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Today I saw that Vista and Win7 (which I am using) have the option to map ftp natively, according to this article:

But I need to have sftp... does windows has the same function for sftp?? I'm using SSH secure shell, and assuming that the file transfer that they have is sftp.

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closed as off-topic by Sven Sep 15 '15 at 11:58

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Actually, you've been able to map FTP locations as folders in this way since Windows 2000. You can also just type something like ftp://<server>/ or ftp://<user>@<server>/ into the Windows Explorer address bar. – David Spillett Jun 25 '09 at 11:48
Interesting, I didn't know that. Tks ! – Igor B. Jun 25 '09 at 17:18
Elaborated on David Spillet and djangofan's answers. – mpbloch Aug 13 '09 at 19:43
Note, my answer is not SFTP subsystem of SSH, but is FTP over SSH. Not sure if that works for you. – mpbloch Aug 13 '09 at 19:49
5 years later and still this is not possible... – Enigma May 8 '15 at 16:08

10 Answers 10

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Setting up FTP is one thing.
But, supporting Secure FTP requires integrating a public key authentication mechanism into the system. Windows is not close to that yet (at least for mapping file systems). And, if any such thing is now supported in Windows 7, I'd like to know very much.

Meanwhile, freeSSHd is a very good tool for the purpose.
It also supports SFTP, though my favorite command through it is scp.

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Thanks for the explanantion, that answer my question! – Igor B. Jun 27 '09 at 20:31
Does this freeSShd allow me to create something like a mapped folder to an sftp server? – AntonioCS Jun 7 '10 at 22:39
@antoniocs, I strongly doubt it cannot. But, would like to know if it can be done now. – nik Jun 8 '10 at 0:52
I am afraid, it cannot. Also, over time it turned out to be badly unmaintained. BTW: STFP NetDrive by Eldos is distributed under a freeware license and offers drive mounting as requested by the OP. – the-wabbit Oct 6 '12 at 21:05
NetDrive does not work correctly with SSH. Don't use it. – Softlion Mar 22 at 15:21

I don't think you can do that natively in windows, however here is a software corresponding to your needs: expandrive.
Hope this helps.

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Yeah, sort of ... I was thinking something natively like the ftp, but don't think that there is (at least on Windows). – Igor B. Jun 25 '09 at 17:19
expandrive is sloooooooow and buggy when it comes down to permissions. I'd stay away from it. – LiraNuna Aug 12 '09 at 20:38

See this question on Serverfault:

Is there an open source tool to map SFTP connections as a Windows mapped drive?

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Thanks, I commented on that question. But I was searching for some native tool, so I raised the question :) – Igor B. Jun 25 '09 at 17:16

Swish is perfect for that. As simple as doubleclicking and set your drive : you're done !

It works perfectly on Win 7 32bits

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Looks great. Just note that it doesn't support drive mapping and/or referring to remote folders in file management; you can also open file remotely, but can't save to a SFTP folder. – Gnudiff Dec 30 '11 at 16:15
I tried Swish as well and you can only list your folder and file structure, you can't save any changes that you made. – Valter Henrique May 26 '15 at 11:42
its crap can't use the directory in anything but explorer what a joke – Nicholas DiPiazza Apr 17 at 3:36

djangofan has it pretty close.

You can set up port forwarding through SSH. You can also, if supported on the server, run an FTP server, but only accept connections from localhost. Otherwise, where's the security?

Then, suppose you even can only run the server FTP process in user space, and can't glob onto port 21. Ok, call it port 2121.

SSH into server, with PuTTY, for example, and set up local port forwarding from port 21 to server:2121 or even localhost:2121 if you bound only to on the server FTP process.

Now your SSH program is listening on port 21 of your client (Windows) port 21, and forwarding that over SSH and asking for, e.g. localhost:2121 in the realm of the server environment.

Then, take David Spillett's answer, but use localhost as the server, assuming you're not already running some other FTP server at your host.

Windows Explorer should then open up ftp://localhost and you'll see the FTP process running on the server. I suspect that you will only be able to do PASV mode transfers.


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Just try Moodisk. It's a Windows shell namespace extension, can map the sftp-server directory to a icon on your computer desktop. Moreover, it integrates into the mouse's right click Send To submenu.

Moodisk is a network drive, but you can download the client tool, and modify the file c:\windows\system32\drivers\etc\hosts, append the line below:

<your sftp-server's ip address>

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I have found the WinSCP is a good windows solution for SFTP in windows. It is not a mapped drive but it does allow for drag and drop and has Putty integration. Check it out at

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Your intention is good, but the OP specifically asked for a solution to create a network mapping via SFTP. – pauska Oct 6 '12 at 22:24

Windows doesn't have the SSH function but you can use Putty.exe to do that.

All you do is run Putty.exe telnet on port 22 to open a tunnel to the other machine assuming the FTP machine is serving as a SSH host. You create a proxy on a local port (using putty configuration) that routes you through the secure tunnel to the remote FTP ports 20+21. Then configure Windows 7 to map the FTP source as a drive (through the SSH tunnel)

I haven't tried this myself but I assume it would work: A mapped drive using Windows 7 and "secured using a Putty SSL tunnel"

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Swish is also a good and easy client for SFTP. You can manage multiple connections and have them like your share folders.

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