The 5 Minute FTP Wizardry Tutorial
The sole aim of this article is to take you from total newbie to being able to upload files to your web hosting account in the next five minutes.
Now of course there is plenty more to learn than is covered in this article but the basic skills you'll learn will enable you to upload files quickly and easily and have a functioning website in a matter of minutes.
So let's get your website online...
1) Get Some FTP Software
To upload files from your home computer to your web hosting account so everyone else can see them by visiting your website you'll need some FTP software. FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol and is simply the name of this uploading process.
Some web hosting control panels come with FTP software built in so check this first of all as you may not have to download any new software.
Otherwise there are numerous pieces of free or low cost FTP software available which are all very simple to use.
A few options are:
In my opinion all these pieces of sftware are very similar so just opt for the one you find easiest to use.
I personally use SmartFTP and have done for some years with great success.
Download and install the software on your home computer then we're ready to get uploading your files.
2) Enter Your Web Hosting Details
Open up the software and enter the location, username and password for FTP access which you will either find in the welcome email your web host sent you when you opened your account or in your web host's control panel.
Typically you enter these details at the top of the FTP software when you open it up and the software will then save those details for future reference so you only need enter them once.
Once you've entered those details into your FTP software, click the connect button, and wait to see that it manages to establish a connection to your server.
It should do so within a few seconds but if not go back and double-check you have entered the correct FTP details. Your FTP details may be different to the details of how to log into your control panel etc. so you may have several password/username sets and it's not unusual for new users to enter the wrong set of details.
3) Change Upload Parameters
If your FTP software has a "passive" mode, turn it off.
Then find the section where you choose whether to upload files in ASCII or binary format, and select the "auto" or "automatic" function so you don't need to worry about learning which file types should be uploaded in which format.
4) Upload Your Files
You're all ready to go now.
Select the files from your home computer that you want to upload to your hosting account, and select to upload them now.
You can select to upload them one at a time, or select a whole host of files by holding down your 'shift' or 'control' key and highlighting a number of different web page files.
You should see a progress report from your FTP software as it uploads each file, one at a time.
Furthermore, as they load fully onto your web hosting account you should see them appear on the right-hand side of the software, together with their file size.
Pay attention to any file showing a zero file size, as this was likely corrupted in the upload process and you will need to upload another copy to be certain it is working correctly.
5) Final Check
Lastly visit your website with your internet browser (such as Internet Explorer) and check to make sure all your files are there as they should be.
Incase of any problems, just follow the procedure again incase your files got corrupted in the upload process (which does occasionally happen).
6) Job Done!
Well done, now you know the basics of how to use FTP software to upload web page files from your home computer to your web hosting account!
About the Author:
Richard Adams has been building websites, launching online businesses and advising others how to do the same for over 5 years. His latest site provides free information on small business web hosting -> http://www.smallbusinesswebhostingguide.com