I installed Proftpd Administrator GUI to make it easier to manage my FTP users. The problem I have is that I have to set the directory permissions to 777 to allow the virtual users saved in the mysql database to edit and save the files. If I change it to 775, the user gets Permission Denied.

This is my proftpd.conf file

Include /etc/proftpd/modules.conf

ServerName                      "ServerName"
ServerType                      standalone
ServerIdent                     on              "Servers identifying string"
DeferWelcome                    on
DefaultServer                   on

DisplayLogin                    .welcome        # Textfile to display on login
DisplayConnect                  .connect        # Textfile to display on connec$
#DisplayFirstChdir               .firstchdir    # Textfile to display on first $

UseReverseDNS                   off
IdentLookups                    off

Port                            21
Umask                           022
MaxInstances                    15
MaxClientsPerHost               3               "Only %m connections per host a$
MaxClients                      10              "Only %m total simultanious log$
MaxHostsPerUser                 1

User                            proftpd
Group                           www-data

ScoreboardFile                  /var/log/scoreboard

# Some logging formats
LogFormat                       default         "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %s %b"
LogFormat                       auth            "%v [%P] %h %t \"%r\" %s"
LogFormat                       write           "%h %l %u %t \"%r\" %s %b"

# Define log-files to use
TransferLog                     /var/log/proftpd.xferlog
ExtendedLog                     /var/log/proftpd.access_log    WRITE,READ write
ExtendedLog                     /var/log/proftpd.auth_log      AUTH auth
ExtendedLog                     /var/log/proftpd.paranoid_log  ALL default
SQLLogFile                      /var/log/proftpd.mysql

# Set up authentication via SQL
# ===========
AuthOrder                       mod_sql.c
SQLAuthTypes                    Backend
SQLConnectInfo                  proftpd_admin username password
SQLUserInfo                     usertable userid passwd uid gid homedir shell
SQLGroupInfo                    grouptable groupname gid members
SQLUserWhereClause              "disabled=0 and (NOW()<=expiration or expiratio$

# Log the user logging in
SQLLog PASS counter
SQLNamedQuery counter UPDATE "lastlogin=now(), count=count+1 WHERE userid='%u'"$

# logout log
SQLLog EXIT time_logout
SQLNamedQuery time_logout UPDATE "lastlogout=now() WHERE userid='%u'" usertable

# display last login time when PASS command is given
SQLNamedQuery login_time SELECT "lastlogin from usertable where userid='%u'"
SQLShowInfo PASS "230" "Last login was: %{login_time}"

# xfer Log in mysql
SQLLog RETR,STOR transfer1
SQLNamedQuery  transfer1 INSERT "'%u', '%f', '%b', '%h', '%a', '%m', '%T', now($
SQLNamedQuery  transfer2 INSERT "'%u', '%f', '%b', '%h', '%a', '%m', '%T', now($

AllowStoreRestart               on
AllowRetrieveRestart            on
RequireValidShell               off
#PathDenyFilter                  "\\.ftp)|\\.ht)[a-z]+$"
DefaultRoot                     ~
DenyFilter                      \*.*/

<Directory /path/to/dir>
        AllowOverwrite          on
        HideNoAccess            off
        <Limit READ>

        <Limit WRITE>

<Directory /path/to/dir>
        AllowOverwrite          on
        HideNoAccess            on

        <Limit READ>

        <Limit STOR MKD>

I put the proftpd user that is running proftpd service in www-data (the group that is set to that directory). I changed the virtual users GID to match the www-data GID from the system (which is 33). When I create a new file with a virtual user, that file GID is set to 65533 and permissions with 644. This GID doesn't exist in my systems /etc/group file.

How can I keep the folder and files permissions to 755 and let the user edit and save those files?

1 Answer 1


I suspect that mod_sql might be filtering the UID/GID values that you have assigned to your users in your SQL database. By default, mod_sql (for historical reasons) imposes a minimum value for the numeric IDs; any values below this minimum are mapped to a default value. See:


and that value of 65533 comes from the defaults, e.g.:


So given this, you might try adding:


to your proftpd.conf.

  • Almost 4 years later but still working on proftpd with Debian Stretch. Thanks!
    – martintama
    Nov 4, 2018 at 22:31

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