Saturday, July 23, 2011

How to use FTP filesystem on Ubuntu using CurlFtpFS

Some web hosting company do not offer shell access (SSH or Telnet) to your shared hosting account for security reasons, making it a bit harder for you to do regular file maintenance for your web account. Although the use of regular FTP client is adequate for most cases, some people still prefer to manipulate files directly using standard Unix tools (probably because of old habits).
Fortunately, there's CurlFtpFS which allow you to mount remote ftp account as a standard filesystem on your Linux operating system.
Using CurlFtpFS
First of all you need to install CurlFtpFS, which in case of Ubuntu or Debian based operating system is to run 'sudo apt-get install curlftpfs'.
Alternatively, you can use Synaptic to install CurlFtpFS.
Assuming you've successfully installed curlftpfs, all you need to do in order to mount ftp locally is to to run these commands.
mkdir hostr
sudo curlftpfs -o allow_other host
user:pass is the username and password to log into ftp account.
After that, you can change your working directory to the mount-point and use the regular unix utilities to work on the files that normally accessible on the FTP protocol. After you're done, you can unmount it by running the usual "sudo umount [mountpoint]" command
Using CurlFtpFS in fstab
You can add curlftpfs to fstab for automatic mounting by using this line : /mnt/host fuse rw,uid=500,user,noauto 0 0
Note: Please refer to CurlFtpFS website for further reference.
Thanks for reading this post, hopefully this will get you started to use curlftpfs FTP based filesystem in your Linux operating system.

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