WS_FTPLE Help Manual

Table of Contents
What is an FTP Client? Transfer Mode
The Basic WS_FTPLE Interface          ASCII
Basic WS_FTPLE Commands          Binary
         Delete          Auto
         Rename Ipswitch's New User Guide
         Refresh Installation Instructions
         View          Where To Get It
         Exec          Creating Profiles

What is an FTP Client?

An FTP client (file transfer protocol) is a program that is used to establish an FTP connection between two computers, a local system and a remote system.  Why establish an FTP connection?  To transfer files from one computer to another.  For purposes of this class, the local system is whatever computer you are working on and sitting in front of (i.e. your home micro, or in a computer lab).  The remote system that is of primary relevance towards completing the ISM 4220 Final Project is NERSP.  The NERSP system is part of NERDC which is located in the Bryant Space Sciences Center across the street from the Hub.  This is the physical location of the computer you are establishing a connection to from your microcomputer.

The Basic WS_FTPLE Interface

Now the easy part.  Once you have your FTP client installed, configured, and are connected (instructions to follow), you will be presented with the above image.

This is really all there is to an FTP client.  The window on the left displays what is on your micro, and the window on the right displays what is on the remote system (in this case, what's in the root directory of your NERSP class account).  As with any Windows application, if you click on the box button (left of the X = close button) at the upper right corner, the image will cover your entire screen.

In order to transfer (copy) a file from your micro (local system) to your disk space on NERSP (remote system), or vice versa (from remote system to local system), all you need to do is follow these simple steps: When highlighting files for transfer, WS_FTP allows for multiple file selection and transfer, simultaneously, by using the CTRL and SHIFT keys.  While holding down the CTRL key, you can click on all files that are intended to be transferred, and then press the arrow-button to transfer all the files at once.  This opposed to clicking on each file individually, and pressing the arrow-button each and every time for each file transferred.  The SHIFT key can be used for a similar purpose.  For example (on the local system), while pressing the SHIFT key, clicking the left mouse button on "davecase.rtf" and then clicking on "minicase1.doc" would highlight those two files and all files in between them.  You could then press the arrow-button pointing to the right to send all these files to the remote system.

Basic WS_FTPLE Commands

The WS_FTP software is intelligent enough to carry out many rudimentary commands on both the local and remote systems.  Some of the more commonly used commands are illustrated below:


On both the local and remote systems, pressing the DELETE button after highlighting either a single or multiple files will remove them from whichever system the command is executed on.  For example, from the image above, if I were to highlight "Case2.xls" on the remote system and press the DELETE button, this file would be removed from the remote system.  The equivalent command that you would use if you were in a NERSP telnet session to remove this file would be:  rm Case2.xls. This is the same command that WS_FTP automatically executes for you on the remote system when you press the DELETE button.  Similarly, if you were trying to remove a file on the local system, WS_FTP would generate the necessary command which on a Win95 machine would be:  delete filename.


Just as with the delete function, highlighting a single file and pressing the RENAME button will allow you to rename a file on both the local and remote system.  A window will pop up which will prompt you to enter the new filename.


Each time you transfer a file, it's often a good idea to refresh the view of the directory where the file was transferred (the destination directory).  This is done by pressing the REFRESH button.  However, usually the refresh feature executes automatically when a file is transferred.  If you create and save a new file to a subdirectory on your micro that is open in WS_FTP, you must press REFRESH to have WS_FTP display that file. If you edit and save an existing file, the REFRESH will show the time and size of the just edited copy you saved.  You can also use the Refresh button to de-select any selected directories or files.


Highlighting a file one either the local or remote system and clicking the VIEW button will view the selected file with whichever text editor is specified in the user preferences.  The default text viewer is notepad.  When viewing files on the remote system, the file is downloaded in the local Windows temporary directory, and depending on the file size, can take some time to load.  This feature is for ASCII files only.  Do NOT use this feature with binary files.


You can associate any file extensions with an application (executable program) in the Associations properties.  Select the file and then click the EXEC button.  WS_FTPLE executes the file according to its file extension.  A common example of this feature's use is with Word (.doc), Excel (.xls), Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) files.  Highlighting a file with one of these extensions, and pressing the EXEC button (provided the file association is in the Associations properties), the appropriate application would automatically launch and display the selected file.

Transfer Type

In order for proper conversion among varying platforms to be seamless, it's necessary to select the proper transfer mode.  In WS_FTPLE, there are three options: ASCII, Binary, and Auto.


A rule of thumb is to select ASCII transfer mode if the file being transferred is either a text (.txt) or HTML (.htm or .html) file.  the end-of-line character varies among different computers.  Sending text files in ASCII mode ensures that the EOL character is translated properly.  Sending a binary file in ASCII transfer mode will provide an unusable file.  Be careful to avoid this.


Binary mode is used for transferring files that are not text (ASCII files). Executable programs, word processing documents, spreadsheets, databases, graphics files, and sound files are some examples of files that must be transferred in binary mode.

Any procedure on your micro that saves a file in a format that you cannot easily read when you enter "type filename.ext" from the DOS prompt must be transferred in binary mode.


When checked, all files are transferred in binary mode unless the extension is listed on the Extensions tab. (WS_FTPLE stores the ASCII extensions in the ws_ftp.txt file).  Extensions can be up to ten characters long and can contain periods.  Note: These are not DOS extensions! Rather they are the ending characters of a filename. If you expect it to match on a period, you must put the period in the full name specification.


Where To Get It

Ipswitch Inc.'s offering of the latest versions of Jon Junod's WS_FTPLE (the LE stands for Limited Edition) can be downloaded here from the ISM 4220 Class Software site, or directly from Ipswitch, Inc.  WS_FTPLE is an excellent FTP client offered free of charge for academic use.

If you've already installed the software and only need help configuring a profile for your NERSP account, click here.  Otherwise, continue reading for help installing the software package, WS_FTPLE.
  1. In the following it is assumed your major working hard disk is named C: (or c:).  If you have multiple physical hard disks or are a more advanced user with multiple partitions on your hard drive, use the designation you prefer.  If the prior two sentences make little or no sense to you, it is almost certain your major working hard disk is C: (or c:).

  2. To begin downloading, click here or click on the filename 'ws_ftple.exe' on the Class Software site.

  3. You will be prompted about what you would like to do with the file.  Click on 'Save file'.

  4. It is recommended that you create a subdirectory directly under your primary work directory (likely C:\) in which to save this file.

    Follow these instructions to do this:
  5. The file is 646K which will take approximately 3 minutes to download at 56kbps, and 6 minutes to download at 28.8kbps.

  6. After downloading the file, open C:\ftp\source and double click on the filename, "ws_ftple.exe".

  7. Click "Install WS_FTP LE" and then click "Continue".

  8. Select the appropriate settings to see if you qualify for free access to this software package.  For purposes of the final project, you do in fact qualify and should enter the following information. (student --> at home --> for academic work).

  9. Read the user agreement and respond appropriately.

  10. You must now select a directory in which to install the program.  It is recommended that you install the program in the following directory:


    Click OK.

  11. You must now select a default directory on the local system.  This is the directory that will appear in the "local system" window when the program runs for the first time.  This setting can be easily changed later, although it's recommended that you choose whatever directory contains your working files for the final project.  You can directly type in the path of the directory, or you can press BROWSE to locate the directory.  When finished, click "OK" to continue the installation.

  12. You will then be prompted to enter your e-mail address which is used for anonymous logins.  Good netiquette dictates that you state your real e-mail address, although you can just press enter and use the default which is guest@unknown.

  13. Next, you'll be prompted to enter the name of the Program Manager Group for this software.  This is simply the sub-folder that will have the shortcuts to WS_FTPLE.  It's recommended that you just press enter which will select the default (Start Menu --> Programs --> WS_FTP).

  14. Setup should have been completed successfully.

Creating Profiles

  1. Open up WS_FTPLE by the following sequence:  Start Menu --> Programs --> WS_FTP --> WS_FTP95 LE

  2. A window like the one at the top of this document will appear with a smaller window inside of it titled "Session Properties". This window is shown below.

  3. WS_FTPLE is installed with a number of Profile Names already set by the manufacturer.  These can be viewed by pulling down the drop-box menu beside "Profile Name".  To create a new Profile Name for use with your NERSP account, begin by pressing the "New" button.

  4. In this "Session Properties" window, fill it out in the following way:

    Profile name:  NERSP -- S4220?? (the last two digits corresponding to your username)
    Host Name/Address:
    Host Type:  Automatic Detect
    User ID:  s4220?? (the last two digits corresponding to your username)
    Password:  (Enter your NERSP Password here)
    Account:  Leave this field empty.
    Comment:  Leave this field empty.
    Anonymous:  Uncheck this box.
    Save Pwd:  Check ONLY if on a secure computer that others are not likely to use.

    Click on the "Advanced" tab and ensure that the "Remote Port" is set to 21.

  5. At this point, all necessary information has been entered that is needed to establish an FTP connection to your NERSP account.  However, you can modify additional settings to make file transfer even more convenient.  In the "Session Properties" window, you can click on the "Startup" tab to change which directory the local and remote systems will begin in upon establishing a connection.  Furthermore, on the "Advanced" tab, you can specify what to do in the even that the FTP destination is busy or full.  This isn't an issue for your NERSP account since you and you alone have access to it.  This becomes an issue when dealing with publicly accessible FTP sites.  If you are behind a firewall, consult the help files included with WS_FTPLE for assistance on this topic.

  6. It would be a very good idea to change the default text viewer/editor from the default (which is Notepad) to another more powerful text editor such as the MultiSess editor which can be downloaded from the ISM 4220 Class Software site (the filename is ""). The MultiSess editor can also be downloaded directly by clicking here.

    Use the following instructions to change your default text viewer/editor:

  7. As mentioned previously, it is considered good netiquette to use your real e-mail address when accessing anonymous FTP sites.  If you didn't do this during installation and want to do it now, you can click on the "Options" button at the bottom of the main WS_FTPLE window.  Press the "General" tab and enter your e-mail address in the corresponding text area.  Furthermore, this "Options" section is where you specify all your preferences for using WS_FTPLE (i.e. file associations, specifying your preferred text editor/viewer, etc).  Simply click on the appropriate tab and enter the relevant information and paths.  Reference the WS_FTPLE help files for further assistance.

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