What Is FTP?

How Do I Use It?

Updated: April 16, 2019
By: RSH Web Editorial Staff
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FTP is an acronym that stands for File Transfer Protocol

A program that allows you to transfer files from one computer to another

In the case of creating a web site, this means that if you created your web pages for your website on your computer, either using a text editor or some other Web page editor, then you will need to transfer those pages to the Web Server where your website is being hosted
FTP is the easiest way to do this

There are many different FTP clients that you can download for free or paid versions
Some of the more popular ones are:
WinSCP
Cyberduck
FireFTP [Firefox extension]
Transmit for Mac
Free FTP by Coffee House
5. FileZilla
WS_FTP Professional [Commercial FTP client for Windows]
SmartFTP
You may upload your files directly from within cPanel by using the File Transfer Manager

Using Your FTP Client

This is general information for any FTP client. Yours may be slightly different, but all normally need the same info to work properly

Start your FTP client. You will see several different boxes that will need to be filled out

The first is normally the Profile Name. This is simply a label to give to this particular website

Next box is the Host Name or Address. This is normally your Domain Name or IP numbers of your website. If you are not sure ask your Hosting Provider. It will look something like this: [ftp.domain-name.com]

The other information are your User ID and Password. These are again normally the same as the user-name and password that you gave when you signed up for the hosting service

You may want to click on the button that saves your password so you will not have to type it every time

Once you have your settings filled out click "Connect" or "OK". You will know this is complete when files from your Website show up on the right side of the screen

You may want to set up the folders on your Web Hosting service exactly the same as you set them up on your computer so you will always remember to send your files to the correct folders

Transferring Files

The left side of the screen are the files on your computer. Find the file that you want to transfer by double-clicking on the folders until you get to your file

The right side of the screen are the files on the Web Hosting server. Go to the folder you want to transfer your files to

You can either double click on the file you are transferring, you can Right-Click - Upload-File, or single click on it and then click on the arrow that points to the right side of the screen. which ever way, you will now have a file on your hosting server

To move a file from the Web Hosting server to your computer do the same thing except click on the arrow that points to the left side of the screen or Right-Click -Download-File

You can also view, rename, delete and move your files around. If you need to create a new folder for your files you can do that too by clicking on MkDir or Right-Click - New-Directory

Most all FTP Clients have a built in Text editor where you can edit your files or web pages by hand

For a text editor we recommend NotePad++


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