Upload file to remote server using FTP and SFTP Client - Windows, Mac, Linux

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In this tutorial we will learn about FTP and SFTP to upload our website code to the hosting server.

In the previous tutorial we set the nameservers and in this tutorial we will learn about some softwares that we can use to upload our website code to the hosting server.


FTP or File Transfer Protocol is a commonly used protocol to transfer files. There are softwares using FTP to upload files to a server from a user's computer.

We also have SFTP which is SSH (Secure SHell) or Secure File Transfer Protocol which is similar to FTP but secured and works over secured connection.

Following are some of the softwares that we can use to upload our website code to the hosting server.


FileZilla is the free FTP solution and is available for all platforms. It has a very simple UI (user interface). All we have to do is enter the Host, Username and Password and we are logged in to the server. It provides a drag-and-drop interface so you can easily drag a file from your computer and drop it into the server's section for upload.

On the left side you will see the drives, directories and files from your computer and on the right side you will see directories and files on the remote server.

How to connect?

In this example we will be using FileZilla to connect to a remote server (hosting server) from our computer. The process and steps we learn in this example can be applied to other FTP softwares mentioned in this tutorial.

First we need to open FileZilla and then go to File and select Site Manager.

Now click on New Site and give it a name. Then at the right side under General tab fill the Host like www.example.com or the Host you got from the hosting provider.

Then select the appropriate Protocol like FTP or SFTP.

Next, set the Logon Type to Normal then enter the User and Password.

Host, User and Password will be provided by your hosting provider when you sign up.

On connect to the server and you will get the following. On the left side we have our computer files and directories and on the right side we have the files and directories of the server.

Now we can drag and drop files and folders that we want to upload to the server.


Cyberduck is an open source FTP client for both Mac and Windows and its more that just a FTP or SFTP client. As per their website the software does a lot of things.

Cyberduck is a libre FTP, SFTP, WebDAV, Amazon S3, OpenStack Swift, Backblaze B2, Microsoft Azure & OneDrive, Google Drive and Dropbox browser for Mac and Windows.

Courtesy: Cyberduck website

Image courtesy: Cyberduck

It will list all the FTPs, SFTPs, Google Drive, Amazon S3 etc connections you have added. It has drag-and-drop easy to use interface.


WinSCP is a free FTP and SFTP software for Windows to connect with a server and transfer file from your computer to the hosting server.

Image courtesy: WinSCP

On the left side we get the directories and files from our computer and on the right side we get the directories and files on the server.


Transmit by Panic.com is another FTP application and for Mac computers. It is a PAID software so do check their website for latest pricing. They also provide WebDAV and Amazon S3 support.

Image courtesy: Transmit by Panic.com

Similar to the other FTP application this provides easy to use interface. You can easily connect to your server by entering the credentials.

Which one to use?

If you are starting out and don't want to spend money on the FTP applications then consider using FileZilla. It is FREE and available for all platforms like Windows, Mac and Linux.

I have used FileZilla and Cyberduck on Windows and Mac and they both are amazing FREE softwares and gets the job done.

If you want to invest money then prefer checking Transmit for Mac or CuteFTP for Windows.

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