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Home > FTP Client Errors > Connection Refused

Created 25 Apr 2002
Modified 07 Apr 2012

Article 58

No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it. Connection closed.

Problem
When you try to connect to the FTP server you get one of the following error messages:
No connection could be made because the target machine actively refused it. Connection closed.
Connection timeout. No response from server.

Causes/Solutions

FTP server settings
The error is occurring because there is no server listening at the host name and port you entered. Check that you have specified the correct host and port. If you are not sure about this information, please contact your web hosting provider for details. Port 21 is the default FTP port. If the host name of the server your are trying to connect to cannot be resolved to the corresponding IP address, or if you are connecting through a proxy server, try using the IP address instead of the host name. Use an external resolver to get the IP of the host/server you want to connect to.

Software/Personal Firewall Settings
Another common reason is that a firewall software (Zone Alarm, Norton Personal Firewall, etc) running on your system is stopping SmartFTP from making outgoing connections.
To fix this problem add SmartFTP to the list of allowed applications in your firewall software. Please see the links to the howtos below:
Norton Personal Firewall Configuration How To
Zone Alarm Firewall Configuration How To

Multiple Software/Personal Firewalls
If you have Windows XP firewall enabled and a third party firewall software (e.g. McAfee Personal Firewall) installed, disable the Windows XP firewall or uninstall the third party firewall software. There are known problems with having both firewall applications running at the same time.

Anti-virus Software
If you are running "Norton Anti-virus 2005" and having strange problems connecting, disable the "Worm protection" or permit full access to the "sfFTPLib.dll" in the SmartFTP program files directory. If McAfee VirusScan v8 is installed and the "Spyware Plugin" is enabled, go to McAfee VirusScan Console and uncheck the "Prevent FTP outbound" option in the "Port Blocking" dialog of the "Access Protection Properties". Or add the SmartFTP.exe file to the exception list.

Router Firmware
This is an unlikely case but a buggy router firmware may cause exactly the problem described above (e.g. Linksys).
To fix it update the firmware of your router. You can usually update the router firmware in the router web administration interface or visit the manufacturer's website for router updates and further information.

Keywords
connection refused