Recently I wanted to copy some files between two servers. Yes I haven’t done this before in a terminal session. Usually I utilize GUI powered tools to do the job via SFTP.

I decided to do this with SCP because it’s way faster than SFTP, sais:

SFTP, Secure File Transfer Program similar to ftp, but performs all operations over an encrypted SSH transport, thus gaining the features of public key encryption and compression.

SCP, Secure Copy is a program to copy files between hosts on a network. It too uses SSH for authentication and data transfer, thus gaining the features of strong authentication and secure encrypted communications.

Some googleing brought me to this site: Instead of bookmarking it I share the information with you. These are some methods how you can copy files or whole directories:

Copy myfile.txt from to


Copy file from remote server to /tmp/mydir:

scp /tmp/mydir

Copy remote file myfile.txt from /tmp/mydir to current directory:

scp myfile.txt

Copy file using port 5533 to current directory:

scp -P 5533 .

Copy the local directory mydir to /tmp/remotedir on

scp -r mydir

Copy files from to current directory and set the bandwidth limit to 50 Kbit/s:

scp -l 50* .

Use blowfish encription and compression to transfer files, this will increase speed on low bandwith connections, but also add extra overhead on the CPU:

scp -c blowfish -C myfile.txt

Copy multiple files from remote host to current directory:

scp\{myfile1.txt,myfile2.txt\} .

Use blowfish encription to speed up transfer rate, copy myfile.txt to in users home directory:

scp -c blowfish myfile.txt