I got a 200GB .tgz file on server A(RHEL 5.2). I wanna transfer that file to server B (RHEL 5.3). Server B is on ESXi 4 Update1. Server B VM is with 4 vCPUs, with 10GB RAM.

Both Server A and Server B are connected with an ethernet cable with local IP addies (no switch involved)

scp gives me about 3Mbps. Is there a way to get 400Mbps?

4 Answers 4


To be real down and dirty you can use netcat.

On the sender

cat {filename} | nc -l 3333

On the receiver

nc {sender_ip_address} 3333 > {filename}

Since there will be nearly no application overhead, you should only be limited by IO, whether disk or network.

  • 2
    +1 for netcat - the best tool for this kind of thing IMO
    – squircle
    Mar 31, 2010 at 20:37
  • The proper syntax on the receive side is cat filename | nc -l -p 3333 Otherwise it will silently bind a random port...
    – b0fh
    Mar 31, 2010 at 21:41
  • 3
    useless use of cat ;) nc -l 3333 < {filename}
    – James
    Mar 31, 2010 at 21:46
  • @james: Yeah, it's a personal preference thing. Using cat is what I first learned and got used to. Similarly, retraining myself to using 'sudo -i' instead of 'sudo su -' has been fun :)
    – Scott Pack
    Apr 1, 2010 at 11:38
  • 1
    @b0fh: The -p option specifies source port, and the man page specifically points out that, "It is an error to use this option in conjunction with the -l option."
    – Scott Pack
    Apr 2, 2010 at 22:56

Use an unencrypted transfer method that doesn't do compression. I'd suggest FTP, given how simple it is to setup and the lack of chatty protocol, like Samba


Good points from Matt again, you might also consider ensuring you have the latest VMtools installed on Server B.


You need a FTP server that supports Mode Z compression or bzip compression such as NULL FTP Server . I don't know what the Linux equivilant would be. With compression you can increase the efficiency/speed by up to 75%, depending on what you are doing.

  • Compression over a LAN is a bad idea. The amount of time the CPU spends compressing the data could be better spent sending it across the wire. Mar 31, 2010 at 21:21
  • I dunno. Most modern systems will do gzip compression (not bzip) at 100MB/sec+ - wire speed basically - so compression can be a net win depending on the data. We compress over the LAN for certain workloads and it actually speeds things up hugely.
    – James
    Mar 31, 2010 at 21:45
  • 1
    Yes, except for he is transferring an already gzipped file. I assume he won't be able to get it any smaller.
    – Earlz
    Mar 31, 2010 at 22:00
  • Very good point
    – James
    Mar 31, 2010 at 22:30

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