Thursday, September 17, 2009

Ubuntu Internet Software Suite - gFTP

Although BitTorrent is the wave of the future, plenty of Internet sites still require you to download files using the file transfer protocol (FTP). You will often find file repositories for applications, utilities, and other neat stuff on FTP sites. Unfortunately, Ubuntu doesn’t include a graphical FTP client by default, but you can easily add one.

The gFTP program is a popular FTP client for the GNOME desktop environment. It contains a host of advanced features that make it a popular file download program and allow you to

• Download file les simultaneously
• Interrupt and resume transfers
• Download entire directories with a single command
• Choose passive or active downloading
• Drag and drop files between Nautilus and gFTP
• Transfer files securely with SSH and SSH2

You can use the Ubuntu Add/Remove application to download and install the gFTP package. Just go to the Internet section of the Add/Remove application, and you’ll see it listed. After you install gFTP, you can easily download files from FTP repositories on the Internet. Just follow these steps:
1. Click Applications -> Internet -> gFTP. When you install gFTP, Ubuntu creates a link in the Internet menu for it. Clicking the link produces the main gFTP window. By default, gFTP points to your home directory as the local directory (shown in the list box on the left).

2. Enter the hostname of the remote FTP server in the Host drop-down box, the username in the User drop-down box, and the password in the Pass drop-down box. If you’ve connected to a host previously, its hostname and user login name appears in the drop-down boxes. You can select these from the list.

3. When the remote FTP session starts, a list of files and folders available appears in the list box at the right.

4. Find and select the file(s) you want to download by clicking in the list box on the right. Double-clicking a folder opens it and displays the contents of the folder. From the list box on the left, select the folder to download the file(s) to, then click the left-pointing arrow to transfer them.

5. When finished, click the icon next to the hostname to disconnect and end the FTP session.

It’s as simple as that. Using a graphical FTP client makes transferring lots of files via FTP almost painless.

Although it’s true that Ubuntu doesn’t include a graphical FTP client by default, it does provide a command-line FTP client in the default installation. Open a Terminal session by selecting Applications -> Accessories -> Terminal, then type ftp at the command prompt. The ftp> command-line prompt appears, waiting for you to enter commands.
The command-line FTP client allows you to send FTP commands directly to a remote FTP server. The most common commands you’ll need to use are

• open: establishes a connection with a remote host
• binary: sets the transfer mode for binary (application) files
• ascii: sets the transfer mode for text files
• cd: changes directories on the remote host
• put: sends a file to the remote host
• get: retrieves a file from the remote host
• close: closes the connection with the remote host
• exit: stops the FTP command line client and returns to the command prompt

You can also write scripts to use the FTP command-line client automatically. This feature allows you to schedule a file download for late at night when network bandwidth might not be at a premium.

Source of Information : Wiley Ubuntu Linux Secrets

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