File transfer process

The file transfer process defines how data files are imported and exported to/from your BMC Helix environments. An example of incoming information includes initial and ongoing data loading of people, asset, and related data. Examples of outgoing information include reports and application debug logs. Additionally, Smart Reporting can be configured to write reports directly to the SFTP server account.


Select customers approved by BMC will keep the BMC Helix Innovation Studio - Reporting User service up to April 2024. 

The file transfer service outlines the procedures for information delivery in both directions. This topic contains the following information:

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Processing an encrypted file

File transfer workflow

To facilitate data in and out of your environments, customers are provided distinct and separate accounts for each destination environment (for example, production, QA, and development) on the BMC-hosted SFTP servers. Within each account are separate directories for inbound and outbound transfers. For inbound transfers, customers should upload data to the ToOnDemand directory. Likewise, for outbound transfers, customers can download data from the FromOnDemand directory. When configuring your data transfer, use the following directory paths: 

Receiving data into BMC Helix ITSM: /opt/bmc/ars/data/ToOnDemand

Sending data from BMC Helix ITSM: /opt/bmc/ars/data/FromOnDemand


Connectivity to external cloud and on-premises infrastructure is prohibited on BMC Helix applications. 

Roles & Responsibilities

The design and development of the transfer job is the sole responsibility of the customer. If development assistance is needed, you may consult with BMC Global Services or a trusted partner.

Incoming data loading process

In order to deliver data to the BMC cloud for import into a BMC Helix environment, the file transfer service should be utilized by first uploading the desired data to the designated environment's FTP account using the specific environment account information provided. Once logged in to the FTP server, files should be placed in the ToOnDemand directory. From this location, the data is available for consumption by any import process within the application. To import files from the FTP server into the BMC Helix container, add the following step at the beginning of the Pentaho job definition: 

get a file with FTP

Outgoing information delivery process

For information received from a BMC Helix environment, the reverse process is very similar. Depending on your use case, the application should be configured to write data directly to the specific environment FTP account for the file transfer service. Outgoing data should be placed into the FromOnDemand directory. From this location and path, customers can download their data as needed. 

To export files from the BMC Helix container, add the following step to the Pentaho job definition: 

put a file with FTP

File retention

Files will remain in the FromOnDemand and ToOnDemand directories for no more than seven days (based on the Last Modified Date of the file) . If you have implemented a move process that transfers the file from the ToOnDemand directory to a cloud server, the file will no longer be present upon job execution. Conversely, if you have downloaded a file from the FromOnDemand directory to your local machine, the file will no longer be present once that download is complete.

Temporary FTP sites provided to customers during Helix onboarding and on-prem to Helix migration projects may retain files for a longer period of time, defined by the customer, partner or Professional Services team upon request. Once the onboarding or migration project is complete, the respective temporary FTP sites will be cleared.  

Supported file transfer standards

BMC supports a variety of protocols to allow maximum flexibility for customer connections utilizing the file transfer service. Both encrypted and unencrypted connections and transfers are supported, however encryption is strongly recommended. For transfers using the FTP protocol, plain FTP and FTPS using Explicit SSL are both supported using passive mode only. File transfers using SFTP are also supported. User/password authentication for all protocols as well as key authentication for SFTP are supported. Port requirements are listed below.


Systems hosted in an AWS location support SFTP only.

Required ports

Ports used for the file transfer process include:

  • FTP – TCP 21 for control channel
  • FTP – TCP 32000-40000 for passive port range (data channel)
  • SFTP – TCP 22
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  1. Siddharth Kamble

    Martha Mulvaney, In containers MFT will not transfer the data automatically to containers, Please make the necessary changes and refer the below link provided by R&D. 

    .Remedy containers: Transferring files v18.08.01

    Sirisha Dabiru, please assist here. we need to send the updated link to Customers.


    Jan 15, 2019 09:55
  2. Jan Sierens

    Martha Mulvaney Siddharth Kamble Sirisha Dabiru

    The link provided isn't accessible ".Remedy containers: Transferring files v18.08.01"

    Can you provide an updated link/updated procedure on how MFT works?

    Do I understand correctly the MFT service is seen as an FTP(S) server that from customer side?

    Best regards,


    Sep 18, 2020 08:23
    1. Martha Mulvaney

      The link in the comments is not available externally . The content of that link is stated on this page however, with the instruction to use the Get and Put FTP commands in the Pentaho job. 

      Yes, the service is seen as an FTPs server.

      Sep 20, 2020 01:05
  3. Maximilian Bugl
    • There is no sync job between FTP and Helix ARS server anymore.
    • AI job needs to be used to transfer files from FTP to Helix ARS server
    • After downloading a file from FTP (fromondemand folder) to a local machine it still persists on the FTP and is not getting deleted as mentioned.

    Oct 21, 2020 05:41
    1. Dhanya Menon

      Hello Maximilian,

      Thank you for your comment and we apologize for the delay in our response.

      This page has now been updated.



      Feb 13, 2023 05:26
  4. SudeepKumar Chandrasekaran

    How can we fetch files from Business workflow cases and send to FTP location ? do we need to use pentaho or is there a way from Innovation studio ?

    Aug 17, 2023 06:05
  5. Ashok Kumar Jha

    Hi Sudeep, To accomplish this, you need write a custom api program which can pull attachment data from Business workflows and then push it to your ftp location. Thanks.

    Sep 21, 2023 06:25