I'm generally new to this, but I have a server that I'm working on remotely. I'm connecting to it (Ubuntu Server 16.04) via SSH (vsftpd, to be specific) on my mac, but it wont let me edit files? I've looked around and edited permissions but it still wont work.

I'm trying to edit ./beta/ :

user@the-world-meme-database:/var/www$ ls -l
total 12
drwxrwxrwx 4 www      www-data 4096 Oct 27 20:31 beta
drwxr-xrwx 3 www-data www-data 4096 Oct 27 14:50 html
drwxr-xrwx 3 www-data www-data 4096 Oct 27 12:05 webdav

and my vsftpd.conf (Without comments) :

#ftpd_banner=AyyLmao FTP Server.
# (default follows)
# (default follows)
  • 1
    You are trying to edit a directory? Not all FTP combinations allow edit.
    – closetnoc
    Oct 28, 2016 at 1:17

3 Answers 3


As mentioned by master sensei closetnoc not all FTP connections allow that.

In addition, as a Mac user I have noticed that not all FTP clients will allow editing. The best results I have gotten is using Fetch FTP client for Mac which there is also a Ubuntu version.

This has allowed me to edit what is editable.

  • I am working from old memory, however, FTP over SSH specifically does not allow editing. If you want to edit, use SSH. Duh... ;-) Feel free to correct me if I have that wrong - anyone! Cheers!!
    – closetnoc
    Oct 28, 2016 at 2:58
  • Yes, I am excluding SSH all together in my statement. Direct FTP is my best results editing directories and files when allowed. Oct 28, 2016 at 3:00
  • I noticed the SSH in the OPs Q and I had to respond somehow. Perhaps I should have posted it under the Q. I was really directing the comment in general. Cheers Mate!!
    – closetnoc
    Oct 28, 2016 at 3:04
  • I should have probably commented myself on the SSH as well since it is in the question. I just seem to have problems whenever running FTP in general via any method other than directly. Hope all is well with you! :) Oct 28, 2016 at 3:06
  • Alls well. Dragging my ass. Believe me, he does not appreciate me dragging him around. (donkey) I have been out most of the afternoon and evening. Too tired to trust my logic too much. Oh well. Tomorrow is another day. How are you doing?? Well? Leaving your poor ass in the field? I recommend it.
    – closetnoc
    Oct 28, 2016 at 3:10

This drwxrwxrwx lets me know that beta is readable, writable and can be exercuted by all users of any groups, however what it doesn't tell me is that the files or folders within them folders use the same permissions.

Please confirm that you have done chmod recursively using:

sudo chmod 777 -R /var/www/beta

If not, then it should resolve your issue.


Only run this command on your terminal

chown -R username /var/www/html

and then restart the vsftpd service by using below command

sudo /etc/init.d/vsftpd restart

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