FileZilla Error: ETIMEDOUT

By Jack Gerard

FileZilla is a free, open-source program that allows users to transfer files to and from servers on the Internet using the FTP file transfer protocol. The FileZilla client must connect to a server using a user's username and password before files can be transferred to or from that server. If the server doesn't respond within a set period of time, an error may occur.


If the FileZilla client is unable to communicate with a server within the time specified in the program's settings, an "ETIMEDOUT" error occurs. The error message "ETIMEDOUT -- Connection Attempt Timed Out" appears in the connection window, and the program aborts the connection attempt. After an ETIMEDOUT error occurs, the program will typically begin another connection attempt automatically. Depending on the way the user has FileZilla configured, the program may attempt to connect several times before stopping its attempts completely.

Server-Side Causes

Hardware or software firewalls on the server are the most common server-side cause of ETIMEDOUT errors. If the firewall isn't properly configured, it won't allow FileZilla to connect fully at the address and port number that the user is attempting to connect to. Other server-side causes include large amounts of traffic that reduce the bandwidth available for a connection, malicious software that interferes with the proper function of the server's operating system and problems with the server's network hardware or the software drivers that allow the hardware to function properly.

User-Side Causes

Not all ETIMEDOUT errors are a result of problems on the server side of the connection. These errors can also occur due to the firewall on the user's computer restricting or blocking outgoing traffic or problems occurring with the user's network equipment. Improper configuration of FileZilla can also cause ETIMEDOUT errors if the user has the connection settings configured to too short of a timeout period. Viruses or other malware can also interfere with outgoing connections.

Correcting ETIMEDOUT Problems

Users can attempt to correct ETIMEDOUT errors by adjusting the "Timeout" threshold in FileZilla's settings, accessible by selecting the "Settings" option from the Edit menu and locating the "Timeout" section. A virus scan and taking the time to check that firewall and router exceptions have been created for FileZilla can also ensure that other user-side connection problems have been ruled out. While users cannot correct server-side errors themselves unless they have administrative access to the server in question, the increased "Timeout" threshold prevents the connection attempts from timing out too quickly.

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