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I have 2 windows machines and a server.

1 is my laptop, the other is a workstation that the IP of which is white-listed on the server. The laptop has a dynamic IP, so the IP cannot be white-listed.

I would like to be able to perform FTP transfers from my laptop to the server, while using the workstation as a proxy.

Both machines are using Windows 7.


Andy describes my setup a lot better than me:

OK so let me check I understand the setup. You have a laptop connected to the internet with a dynamic IP. You have a workstation that's permanently connected to the internet with a static IP. You have control of these two machines. There's a server you don't have control over that won't let you do a file copy from an arbitrary IP address, but will allow it from your workstation's IP. Is that about right?


Is this possible? Help would be amazing!

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Are all the machines on your LAN? –  Andy Jun 15 '10 at 14:55
    
@Andy: machines are not in LAN –  RadiantHex Jun 15 '10 at 15:43
1  
OK so let me check I understand the setup. You have a laptop connected to the internet with a dynamic IP. You have a workstation that's permanently connected to the internet with a static IP. You have control of these two machines. There's a server you don't have control over that won't let you do a file copy from an arbitrary IP address, but will allow it from your workstation's IP. Is that about right? –  Andy Jun 15 '10 at 15:54
    
@Andy: Yes! That is perfectly it! thank you so much for your interest!! –  RadiantHex Jun 16 '10 at 10:03

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

You can use the workstation as a proxy. If all you want to do is transfer files between your laptop and the server I'd try to find another way to do this. If you use the workstation as a proxy then

  1. you have to set it up (a bit complicated).
  2. you have to maintain it (something will stop working;).
  3. unless you're very careful, you may leave your workstation (and potentially the server) vulnerable to exploits.
  4. you won't get optimal routing of traffic from your laptop to the server.
  5. you're unnecessarily using your workstation's bandwidth.
  6. even if you've set everything up perfectly, and you have access to the web server, the IP address whitelist hasn't really guaranteed you anything security-wise because FTP is an inherently unsafe protocol.

So I'd really try to go for another solution. What you really want IMHO is something with encryption and authentication. Is there any chance you could use a secure file transfer protocol? Choices include

  • SCP
  • SFTP
  • Secure FTP
  • FTPS

These would pretty much just work, give you security, and not use your workstation. Can you give more details about the server? What are you allowed to do on it? Do you have SSH access? Can you contact its admin?

Using your workstation as a proxy

I don't know if Win7 has a proxy service built-in that you can use. My experience with Windows leads me to think that it would only be available with server editions (MS gotta make money somehow;) as it's really a server task. You can use a free piece of software such as Squid. I understand it supports authentication and encryption. Quick search reveals Freeproxy which might also work; there are others out there too.

There was a Lifehacker story that talked about installing a web-based proxy on a home web-server. That might be easier to set up but a) it might only be for HTTP, and b) more importantly you have to set up a web serving environment securely.

HTH

Andy

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from what I understand they do want to transfer file from the laptop to the server via the desktop...I am thinking FTP may be over kill if they setup a VPN insted? –  mjrider Jun 16 '10 at 12:47
    
sorry, not quite with you...? –  Andy Jun 16 '10 at 13:29

I think you might have better luck using a VPN instead of a proxy.

I would use a product like Logmein's hamachi to create a Virtual Private Network...then you should be able to FTP over the "lan" https://secure.logmein.com/products/hamachi2/

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