Here is a basic guide to using FTP to upload your web sites. These screen captures outline how to use FireFTP for FireFox while connecting to the PSU web server but the principles are generally the same for any FTP program and web server.
1. Start your FTP program
2. Create and account for easy connection now and later
3. Set up your account with these key settings in the ‘MAIN’ panel
- Account Name: [Name to identify this project , a must have as you accumulate projects and clients
- Category: [Used to bundle different groups of accounts (i.e., School, Clients, etc.)] Not needed for now
- Host: Address for your web server, this will change depending on your hosting company.
- Login: Username + Password [Keep in mind that many hosting servers require an FTP users to be created before you can access via FTP.
4. Settings for the ‘Connection’ panel
- The key setting to look for in this panel and in any FTP program is “Passive Mode”, a lot of hosting servers require this option to be selected.
- This panel also offers you the opportunity to set a local folder and a folder on the server for your workflow. Once this is set correctly your FTP program will jump to those folders when you ‘connect’. It saves a lot of time and folder navigation over time.
- You typically should not need to alter the ‘Port’ or security settings unless your server or client require it.
- Select your account from the list in the upper left corner of the browser window and then select ‘Connect’
- If your connection settings are entered correctly then your web server files should appear in the right panel.
- Keep in mind that will ALL WEB SERVERS there is typically a designated folder for your ‘live’ or ‘public’ html files. For the PSU web server this directory is called ‘public_html’. (other examples are ‘html’ and ‘httpdocs’) this will change depending on the hosting company.
6. Navigate to your LOCAL and REMOTE project folders
- You MUST be very conscious of which folder/files your have selected on the left and right before uploading and downloading. At some point you will have multiple ‘index.html’ files and just as many ‘images’ folders so one slip up and you could overwrite the wrong file when you download or upload.