Sunday, May 4, 2008

My New, Easy-to-Use, Mac ftp Client

"Can you show me how to do ftp on my Mac?"

That was the question from my pal, Spider, which popped up in my "chat-in-gmail" window yesterday afternoon.


I don't happen to know the GUI Mac ftp clients, but that's no barrier. Just go to the "ftp://" URL in firefox. Works for me.

For her, it hangs.

Back to basics. Let's see if she has /usr/bin/ftp.

"Open a terminal window."

"How do I do that?"

Now she's fumble-fingering things because of time pressure. Turns out she's asking for help in a panic, because she's got to get out the door and she needs to retrieve some publications from the web.

I have a Mac next to me, so now I'm trying everything out before I tell her, so as not to miss any steps.

She has ftp. Good. She can make the connection. Good. She miss-types a few things, but finally gets in. Good. Something's still not working. She's ready to give up.

"Wait," I say. "I know how to do this."

I do the ftp. I attach the files to an email message. I send it to her.

"Thank you, honey," she says, as she prints them and heads out the door.

I think I'll call it jftp: Jeff-tp.

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