Vsftpd setup "Server unexpectedly closed network connection"

My goal is to run a small secure ftp service for virtual users on an Ubuntu 12.04 EC2 server.

I’ve followed the guide and exposed the necessary ports.

When I started the service I didn’t get an error message and nothing appeared in the error log or in the syslog but the service failed to start:

~/vsfptd $ sudo service vsftpd start vsftpd start/running, process 16103 ~/vsfptd $ sudo netstat -lpn | grep -E ":21|:990|:20" ~/vsfptd $
I knew something was probably up with the configuration but what?

Here is what I did:
Invoking vsftpd directly on the configuration file allowed ne to see the error:
In my case:

~/vsfptd $ sudo vsftpd /etc/vsftpd.conf 500 OOPS: SSL: cannot load RSA private key
Even though this key is in use for https on the server it seems vsftpd does not like it (I checked the permissions so that the ftp user could access the file). I’ve temporarily reset vsftpd.conf to use the snakeoil certificates so vsftpd starts.

However, now when I use Filezilla to attempt access it just reports “Server unexpectedly closed network connection” Nothing turns up in /var/log/vsftpd.log but there is an entry in the syslog:

I don’t know what that means and I’m not sure how I can continue to move forwards.

Can anyone help?

My vsftpd.conf contents are:

~/vsfptd $ cat vsftpd.conf | grep -v "^#\|^:space:]]*$" | sort allow_anon_ssl=NO anonymous_enable=NO chroot_list_enable=YES chroot_list_file=/etc/vsftpd.chroot_list chroot_local_user=YES connect_from_port_20=YES debug_ssl=YES dirmessage_enable=YES force_local_data_ssl=YES force_local_logins_ssl=YES ftpd_banner=Welcome to the Evanidus secure FTP service guest_enable=YES hide_ids=YES listen_port=990 listen=YES local_enable=YES local_root=/home/ftp/$USER max_clients=10 pam_service_name=vsftpd.virtual pasv_max_port=12100 pasv_min_port=12000 rsa_cert_file=/etc/apache2/ssl/ssl-cert-snakeoil.pem rsa_private_key_file=/etc/apache2/ssl/ssl-cert-snakeoil.key secure_chroot_dir=/var/run/vsftpd/empty ssl_enable=YES ssl_sslv2=YES ssl_sslv3=YES ssl_tlsv1=YES use_localtime=YES user_sub_token=$USER virtual_use_local_privs=YES write_enable=YES xferlog_enable=YES xferlog_file=/var/log/vsftpd.log