File Transfer Protocol & Anonymous FTP:-

Both Microsoft's Internet Explorer and Netscape incorporate an easy to use FTP (File Transfer Protocol) agent for downloading files. Usually, if you can locate the file you want by following hypertext links, all you have to do is click on it to start the download. If you have problems, or a site specifically instructs you to use an FTP agent with specific login & username requirements, you may need a separate FTP agent (or client).

FTP agents can be used to transfer files both ways - to and from the Internet. You will need the right type of access on the relevant server to be able to log in, and you will only be able to transfer files to and from certain directories. Most ftp servers allow anonymous logins to the public directories and may allow download (get files) from all accessible directories, but may only allow you to upload (send files) to specific directories, or may not allow upload at all.

The currently accepted procedure for what is termed "anonymous login", is to use the word "anonymous" as your name or user id, and your e-mail address as your password (eg ... although password may be optional). If a specific site instructs you to use a different procedure, follow their instructions, after all, it's their server, their files, and they write the rules for their system!

If, for example, you are developing a "Home Page" on our server, you will need to transfer the relevant files to our Internet Web Server for them to be available on the web. In this case, you will need to use your username as your user id (eg aname) and your internet password as the password for the FTP agent.

Ws_ftp is a freeware ftp agent for Windows, available freely for non-commercial use. Fetch is a shareware FTP agent available for the Macintosh.

Off course you can always enter "FTP software" (or similar key words) into any of the search engines to look for other alternatives.

There are ways to FTP files by e-mail. This is an advanced topic beyond the scope and intent of this tutorial, so is left as an exercise for the reader.

HINT: Don't worry if your "password" displays as a string of ****** or some other character, or doesn't display at all - it's quite normal (with occasional exceptions) for programs to use this as a security measure (eg: in case someone is looking over your shoulder etc).

Remember, you can also use your back icon to step back to the previous screen, or the Go History option to select a previous page out of sequence.


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