Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm on mac osx getting a file from a remote server. I run the following command:

scp remoteusername@remotehostip:/home/username/file.tar ./Users/localusername/Documents/specialdir

I get the response

scp: /home/username/file.tar: no such file or directory

However when I ssh into the remote host and run

cd /home/username

file.tar is displayed. I have full read/write permissions for the directory/files. This is run in a new terminal (ie I am not already logged in via ssh to the remote host) What am I doing wrong?


I worked around it using the * wildcard..although I'm still not sure what the root issue is/was.

share|improve this question
You point that you use remoteusername to connect and then trying to get file from directory /home/username. Is it the same user or different users? – Serge Oct 16 '12 at 20:32
Are you logging in as the same user that you're SCPing with? – Paul Calabro Oct 16 '12 at 20:35
@Serge yes it's the same user. – Morgoroth Oct 16 '12 at 20:35
did you try this: scp remoteusername@remotehostip:file.tar ./Users/localusername/Documents/specialdir ? – Serge Oct 16 '12 at 20:40
Any interesting chars in the filename? (I am thinking of things like *'s which need to be escaped with \*. Or an ampersand? Does the user have read rights on the directory? (I would presume yes, since most users are allowed to read in their homedirs). - Just guessing here. – Hennes Oct 16 '12 at 20:48

I had this same problem and used * wildcard so it would work. My file name has dashes in it, such as, so perhaps that I why I needed to use *.zip

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.