FTP Uploading with your Browser

Let’s start of by explaining some terms and abbreviations. FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. A protocol is mostly a set of rules by which a networks of computers communicate. Thus, FTP is the language by which computers on the Internet share files.

Every website owner uses an FTP account at any time or another, whether he knows it or not. When looking for a web host, you might have seen that some hosts provide FTP uploading. That is exactly what is explained here. When you sign up for the hosting, your host provides you with your FTP details (explained later). These are used to log into your account. Once you’ve logged into the account, you can upload the files of your website.

There are quite a few different ways in which you can access FTP. The most simple method, which we will also discuss here, is by simply using your browser. Other steps include using software such as CuteFTP. Most new web design programs also come with built-in FTP tools.

FTP login sessions explained

Logging into an FTP account works basically on the same way as other login sessions, like Yahoo! Mail, for instance. The process is the same, you type an address in the address bar, insert a username and password, and voila – you’re connected. But how does the nuts and bolts work?

There are three basic criteria in the basic FTP login process. They are the following:

  • Site name: [ftp://anything.com]
  • Username: yourname
  • Password: ******

Let me explain this. Look at the first line. This is the “URL” of the FTP server, just like the URL of any normal website. The second and third lines are the username and password (account details) that your host gave you.

When you enter the username and password to login to the server, you are doing exactly the same as when you check your Yahoo! Mail. After you’ve logged in, you can change and modify the contents of your folder, just like the mail. And the next time you login, you will find it exactly as you left it.

Logging in

Here’s the process for logging into your FTP account using a web browser.

Step 1

Enter the URL for the FTP server that your host provided into the address bar of your browser. This will typically start with [ftp://..].

Step 2

If the connection is good, a dialogue box will appear, requesting your username and password. You know what to do! Go ahead, enter them, and press the “Login” key (or Enter, whatever).

Step 3

If all went well, you should now see in your browser what you will normally see in ‘My Computer’ or ‘My Documents’ (in Windows). Your browser has changed into a folder – your FTP folder. Now you can upload your pages into the folder.

First, open ‘My Computer’ or ‘Windows Explorer’ in a separate window, and locate the files of your website on your hard drive. Once you have them in view, select all the ones that you want to upload and press Ctrl + C (to copy them). Now, go back to the browser, right-click anywhere in the FTP folder, and select Paste from the drop-down menu.

If all went well, your browser should now show you an estimated progress of the uploading. Once you see this, you can sit back, relax, and wait for the uploading to finish. To exit the FTP account, simply carry on surfing!

If there are any files in the account that you do not want, or if you want to replace old files with new ones, simply select the ones you would like to delete, and press, well… Delete! It’s as simple as that.

That’s about all there is to FTP uploading via your browser. If you want to automate things a little, try using some FTP software, such as CuteFTP.

If this article was of any value to you, visit [http://deweloper.webs.io], which hosts many more articles and tutorials on web development.

Thank you for reading my article!