where did telnet go? (10.13 preview)

Is it just me or is the telnet client no longer present in macOS High Sierra? There doesn't appear to be an open source drop in replacement that works out of the box, and telnet + libtelnet combination from opensource.apple.com doesn't appear to work out of the box either. I think the telnet package that gentoo uses could be patched to work, but wanted to see if anyone wanted to weigh in here first before I spend too much time on that.


Not just you.

It is at

on my Mac with 10.11, but it is not there for me in 10.13

Another thread recommends Using ssh and sftp instead.

As a temporary solution I just copied the telnet file from my other machine.

there is nc (netcat?) ... which is like telnet

I haven't yet found a workaround for the lack of ftp (other than to build/install ncftp I guess)

This is a definite retrograde step on Apple's part 😟

There's a pretty huge list of "work arounds" concerning the lact of ftp, but they all involve a lecture concerning the lack of security in ftp and a list of the various alternate protocols that could be getting used. If you're using ftp for anonymous ftp, that's better done using HTTP. If you're using ftp for other things, you're better off using sftp, scp, or something similar.

To be blunt, I'd expect a networking person to look at you like you were asking about Gopher support if you complained about the lack of an ftp client. :-/

The problem is some programs using ftp to access data located in servers controlled by 3rd parties.

Does ftp support via PHP work? Is that a native implementation or does it use the standard Unix tools?

If you've got some reason that you need ftp (or telnet), file a bug report in the bug reporter. Those get read and tabulated, not forum posts.

YOu can check the PHP source code if you've got questions about how it implements ftp. But given that there's no configuration options that I can see for the ftp module (where'd you have to specify the external path, for instance) I'd assume it's its own implementation.

I use Telnet everyday and so I jumped over hoops to copy it over from my Sierra machine and posted a bugreporter "suggestion" to put it back.

Can you ssh from terminal instead of using telnet? Way more secure....

Go to "www.gnu.org/software/inetutils/" (full URL omitted to avoid moderation)

Click on the HTTP download link for "Inetutils"

Download "inetutils-1.9.4.tar.gz"

tar zxvf inetutils-1.9.4.tar.gz

cd inetutils-1.9.4



sudo make install

telnet rainmaker.wunderground.com


  • Thx !

  • Instructions still work; running Monterey Version 12.2.1 - Ty!

  • Thanks! Working with MacOS 12.6 and inetutils-2.4

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Hi, where is it located?

any suggestions why i cannot copy the telnet application to /usr/bin

Operation not permitted

Can you symlink it?

what do you mean?

Telnet is removed in high sierra due to its a 32bit program 😐. I use ssh now.

Copy the binary somewhere you are able to and symbolically link it to a location in your path, ie

sudo ln -s /path_of_choice/telnet /usr/bin/telnet

..or even expand your PATH to include the location where you copied the telnet binary to, ie add

export PATH=$PATH:/path_of_choice/

....and add it to your .profile or .bash_profile depending on your shell.

I can#t test it since I binned my 10.13 install due to the disk space issue.

it works.thanks