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Can I avoid being limited by IIS's ten-connection ceiling if I transfer files through sockets? I'm using Windows XP.

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I don't see why that would work, but I am not sure. – soandos Aug 16 '11 at 15:02
If this is the TCP connections limit see this – Moab Aug 16 '11 at 15:20
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Technically the answer is yes, but, you will not be using IIS if that is the case.

As I said at your previous question, you can use Apache Web Server or Filezilla FTP Server if you want to transfer files.

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+1 for suggesting some excellent open source solutions (although they are definitely capable of handling thousands of connections, they'll still be limited by the restrictions being imposed by Windows). – Randolf Richardson Aug 19 '11 at 14:03

No, you can't avoid the concurrent connection limit (unless you're willing to patch TCPIP.SYS, which is not officially supported by Microsoft) because Windows XP is limited to 10 simultaneous inbound connections by design:

  Run IIS 5.0 and IIS 5.1 Instead of PWS on Windows 2000 Professional

IIS on Windows 2000 Professional or Windows XP Professional has the following limitations:

  • Limited to 10 connections
  • Limited to one Web and one FTP server. In other words, you cannot create additional virtual Web or FTP servers.

There are ways around this that work, but these are not officially supported by Microsoft as they involve modifying Microsoft's TCPIP.SYS file (where this concurrent connection limit is imposed), and if TCPIP.SYS gets updated in the future you'll have to figure out how to patch the new TCPIP.SYS file (or wait until one of those third party patching programmers figures it out).

The better solution is to use an OS that is more capable by design. I've heard that Windows Server 2003 might not have this limitation (but I've not confirmed this), and I know for a fact that Unix and Linux are definitely capable (I use NetBSD to support web sites that regularly get hundreds of concurrent connections without any trouble).

A few notes about alternative solutions

If you know that your web site will be very busy, I highly recommend you consider a proven technology like Apache HTTPd (as @William Hilsum smartly suggested, which is available for Windows, Unix, Linux, and most other Operating Systems).

For FTP, on the Windows OS the FileZilla solution is excellent (as @William Hilsum also suggested), and in the Unix/Linux environments there are many other options that might fit better (I particularly like ProFTPd because its configuration file format is just like Apache HTTPd's excellent configuration file format).

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+1 as you gave me +1 and your answer is good... but... I just want to say incase it doesn't come across... IIS is brilliant and scalable, (I prefer it to Apache), it is only the Workstation versions that have limits on connections ( / This website and lots of other large ones all run on IIS).... As for TCPIP.SYS, I am not 100% sure that is where the limit is... TCPIP.SYS after (I think) XP SP1 was modified to limit TCPIP Flooding issues (where patches got around this), but, this was unrelated to IIS restrictions which are a continuation of PWS restrictions from Windows 98. – William Hilsum Aug 19 '11 at 14:30

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