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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Web-based FTP?

You may think FTP is old technology and replaced by cloud storage already. However, FTP is still widely used and widely distributed with IIS web server or Apache web server. Just the other day, saw some discussion on web based FTP, which is around whether it is possible to upload files to FTP server over a web browser.

The answer may be yes, but it is not FTP.

To get it to work, first the file has to be uploaded over HTTP/HTTPS to sit on the web server. After that, a FTP client has to be invoked to send the file to FTP server. It is  a two-leg operation to combine HTTP and FTP together.

Since there are two different stage of the operation, whether or not the backend storage is FTP server is not important, because the FTP client is not exposed to the end user. In this case, it can be completely replaced with better technology and newer HTTP/AJAX techniques.

So we are talking about Web-based FTP alternative solution. Welcome Gladinet Cloud Enterprise.

When FTP was invented, we didn’t see so many client device choices such as iOS and Android, and most importantly, the web browser. Nowadays, people have smart phones, have web browsers and web browsers are capable of HTML5 drag and drops. It is important to be able to support all the devices.

Also when there are files and folders at a central place, there is always a need for controlled access with permissions. Simple things like who can access what file and who can upload to what folder.

This is when Gladinet Cloud Enterprise comes in.

On one hand, it is similar to a FTP server in the sense of that it builds on top of file server, providing means to send/receive files over the Internet.

On the other hand, it is much more than a FTP server to support mobile devices, web clients, in addition to the traditional PC and Mac clients. It also extends the concept of team folder and permission control over to the remote file and folder access.

This in general falls into the FTP Server Replacement use case.

For more details, visit http://www.gladinet.com/CloudEnterprise/

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