FTP is an abbreviation of File Transfer Protocol , it is the main network protocol used for downloading/uploading of files from one host to another using a TCP based network like Internet.

FTP works on a principle of client-server model and uses data connection between client and server. FTP basically runs on port no 21 as default.

FTP history

Short for File Transfer Protocol, FTP was first proposed on April 16, 1971 by Abhay Bhushan for and developed for implementation on hosts at MIT. FTP was later defined by RFC 959 that was published in 1985.

How it Works?

When you want to copy files between two computers that are on the same local network, often you can simply “share” a drive or folder, and copy the files the same way you would copy files from one place to another on your own PC.

What if you want to copy files from one computer to another that is halfway around the world? File transfers over the Internet use special techniques, of which one of the oldest and most widely-used is FTP.  FTP, short for “File Transfer Protocol,” can transfer files between any computers that have an Internet connection, and also works between computers using totally different operating systems.

Transferring files from a client computer to a server computer is called “uploading” and transferring from a server to a client is “downloading”.

Requirements for using FTP

  1. An FTP client like Auto FTP Manager installed on your computer
  2. Certain information about the FTP server you want to connect to:
    a.  The FTP server address. This looks a lot like the addresses you type to browse websites.
    Example : Server address is “ftp.abc.net”.
    Sometimes the server address will be given as a numeric address, like “64.185.225.87”.
    b.  A username and password.  Some FTP servers let you connect to them anonymously.
    For anonymous connections, you do not need a username and password.

To transfer files, provide your client software (Auto FTP Manager) with the server address, username, and password.  After connecting to the FTP server, you can use Auto FTP Manager’s File Manager to upload, download and delete files.  Using the File Manager is a lot like working with Windows Explorer.

Have a look How to use File Manager and FileZilla to transfer the files?

What port is FTP?

FTP uses network ports 20 and 21. Below are other ports that may be used by other types of FTP.

  • BFTP uses port 152
  • FTP over TSL/SSL uses ports 989 and 990
  • NI FTP uses port 47
  • RSFTP uses port 26
  • SFTP uses port 115
  • TFTP uses port 69

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