Browse Prior Art Database

Transfer structured files via FTP

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000132487D
Original Publication Date: 2005-Dec-19
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2005-Dec-19
Document File: 2 page(s) / 7K

Publishing Venue

IBM

Abstract

The FTP protocol is designed to transfer either binary files without any character translation, or text files where characters are translated according to a given translation table. Files that contain a mixture of both, binary and text data, are not considered. This disclosure describes an approach to support this structured type of file by FTP.

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Transfer structured files via FTP Transfer structured files via FTPTransfer structured files via FTP Transfer structured files via FTP

The FTP protocol [1] is designed to transfer either binary files without any character translation, or text files where characters are translated according to a given translation table. Files that contain a mixture of both, binary and text data, are not considered. This disclosure describes an approach to support this structured type of file by FTP.

    Disclosed is an enhancement to FTP servers to support files that do not entirely consist of binary or text data. A meta file is used to describe the layout of a given data record. Hereby each data record consists of multiple data fields, where each data field has an offset within the record, a length, a data type and a data value. Using this meta file, a structured file can be transferred correctly by either transferring a given data field in binary or text. On the target platform, the data can be stored as a human readable file, e.g. plain text or HTML, as an XML file, or as a CSV-file (comma separated values), which can be read by any standard spreadsheet program. Vice versa, XML- and CSV-files can be uploaded into a structured file by using the same meta file.

    The idea of this disclosure is adding new functionality to a FTP server by introducing new parameters of the FTP SITE command and translating a transferred file on field basis instead of record or even file basis . Introducing a third type of file in the FTP protocol and adding FTP server functionality to handle this type of file correctly would be equivalent. The technique of describing a record layout by a meta file is not part of this disclosure.

    IBM* mainframe operating systems z/OS* and z/VSE* [2] provide a data access method called VSAM (Virtual Storage Access Method). VSAM files can be plain text files, binary files, or a mixture of both. Like table rows in a relational database, a given VSAM data record typically consists of multiple data fields having different data types, text or binary, where...