I am attempting to run an instance of vsftpd and have additional access controls and logging performed by xinetd.

On the VM running both services, I can successfully initiate a ftp connection and manipulate files on both port 21 and port 14121 (where I have xinetd listening). However, if I attempt to initiate a ftp connection from another machine, I encounter the following issue:

ftp 14121
Connected to
220 (vsFTPd 3.0.2)
Name ( [username here]
331 Please specify the password.
230 Login successful.
Remote system type is UNIX.
Using binary mode to transfer files.
ftp> ls
500 Illegal PORT command.
ftp: bind: Address already in use
ftp> pass
Passive mode on.
ftp> ls
227 Entering Passive Mode (127,0,0,1,166,186).
ftp: connect: Connection refused

My firewall is configured as follows:

# firewall-cmd --list-all
public (active)
  target: default
  icmp-block-inversion: no
  interfaces: ens33
  services: dhcpv6-client ssh
  ports: 80/tcp 443/tcp 14121/tcp
  masquerade: no
  rich rules: 

# netstat -ant
Active Internet connections (servers and established)
Proto Recv-Q Send-Q Local Address           Foreign Address         State      
tcp        0      0  *               LISTEN     
tcp        0      0    *               LISTEN     
tcp        0      0*               LISTEN     
tcp        0      0    *               LISTEN     
tcp        0      0 *               LISTEN     
tcp       15      0            CLOSE_WAIT 
tcp       15      0         CLOSE_WAIT 
tcp6       0      0 ::1:25                  :::*                    LISTEN     
tcp6       0      0 :::443                  :::*                    LISTEN     
tcp6       0      0 :::14121                :::*                    LISTEN     
tcp6       0      0 :::80                   :::*                    LISTEN     
tcp6       0      0 :::22                   :::*                    LISTEN     
tcp6       0      0 ::1:631                 :::*                    LISTEN   

my xinetd.conf file is configured as follows:

# The next two items are intended to be a quick access place to
# temporarily enable or disable services.
#   enabled     =
#   disabled    =

# Define general logging characteristics.
    log_type    = SYSLOG authpriv
    log_on_failure  = HOST
    log_on_success  = PID HOST DURATION EXIT

# Define access restriction defaults
#   no_access   =
#   only_from   =
#   max_load    = 0
    cps     = 50 10
    instances   = 50
    per_source  = 10

# Address and networking defaults
#   bind        =
#   mdns        = yes
    v6only      = no

# setup environmental attributes
#   passenv     =
    groups      = yes
    umask       = 002

# Generally, banners are not used. This sets up their global defaults
#   banner      =
#   banner_fail =
#   banner_success  =

includedir /etc/xinetd.d

The xinetd config file for vsftpd is configured as follows

service FTP
    disable = no
    type = UNLISTED
    wait = no
    user = root
    server = /usr/sbin/vsftpd
    socket_type = stream
    protocol = tcp
    port = 14121
    redirect = 21
    log_on_success = PID HOST DURATION EXIT
    log_on_failure += HOST
    cps = 5 30

Finally, my vsftpd config is as follows:

# Example config file /etc/vsftpd/vsftpd.conf
# The default compiled in settings are fairly paranoid. This sample file
# loosens things up a bit, to make the ftp daemon more usable.
# Please see vsftpd.conf.5 for all compiled in defaults.
# READ THIS: This example file is NOT an exhaustive list of vsftpd options.
# Please read the vsftpd.conf.5 manual page to get a full idea of vsftpd's
# capabilities.
# Allow anonymous FTP? (Beware - allowed by default if you comment this out).
# Uncomment this to allow local users to log in.
# When SELinux is enforcing check for SE bool ftp_home_dir
# Uncomment this to enable any form of FTP write command.
# Default umask for local users is 077. You may wish to change this to 022,
# if your users expect that (022 is used by most other ftpd's)
# Uncomment this to allow the anonymous FTP user to upload files. This only
# has an effect if the above global write enable is activated. Also, you will
# obviously need to create a directory writable by the FTP user.
# When SELinux is enforcing check for SE bool allow_ftpd_anon_write, allow_ftpd_full_access
# Uncomment this if you want the anonymous FTP user to be able to create
# new directories.
# Activate directory messages - messages given to remote users when they
# go into a certain directory.
# Activate logging of uploads/downloads.
# Make sure PORT transfer connections originate from port 20 (ftp-data).
# If you want, you can arrange for uploaded anonymous files to be owned by
# a different user. Note! Using "root" for uploaded files is not
# recommended!
# You may override where the log file goes if you like. The default is shown
# below.
# If you want, you can have your log file in standard ftpd xferlog format.
# Note that the default log file location is /var/log/xferlog in this case.
# You may change the default value for timing out an idle session.
# You may change the default value for timing out a data connection.
# It is recommended that you define on your system a unique user which the
# ftp server can use as a totally isolated and unprivileged user.
# Enable this and the server will recognise asynchronous ABOR requests. Not
# recommended for security (the code is non-trivial). Not enabling it,
# however, may confuse older FTP clients.
# By default the server will pretend to allow ASCII mode but in fact ignore
# the request. Turn on the below options to have the server actually do ASCII
# mangling on files when in ASCII mode.
# Beware that on some FTP servers, ASCII support allows a denial of service
# attack (DoS) via the command "SIZE /big/file" in ASCII mode. vsftpd
# predicted this attack and has always been safe, reporting the size of the
# raw file.
# ASCII mangling is a horrible feature of the protocol.
# You may fully customise the login banner string:
#ftpd_banner=Welcome to blah FTP service.
# You may specify a file of disallowed anonymous e-mail addresses. Apparently
# useful for combatting certain DoS attacks.
# (default follows)
# You may specify an explicit list of local users to chroot() to their home
# directory. If chroot_local_user is YES, then this list becomes a list of
# users to NOT chroot().
# (Warning! chroot'ing can be very dangerous. If using chroot, make sure that
# the user does not have write access to the top level directory within the
# chroot)
# (default follows)
# You may activate the "-R" option to the builtin ls. This is disabled by
# default to avoid remote users being able to cause excessive I/O on large
# sites. However, some broken FTP clients such as "ncftp" and "mirror" assume
# the presence of the "-R" option, so there is a strong case for enabling it.
# When "listen" directive is enabled, vsftpd runs in standalone mode and
# listens on IPv4 sockets. This directive cannot be used in conjunction
# with the listen_ipv6 directive.
# This directive enables listening on IPv6 sockets. By default, listening
# on the IPv6 "any" address (::) will accept connections from both IPv6
# and IPv4 clients. It is not necessary to listen on *both* IPv4 and IPv6
# sockets. If you want that (perhaps because you want to listen on specific
# addresses) then you must run two copies of vsftpd with two configuration
# files.
# Make sure, that one of the listen options is commented !!


I have attempted:

  • Altering the listen parameter in vsftpd.conf (no and yes)

  • Setting a passive port range and having xinetd forward to that range

  • Opening port 21 and connecting to vsftpd directly

  • Using a different FTP client (Filezilla)

  • Explicitly binding vsftpd to localhost

So far none of these have resulted in a successful external connection resulting in listing or manipulation of files.

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