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by Franki

FTP is not something I do much of any more, I’ve swapped all my systems over to SSH due to the un-encrypted nature of normal FTP. (With FTP you are sending your username and password as plain text every time you connect.) But quite often I find myself needing to use FTP to help a client with an script install or something of that nature, so I always make sure I have a suitable FTP client handy. Previously I was using SmartFTP which is a pretty good free FTP client that does all the usual things just fine and so I hadn’t been actively looking for an alternative. Then I discovered though a client that SmartFTP has some issues running on Win98 systems, and so I stopped recommending it to clients and friends. Not only that, but generally I prefer to recommend Open Source applications where possible because I never really know what’s inside closed source applications be they free or otherwise. Then I discovered FireFTP.

FireFTP is a browser extension for the Firefox web browser, possibly the most featured, secure and easy to use web browser available. If you use Firefox already, then all you need to do, is head over to the FireFTP page, click on the “install” link and then follow the prompts.

FireFTP is not a revolutionary new product, it doesn’t do FTP in some weird new extra efficient way. It looks pretty much like all decent FTP clients, with one pane displaying your remote machine, and the other pane displaying the remote servers directory structure. Up and downloading is a simple matter of dragging files from one pane to the other, it allows you to change file permissions (right click on a file and select “properties”), upload as binary or ASCII and all the other usual FTP stuff. So what’s so special about it? I hear you ask. How about this; FireFTP is only a 60kb download, which amounts to about 10 seconds at dial-up speeds. Being only 60kb, it is lean and fast, and doesn’t use a massive about of memory. Even better, it can run in Firefox as an extra tab, meaning that you can have Firefox open with half a dozen web pages open in different tabs, and have a fully functional FTP client open and connected in another tab in Firefox. The last feature of FireFTP that I like is the simple layout and design. If you have ever used any FTP client before, you will not need any help with FireFTP, everything is entirely obvious to even the least experienced among us.
Best of all, FireFTP is totally free, and it is Open Source. Open Source is great because it means that anyone that wants to can look at the source code, modify it to suit themselves, look for bugs or just read it to learn how to program themselves. FireFTP is a program written by programmers working for the love of it, and it shows.

All in all I’d give FireFTP a 8 out of 10. It isn’t perfect, but it’s got my needs covered perfectly. And the size and speed of the program means I can leave it running all day without it slowing down my computer. Also, because it is a Firefox extension, it will run on any operating system that Firefox itself will run on. That means Windows, Linux and Mac can all install the extension, and it will look and work exactly the same for all of them. Highly Recommended.

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  Time  in  Don's  part  of the world is:   July 17, 2018, 9:46 pm
  Time in Franki's part of the world is:   July 18, 2018, 10:46 am
  Don't worry neither one sleeps very long!

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New Windows Virus Alerts
also by sophos.

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