capacity or account quota) or the number of connected clients.

OwnCloud should be configured to use SSL/TLS encryption

It has got neat clients for Android, OS X, Windows and Linux.

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Hi lukaz, welcome to Super User. Can you expand your answer a bit to describe what OwnCloud is and why it meets the requirements laid out in the question? Link-only answers are discouraged. – bertieb Aug 26 '15 at 11:56

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