How to Connect Your cPanel with FTP Client

WinSCP FTP connection tutorial

For those who don’t know what FTP client it, I have written a detailed article about different types of FTP in my previous entry. As a summary, FTP is an acronym for File Transfer Protocol. It allows you to transfer files between your computer and the cPanel and WHM server. In order for you to be able to use FTP your server administrator will need to enable it for your cPanel account.

 

Also you need to create an FTP account before you can transfer any files. To create an account login to cPanel. You should see the option for FTP under the files header, as seen in the screenshot below.

 

cPanel FTP guide

Click on FTP accounts as indicated in the image above. This will lead you to FTP accounts interface where you can create and manage FTP users for your cPanel account, as shown in the image below.

FTP account creation guide

I already have two FTP accounts on this cPanel so I’m not going to create any one in this guide. Fill the form as shown above with the relevant details that you would want to use and click on the blue “Create FTP Account” button as shown above. Ensure to use a strong password or simply click on Password Generator as shown on the image above. If you use the Password Generator, be sure to save your password somewhere because it’s not something you can remember.

 

As a quick guide, the login field should be where you enter your username, select the domain name if you have different domain on your cPanel, enter a password or generate one, and finally click on Create FTP Account.

 

Now that you have created your FTP account, you can view the account under the FTP accounts section below. You can change the account password, quota, or delete the account. If you click on Configure FTP client, the interface will expands to display the FTP server connection details, as shown in the image below.

 

Note: Your FTP Username, FTP server URL should appear at the top. It is this information you’d use to connect your cPanel with FTP client. I have masked mine for security reasons. 

FTP configuration guide

 

You can manually enter the connection details for your FTP client, or you can download a configuration file for one of the two listed FTP clients as shown in the image above.

 

The most popular FTP client is FileZilla but I use but I personally prefer winSCP because of its option for Secure FTP.

 

To use WinSCP, search on Google or your favorite search engine or visit the official website (https://winscp.net/) to download it. Once installed, open it and you should see an interface like the screenshot below.

 

WinSCP FTP connection tutorial

 

As stated earlier, before you can connect to your cPanel with FTP client, you’re going to need a few key pieces of information, your FTP URL, the username, the password, and the default remote directory. I’m sure you have all of that saved up when you created the FTP account.

 

So fill in the fields as shown in the screenshot above. WinSCP has five different protocol, namely: SFTP, SCP, FTP, WebDAV, and Amazon S3. The SFTP will be selected by default. You can change it to FTP, but it’s recommended you use SFTP especially if you are transferring sensitive data. You can learn more about the different types of FTP protocols here.

 

Each of the protocol has its port. For example, the SFTP uses port 22 while FTP uses 21. Don’t worry, any protocol you select, the corresponding port required will be selected automatically, for example, WebDAV uses port 80.

 

As stated above, my recommendation would be to use SFTP because it provides just as much security as FTPS, but only requires you to open port 22. Enter all the required details in the relevant fields and click Login to connect to a server. Once you’re connected, you should see an interface like the one in the image below. Note that I’ve masked out some information for security reasons.

A guide to accessing server using FTP client

Now that we’ve connected to your server, you can browse your local or remote site for your files or folders for transferring between the two locations. You can right click the file or folder and select Upload. Use the upload icon or click and drag the file or folder across the two interface. To download a file or folder from your server to your device you can use the exact same methods.

You can access all the files in your website by opening the public_html folder. You can do that by double-clicking just like you’d do in your local computer.

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