Using WinSCP to sync data to Amazon S3, Azure Blob and other Storage clouds over SFTP

winscpAs pre sales engineers there are often times when we need to enable a prospect or customer to connect to the Enterprise File Fabric based on their specific infrastructure and requirements, often impacted by security and architectural topologies.

Recently I had to enable a customer to be able to synchronise local data from a windows server. Normally I would install the File Fabric’s sync app for Windows but there was a security requirement that meant no new software could be installed on this server, it was locked down.

Checking what was available on the server I noticed that WinSCP was already installed. WinSCP is a popular SFTP client for Microsoft Windows.

The File Fabric  has the capability to be configured to use protocol adapters through its protocol gateway. In addition to FTP and WebDav one of the protocol adapters that it ships with the File Fabric is SFTP. The pre-requisite is that the protocol Gateway and Adapter is configured and available for the File Fabric instance.

After verifying it was OK to use the WinSCP app I configured it to work with the File Fabric’s SFTP protocol adapter:

winscp S3 Azure

For the sake of this tutorial I have used the SaaS endpoint of:

but for the enterprise offering it is:

sftp.<appliance endpoint>

with the port number being 2200 and the username and password being the File Fabric account username and the File Fabric account password.

Once logged in we can see the local machine data in the left pane and the File Fabric data in the right pane and if we wish to synchronise data we can click the synchronise button near the top left:

WinSCP File Fabric

If you want two-way sync between the directory / bucket you selected on S3 or Azure and the local directory make sure you select the ‘both’ radio button for the ‘Direction/Target Directory’ option.

Once you are happy with your configuration click ‘OK’ which will then move WinSCP onto the step of evaluating the files between the two directories and determining whether files need to be synchronised,. WinSCP uses timestamps as the means to decide which data to synchronise.

WinSCP S3 Azure Sync

At this point you can still click on the arrow of each individual file or directory to change the sync type before clicking OK to kick off the sync:


This will run until the sync is completed.

This of course is a one time sync but WinSCP also has a scripting/console interface which can interact with a script file. As a future follow up post I will show how you can use setup an automated sync to Cloud Storage such as Amazon S3, Azure using WinSCP, The File Fabric and The Windows Task Scheduler.


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Neil Shorey

Developer and Pre Sales Engineer at Storage Made Easy