Setting up and using the FTP Interface in cPanel

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Manage FTP accounts

Updated: October 27, 2023
By: RSH Web Editorial Staff

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File Transfer Protocol
FTP may be used to transfer files from one computer system to another or by websites to upload or download files from their hosting accounts.

You can use this feature to create and manage your website files with the File Transfer Protocol or FTP.

FTP means "File Transfer Protocol" and refers to a group of rules that govern how computers transfer files from one system to another over the Internet.

We use an FTP program for the uploading and downloading of files, images, and databases from our website.

You can use your cPanel account’s username and password to log in to FTP.

You can use the File Manager to manage all your website's files, images, upload and download.

Disk Usage

SSH File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) allows you to transfer files over a secure connection.
For more information about SFTP, read cPanel's How To Configure Your SFTP Client documentation.


Add FTP Account

To create an FTP account, perform the following steps:

1) Enter the desired username in the Log In text box.

2) Select the desired domain name from the Domain menu.

3) Enter and confirm the new password in the appropriate text boxes.

4) Enter the FTP account’s home directory.
    Note: The Directory text box defines the new FTP account’s top level of directory access.

5) Enter the disk space quota, or select Unlimited.

6) Click Create FTP Account. The new account will appear in the FTP Accounts table.

FTP Accounts

The FTP Accounts table allows you to manage existing FTP accounts.

Change Password

To change an FTP account’s password, perform the following steps:

1) Click Change Password for the FTP account for which you wish to change the password.

2) Enter and confirm the new password in the Password and Password (again) text boxes.

Change Quota

Remember: If your server uses the ProFTPD FTP server, you cannot use quotas. For more information about your server’s FTP server, contact your hosting provider.

To change an FTP account’s quota, perform the following steps:

1) Click Change Quota for the FTP account for which you wish to change the quota.

2) Enter the disk space quota, or select Unlimited.

3) Click Change Quota.


To remove an FTP account, perform the following steps:

1) Click Delete for the FTP account that you wish to remove.

2) Click the desired deletion option:

3) Delete Account - Remove the FTP account only. This will not remove the files that the FTP account’s home directory contains.

4) Delete Account and Files - Remove the FTP account and all the files that the FTP account’s home directory contains.

Warning: Only use this option with extreme caution. If the FTP account that you delete can access the public_html directory, this option automatically removes the public_html directory and all of its contents, which can break your website.

5) Cancel - Do not delete the account.

Configure FTP Client

You must install an FTP client on your computer before you download and run the configuration script file in step 3 below.

To configure an FTP client, perform the following steps:

1) Click Configure FTP Client for the desired FTP account.

2) Click FTP Configuration File under the desired FTP client’s logo. You can choose between Core FTP and Cyberduck.

3) Open the configuration script file that downloaded to your computer. The FTP client automatically opens, configures itself, and connects to your FTP server.

For instructions, visit the Core FTP website for Windows® computers or the Cyberduck website for macOS® computers.

Special FTP Accounts

The Special FTP Accounts table lists your cPanel account’s primary FTP account and the log access account. The system creates these accounts by default. Unlike other FTP accounts, you cannot modify or delete these accounts. This is because the system links these accounts to administrative aspects of your cPanel account.

Note: To log in to a special FTP account, you must use the account’s FTP configuration file. The system automatically configures the client for these accounts. For more information about FTP client configuration files, read the Configure FTP client section.

Primary FTP account

This account has FTP access to all files in your cPanel account. It also has access to files that exist outside your account’s public_html directory. When logging in to this account, you should always use the SFTP (Secure File Transfer Protocol) protocol.

Log access account

This account lets you download your website’s Raw Access logs. The logs are available in the
/etc/apache2/logs/domlogs/USERNAME directory
Where USERNAME is the log access account’s username. This directory contains the FTP transaction logs for domains on webservers running EasyApache 4.

Anonymous FTP accounts

These accounts allow users to anonymously connect via FTP to access your website’s files. You can manage this access in cPanel’s Anonymous FTP interface
cPanel » Home » Files » Anonymous FTP
When you disable anonymous FTP, the system does not remove these accounts.

This feature is only available if your hosting provider enables it.

FTP Clients

There are many FTP clients that you can choose from. Some are free and some are paid versions.

WinSCP A popular free SFTP and FTP client for Windows

Commander One for Mac, A reliable FTP client for Mac OS

SmartFTP FTP, FTPS, SFTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3 more

CuteFTP transfers files between your PC and remote computers

Free FTP by Coffee House drag-and-drop FTP client that's as powerful as it is user-friendly

Cyberduckfor Mac and Windows with support for FTP, SFTP, OpenStack Swift, Microsoft Azure more

FireFTP [Firefox extension] a free, secure, cross-platform FTP/SFTP client for Mozilla Firefox

Transmit for Mac Transmit now connects to 11 new cloud services, like Box, Google Drive, DreamObjects, Dropbox, more

ForkLift For Mac advanced file manager and FTP client for macOS

FileZilla a free open source FTP and FTPS Server

WS_FTP Professional best-in-class security with the highest levels of encryption

Coffeecup drag-and-drop FTP client that's as powerful as it is user-friendly

FTP Voyager most powerful FTP client program for Windows 9x/Me/NT/2000/XP

cPanel: Uploading files with the File Transfer Manager available through cPanel

For a text editor, we recommend NotePad++. RSH Web used NotePad++ for coding all our web pages.

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