pure ftp ftpserver has failed, please contact the sysadmin - SOLVED


Well-Known Member
Oct 29, 2007
cPanel Access Level
Root Administrator
In the middle of the night last night, pureftpd service went down.

We tried restarting the ftp service and got the following error: pure ftp ftpserver has failed, please contact the sysadmin.

So after searching around and trying all the usual stuff like switching over to proftp, reinstalling both ftp servers, disabling firewalls, checking host access...etc....one of my guys after a few hours found the issue.

The problem was the "CallUploadScript yes" option being enabled in /etc/pure-ftpd.conf. The manual says the following.

http://download.pureftpd.org/pub/pure-ftpd/doc/README "- '-o': Write all uploaded files to '/var/run/pure-ftpd.upload.pipe' so that the 'pure-uploadscript' program can run.

Don't enable that option if you don't actually use 'pure-uploadscript' otherwise pure-ftpd will hang waiting for pure-uploadscript to start."
We really hope this helps someone.


Well-Known Member
Dec 27, 2001
Long Beach, NY
cPanel Access Level
Root Administrator
Mission accomplished Craig! This totally helped me out!

Though this appears to be due to a cpanel bug which I am able to reproduce - I made a change via WHM -> FTP Server Configuration (which does not have CallUploadScript) and that appears to cause it to add in the CallUploadScript yes setting, thus causing the failure. I will report this behavior via ticket.

Thanks very much!



Quality Assurance Analyst
Staff member
Oct 2, 2010
somewhere over the rainbow
cPanel Access Level
Root Administrator
Hello Mike,

This wouldn't be a cPanel bug. There is a program that is called ftp_clamscan (and possibly others) that will edit /var/cpanel/conf/pureftpd/main file to add "CallUploadScript yes" and cause this to occur. cPanel doesn't automatically have that line at all in /var/cpanel/conf/pureftpd/main file and only another program would add it.

Once /var/cpanel/conf/pureftpd/main is edited to add lines, then anytime you revise FTP Server Configuration area, it will re-add the lines from that configuration file. Simply remove the custom line from /var/cpanel/conf/pureftpd/main and go back to WHM > FTP Server Configuration area again, save the settings there and it will add a properly generated /etc/pure-ftpd.conf file at that point.