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Graphic + Internet related tutorials . . . Using WS_FTP ©

WS_FTP LE 95© is free to download (different versions for different operating systems) and use if you meet certain conditions of use. There is also a "Pro" version. I'm going to tell you about the free one (LE), but they both operate pretty much the same.

This tutorial is written for the person who has never done this before, so the language may seem too 'simplistic', but I hope to be able to help the 'newbie' (we ALL were, once! *grin*).

First, if you need it, get WS_FTP here. Follow it's instructions for installing, I did it by myself, and had NO problems. When you start the program, a 2-part screen will pop up, along with this one (shown below). Fill in the info here first, then we can deal with the larger one.

WS_FTP Session Properties - General Tab Information General Tab (connect button will bring up:)

  • Profile Name:
    can be anything. 'my geo website', 'Linda's Website', or whatever you want. If you have several accounts that you will be FTP'ing files to - then name this one you can easily identify. That arrow to the right of the box is a drop down menu so you can choose which account and files you will be ftp'ing with right now.
  • Host Name/Address: ftp.tripod.com, ftp.geocities.com (or whoever your host is - get that information from your web host).
  • Host Type: If your web host doesn't specify what that should be set at, then set it at Auto Detect - for now. If it changes to something else when you are using the program, that's fine, leave it be.
  • User ID: Your webhost's membername, or whatever they tell you to put in there, it varies by host.
  • Password: Type it in, the program "shows" ***'s where your password is typed in to keep it private from others that may be using the same computer.
  • Click in the "Save Password" square

  • Advanced Tab ~ very easy here:

    WS_FTP Session Properties - Advanced Tab Information  

  • Connection Retry:
    you can choose up to 40, but start with 2 or three. When WS_FTP can't make a connection because the Internet or your web host is busy, you don't want to wait while it tries 40 times!!
  • Network Timeout: VERY IMPORTANT, set this to 120. Geo (or any free web host) is a very busy place and you want this one up to the max!
  • Remote Port: will be set at 21, leave that alone, that's what it should be.
  • Passive Transfers: check with your web host to know whether it should be checked or not. For most free hosts, it will NOT be checked.
  • Those are the only two tabs that you need to input any information - unless you're in a firewall situation. There, you will have to ask your system administrator for the information you need for WS_FTP.

    The WS_FTP screen is a two-section system, almost identical on both sides.

    The main parts of the WS_FTP screen
    WS_FTP screen - uploading files
  • A  If your files are in folders on your computer, you click on the green "up directory" arrow so you can manuver to your folders. To open any folder, just double click on it. The files in that folder will be listed in the Local System section.
  • B  The "upload files" arrow. You can also use the arrow above that to download files from your webhost to your computer as well.
  • C  File transfer mode. You can click on the "Auto" (automatic detection as to kind of files) radio button. You can also choose ASCII for HTML and text files, or Binary for images and zipped files.
  • D  Buttons along the bottom. Mostly self explanatory - and if you need help, that's there too: click the 'HELP' button!!

  • On the toolbar at the bottom of the screen, click on the "Options" button,
    Choose Options button from bottom of WS_FTP screen buttons
    and start with the tab for "Session".

    Options - Session

    Session Tab - in Options
  • If you have already connected to the host, leave the Host Type set at what WS_FTP detected. If you haven't, set it to Automatic Detect. Or, if you know your host server is a Unix, try Unix Standard.
  • Check "Update Directories After Transfer" and "Show Transfer Progress Dialog". You can watch it while it transfers files and will know when it is finished.
  • If you need to convert extensions,
    .htm -> .html
    or force lower case
    FILE.GIF -> file.gif,
    to make your files match your html document, do.

  • The Session Cont'd tab

    Options - Sessions Cont'd
  • Do NOT check
    "Send Unique" or
    "Receive Unique".
  • If using W3.1 and want to use long filenames, you can check the "Prompt for Destination Names" and it will give a pop-up box to rename each file you upload.
  • If you want WS_FTP to auto-detect files for uploading, check here. For most people this is easiest, the program will upload ASCII files in ASCII mode, and will upload binary files (images, zipped files, etc.) in binary mode. To *USE* this feature, see the next screen, it is important to *tell* the program which files are ASCII files.

  • The Extensions tab

    Options - Extensions Tab
    Here is where you tell WS_FTP which files to upload as ASCII

    Most common are: htm, html, txt, map, js, perl, cgi, ram. They are not case sensitive, txt is same as TXT

    Type in an extension, like: .html, click "Add". Do the next one, and so on.
    The tab for "Convert" (tab next to 'extensions') works the same way. If you need to convert your computer's .htm files to .html, you can select that option here and your files will be automatically converted as they are uploaded.

    The rest of the tabs and options can be set to your preferences, how WS_FTP looks and operates for personal preferences. On each screen there is a help button, and the help files are very good and will explain WS_FTP's options well. Save the settings by clicking "OK".

    THIS screen will be the first one that shows on the left hand side when you start the WS_FTP program. Don't worry - after it connects, you can double click on the green arrow at the top of that file listing to manuver through your computer's files so you can reach the folder where your webpage files are.
    WS_FTP screen - left half - first one showing when program is opened What will be showing in the right side of the screen will be your files in your main directory at Geocities (or whoever your webhost is). If you have subdirectories, those will show as folders at the top of the list, and all the "loose files" will be listed below the subdirectories.

    Once you have gotten to the correct folder of your files, you can upload them one at a time, or in groups of files. Click on the first file name that you want to upload. It will become highlighted. Click the "upload arrow" (B in the image below) and the file will upload. Takes a few seconds, but you should see that it was successful by the report that shows near the letter D in the image below. If you want to upload a group of files - click the first one in the list, scroll down, hold the "shift" key, and click on the last one. That will highlight them all. Then click the "upload arrow". When all your files have been received, the screen on the right side will refresh and show your files, including the new ones you just added.

    WS_FTP (and CuteFTP too) has buttons for both your Local Directory and the Remote System Directory that allows you to: Change Directory (I use the green "up directory" arrows), Make Directories, View files, Exec, Rename, Delete, Refresh, and Directory Info.

    That's about it! At least it will get you started. You can open the WS_FTP screen up to fill your whole monitor - makes it easier to see the file listings.

    Tutorial © 1999 Roxy Flanagan
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    Texture tile background © 1998 Roxy M. Flanagan.

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