Can't Scan to Windows 8/Server 2012 Network Folder? Call FileZilla!

Both a regular Mission Valley business IT and Rancho Santa Fe computer repair customer had an issue where, after upgrading their computers, they couldn't scan to a network folder like they used to.

They checked and rechecked their settings, and all seemed right. Both times, they decided to bring in the big guns and hire a Friendly Neighborhood Computer Helper (that's us!)

Needless to say, we fixed the issue and got scanning to work to the respective folders, but how'd we do it?

This next paragraph can be a little techie, so feel free to skip to the solution if you want!

First, some background: Many copiers and scanners use a very basic operating system to get things done. Typically it's a simple form of Linux. Imagine that Linux is German and Windows is English. Without a common translator that speaks both Linux/German and Windows/English, neither of these machines could talk. So, the scanner uses a translator (a protocol) called SMB (short for Server Message Block). Now, Linux and Mac OSX speak SMB through a included software called Samba. Bottom line, Windows, Linux and other operating systems can communicate through SMB. Thanks SMB!

So, if they can talk using SMB, why isn't it working with Windows 8/Server 2012 R2? In the latest versions of Windows, Microsoft upgraded their version of SMB to SMB3 (wait, there are versions, too?) without much in the way of backward compatibility. Your scanner/copier has an older version and thus the two don't communicate. Imagine Modern English vs. Ye Olde English.

So… solution # 1 would be to call your copier leaseholders and have them send a tech to update the firmware (they don't distribute that stuff freely). In our experience, it's like pulling teeth to get them out… so what's next? How about a brilliant workaround?

Our Solution

We decided to ditch the scan to folder using SMB:// and instead, used the native FTP (File Transfer Protocol) function on the Ricoh copier. FTP is like SMB, but even more common. BUT, you need to set up a FTP server software on the server/computer and configure it to listen and wait for a scan to come in.

Here's the easy way to do that. Download FileZilla Server from and install it. Start the program, add a user (I used “scans”) and set a password. Choose the default path as your scan folder and you're set.

Change the scanner to use FTP instead of SMB and enter the user and password you entered above and scan away!

The fix is much faster than the explanation. Hope you learned something! As always, if this seems too techie to try on your own, give us a call and we'll send a Friendly Neighborhood Tech Helper to fix your scanning problems with a smile!