FTP (embedded) fields

An embedded FTP server is available after a community adds a trading or application delivery exchange that uses an embedded FTP server. You can change the server’s settings and advanced options.

To change settings:

  1. Select System management > Manage embedded servers. Or, click Trading configuration on the toolbar.
  2. On the Communities page, click the link near the bottom of the page named Manage all embedded servers.

The following are the maintenance fields for an embedded FTP transport server that has been added by a community.

Settings tab

  • Server name – A name you give the transport server to distinguish it from other embedded servers. This field gets its initial value when you type it in the delivery exchange wizard.
  • Port – The port on which Activator listens for connection requests.
  • Add an SSL server certificate or SSL server certificate – For optional SSL, the server requires an SSL certificate. If the server has a certificate, the name of the certificate is displayed. If the server does not have an SSL certificate, you are prompted to provide one.
  • For FTP, once a certificate is added the server becomes FTPS using explicit SSL. Non-SSL connections are not allowed. If the certificate is removed, the server becomes FTP once more.
  • This server requires client authentication – Select this to use the partner’s certificate to authenticate the partner when the partner connects to the server. This field displays only if you have added an SSL certificate for the server.
  • Use implicit SSL – Select this if you want to use implicit SSL rather than explicit SSL, which is the default mode. FTP supports two methods to accomplish security through a sequence of commands passed between two computers. The sequence is initiated with explicit (active) or implicit (passive) security.
    • Explicit security. To establish the SSL link, explicit security requires the FTP client to issue a specific command to the FTP server after establishing a connection. The default FTP server port is used.
    • Implicit security. Implicit security begins with an SSL connection as soon as the FTP client connects to an FTP server. The FTP server defines a specific port for the client to be used for secure connections.
  • This field displays only if you have added an SSL certificate for the server.
  • External host or IP address – The fully qualified domain name or IP address that a community’s partners must use to connect to this embedded server. Activator supplies a value based on the name of the host computer. In many cases you must change this to the external name used by your network firewall or load balancer. Contact your network administrator if you need help with this field.
  • External port – The port number that a community’s partners must use to connect to this embedded server. Contact your network administrator if you need help with this field.
  • FTP passive ports – If you enable port forwarding for embedded FTP, go to the Advanced tab and specify a range of ports.
  • If you do not allow SSL connections, the external firewall automatically opens FTP passive ports on an as-needed basis, assuming you explicitly tell it which control ports are being used for FTP. If you allow SSL connections, you must open the entire range of passive ports on the firewall. Otherwise it cannot eavesdrop on the control connection to dynamically open the passive ports.

Advanced tab

  • Maximum concurrent connections – Default = 500. The maximum number of concurrent connections that can be accepted by the embedded server from a trading partner or back-end application.
  • For example, if the value is 100 connections and there are 150 messages to consume, Activator accepts only 100 connections from the connecting partner or back-end application. The remaining 50 messages must wait until connections become available.
  • If you are operating in a cluster environment, this is the total number across the entire cluster, no matter how many nodes are running.
  • Read/idle timeout (seconds) – The maximum number of seconds the server waits when reading data from a partner.
  • Allowed passive ports – Ports for inbound passive data connections from FTP clients. You can enter multiple ports, separated by a comma or you can specify a range of ports. Fox example: 50000,50001,50010-50020
    • No other computers, besides the machine running Activator server, can use this same range of ports. If you operate multiple instances of Activator in a cluster, the same applies to all machines in the cluster.
    • If clients are to make secure data connections to the server, these ports must be opened in the firewall. If secure connections are not required, most firewalls are FTP-aware and automatically open the data connection port based on the fact that a client already has a connection to the FTP control port.
    • If you use a Windows OS, se the FTP-aware external firewall and disable the Windows firewall (or you must add an exception for each passive port in the Windows firewall).
    • In the case of SSL connections, even FTP-aware firewalls cannot dynamically open passive ports. If clients are to connect over SSL, open the same range of ports in the firewall as you specify in this field. Failure to do so results in clients experiencing hangs when performing LIST, GET and PUT operations.
  • Override SSL and TLS cipher suites – Select this option and use the Add and Remove buttons to specify the cipher suites supported for the embedded server. The cipher suites that are displayed in the "Available" column depend on your runtime environment (JRE version or IACK enablement ....).
Note   If you do not select this option, all cipher suites are supported by default. This is less secure than specifying a restricted set of cipher suites.

Trusted roots certificates tab

The trusted roots certificates tab displays the roots of clients’ certificates that a server trusts. In the case of a self-signed certificate, the trust is for the certificate itself, as a self-signed certificate is a root certificate. In the case of a certificate authority certificate, the trust is for the root certificate in the chain of trust of a client’s certificate.

Home directories tab

Use the Home directories tab to force messages to be directed to a single directory. Specifying home directories is optional.

Home directories are used by FTP and SFTP embedded servers to direct messages to a single subdirectory for a transport user. For example, a community has three delivery exchanges for receiving messages from partners. All exchanges use the same embedded server and the same user to connect to the server. The user subdirectories for each exchange are different. The subdirectories are:

Exchange point


User subdirectory

No packaging



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