FileZilla Client is a free, open source FTP client developed and distributed under the GNU General Public License. It supports FTP (over SSL/TLS), SFTP and FTPS protocols. Initially designed to work only under Windows, but, since its version 3.0.0, by the use of wxWidgets, it became multi-platform thus being available also for other operating systems, including Linux, FreeBSD and MacOS X. Nowadays FlieZilla is in its 18.104.22.168 version, and it occupies the 5th place among all times most popular downloads at SourceForge.net.
Today I'm going to tell you about its most outstanding features and functions.
A Little Bit Of Introduction
For those who have never heard of FTP or any of those ''strange'' acronyms I wrote above, I can tell you that FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol, which is a network protocol used to exchange and handle files over a TCP network, like the Internet TCP (Transmission Control Protocol). An FTP client uses the FTP protocol to connect to an FTP server in order to transfer files to/from that remote server. Finally, SSL (Secure Socket Layer) and TLS (Transport Layer Security) are cryptographic protocols that bring security and data integrity for those connections or communications between FTP client and server preventing eavesdropping, tampering, and message forgery.
As a curiosity, I must tell you that FileZilla development was started in January 2001 by Tim Kosse and two classmates as a project for their computer science class.
Introduction done, let's see what FileZilla brings. At first sight we find that FileZilla has really simple and easy-to-understand interface which looks much like in the style of an ordinary file manager, with no graphic stridencies, really intuitive and easy.
Besides its resources consumption is really low, as you can see in the next screen capure, it is as little as 18MB even while performing the download of a file from mozilla's FTP site.
FileZilla main features are: Site Manager, Message Log, and Transfer Queue. The site manager allows us to create a list of FTP sites with their connection data, such as the port number to use, or if we use anonymous or normal login. For normal login, the username is saved and optionally the password too. This feature help us not avoid loading the FTP server addresses every time we want to connect.
The site we are currently connected to can be seen in the Quickconnectbar.
Below this bar we can find the Message Log window, here is where messages are displayed. It displays commands sent by FileZilla and the remote server responses in the form of a console.
And located below the Message Log there is the file and folder visualization window, it provides a graphical interface for files and folders management. We can navigate through folders and view and alter their contents on the local machine as well as in the remote interface by the use of a tree-type navigation. The interesting thing about it is that we are able to drag and drop files between local and remote computers launching the transference in an automated way.
Last but not least, we have the Transfer Queue, located at the bottom of the interface, it shows status of each queued or active file transference in real-time, in its tabbed window we can also see the finished transferences.
Furthermore, FileZilla supports connections through proxy servers and firewalls, allowing resumption of interrupted downloads and uploads (if the server supports this function).
Now, FileZilla is able to handle symbolic links on servers, so in case we are trying to access a symbolic link, FileZilla is going to, in first place, make an attempt to execute the CWD command into it, and if that action fails, will treat it as a file. While executing recursive operations, it will avoid following all found directory links, however, file links will be downloaded.
As you can see, FileZilla has no secrets, it is solid, stable and really powerful, in fact it was intended for being easy to use and understand no matters if we are experienced users or beginners.
Do you use FlieZilla for your FTP transferences? We really want to know what you think about it, please drop a line with your opinion in the comments section below.
Author: Lucas Artigas Review on: Filezilla 3.0