Use Linux file browser to browse your web hosting server folders via FTP
The File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used to transfer computer files from one host to another host over the Internet. The most common way to transfer files from your computer to your web hosting server and vice versa is using an FTP client whether it’s web based or downloadable. Using FTP has never been easy for Linux users. You can do with your web server what you can do with your hard disk. Things like file browsing, drag-drop, copy-paste, etc.
We are going to use Ubuntu to do the tutorial but this is applicable to any Linux based system.
Let’s get started:
1. Open the terminal window using the application launcher or by clicking Ctrl+Alt+T:
2. In the terminal window you can use your favorite file manager. Here, we are using the default Ubuntu file manager which is called Nautilus.
Replace the username with the username for your FTP server and ftp.server.com with the URL for your FTP server. If you are using SFTP, you can replace ftp with sftp. If you can connect anonymously you can remove the username@ part.
3. The file manager will display this dialog box asking for the password if there is any. Type it and go on.
4. Congratulations, now you are connected to your hosting server via FTP. You can copy, cut and paste file from your hard disk to your server, drag and drop files and folders on the server or do whatever you want smoothly and easily.
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Firstly, you should NEVER use FTP. It is insecure, and no longer fit for purpose. A better option on Linux (if you wish t “drag ‘n drop” deploy to a server) is to use SFTP (Secure FTP):
1. Open the Nautilus file manager.
2. Press CTRL + L (so change to “address bar” mode).
3. Now, in the address bar, enter: sftp://[email protected]
4. Enter your credentials if prompted to do so.
In step 3 above, you can omit ‘username’ if the username on your computer is the same as your username on the server.
Better still, if you want to set up public/private key authentication, you will not be prompted for credentials at all. To do this, the first step is to create your public/private key pair. You must always keep your private key private. Never share it!
1. ssh-keygen -t rsa
2. Accept the defaults.
3. Result will be id_rsa (your private key) and id_rsa.pub (your public key) in ~/.ssh/
4. Copy your public key to the server.
5. Add your public key to the server’s ~/.ssh/authorized_keys file:
cat id_rsa.pub >> ~/.ssh/authorized_keys
That’s all there is to it. Now, when you ssh or sftp in to the server, key authentication will be used, and you will not be prompted for a username and password each time.
ftp = bad.
sftp = good.
sftp + key auth = double plus good
That is all.