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Not Your Only FTP

If you’re like me, and have been using Dreamweaver’s FTP and no other dedicated FTP program in your workflow, you may find yourself stuck waiting for Dreamweaver to finish uploading or downloading files before you can get back to work. Occasionally Dreamweaver chokes on extra-large files, leaving you no choice but to find another way to upload/download files. Usually when I upload or download a file, it is the perfect time to check email, or grab a snack. At other times, however, I have a lot to do and just don’t want to wait.

What many of us Windows users seem to forget is that we already have other FTP-enabled software installed—software that we use every day—our browsers! That’s right; you can use Internet Explorer or Netscape to access your site’s files. The usual formula is ftp://www.dwkillertips.com, where www.dwkillertips.com is either your domain or IP address. The user is then prompted with a dialog for username and password. But wait, there’s more: ftp://username:password@dwkillertips.com is the formula to bypass that dialog. Just replace username:password@ with the account’s username followed by a colon and then the account password, followed by the @ symbol and then the domain.

This is also handy for providing FTP access to clients who aren’t <gasp/> using Dreamweaver. To make it completely foolproof, you can tack on the directory path at the end like a normal hyperlink, putting your client in exactly the right directory.

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