How to Use Anonymous FTP (RFC1635)
Original Publication Date: 1994-May-01
Included in the Prior Art Database: 2019-Feb-12
Internet Society Requests For Comment (RFCs)
P. Deutsch: AUTHOR [+2]
This document provides information for the novice Internet user about using the File Transfer Protocol (FTP). It explains what FTP is, what anonymous FTP is, and what an anonymous FTP archive site is. This memo provides information for the Internet community. This memo does not specify an Internet standard of any kind.
Network Working Group P. Deutsch Request for Comments: 1635 A. Emtage FYI: 24 Bunyip Category: Informational A. Marine NASA NAIC May 1994
How to Use Anonymous FTP
Status of this Memo
This memo provides information for the Internet community. This memo does not specify an Internet standard of any kind. Distribution of this memo is unlimited.
This document provides information for the novice Internet user about using the File Transfer Protocol (FTP). It explains what FTP is, what anonymous FTP is, and what an anonymous FTP archive site is. It shows a sample anonymous FTP session. It also discusses common ways files are packaged for efficient storage and transmission.
This document is the result of work done in the Internet Anonymous FTP Archives (IAFA) working group of the IETF. Special thanks are due to Mark Baushke (Cisco), John Curran (BBN), Aydin Edguer (CWRU), Rafal Maszkowski (Onsala Space Observatory), Marsha Perrott (PREPnet), Bob Peterson (Texas Instruments), Nathan Torkington (Victoria University of Wellington), and Stephen Tihor (NYU) for excellent comments and contributions.
What is FTP?
FTP refers to the File Transfer Protocol , one of the protocols within the TCP/IP protocol suite used on the Internet. The File Transfer Protocol makes it possible to transfer files from one computer (or host) on the Internet to another. There are many FTP implementations built on the specification of the FTP protocol. A user of an FTP program must log in to both hosts in order to transfer a file from one to the other.
It is common for a user with files on more than one host to use the FTP program to transfer files from one host to another. In this case, the user has an account on both hosts involved, so he has passwords for both hosts.
IAFA Working Group [Page 1]
RFC 1635 How To FTP May 1994
However, Internet users may also take advantage of a wealth of information available from archive sites by using a general purpose account called "anonymous FTP".
What is an Archive Site?
An archive site is a host that acts as a repository of information, much like a conventional library. Information stored on these Internet hosts is made available for users to transfer to their local sites. Users run software to identify this information and transfer it to their own hosts. Such a transfer is done with a program that implements the File Transfer Protocol (FTP).
What is Anonymous FTP?
Anonymous FTP is a means by which archive sites allow general access to their archives of information. These sites create a special account called "anonymous". User "anonymous" has limited access rights to the archive host, as well as some operating restrictions. In fact, the only operations allowed are logging in using FTP, listing the contents of a limited set of directories, and retrieving files. Some sites limit the contents of a directory listing an anonymous user can see as well. Note that "anonymous" users are not usually allowed to transfer file...