The Most Common FTP Commands List

The Most Common FTP Commands List
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To get to know what the common FTP commands list contains, it is best to know what FTP is. FTP, known as File Transfer Protocol in full is a standard service that is used to copy files from one computer to another over a network in either the Internet or an Intranet. The FTP service is facilitated by the use of client and server applications to handle the requests. Some of these applications have calls to the FTP commands built-in while others like the command line tools require you to type them in manually. Here is an article on the some of the workings in FTP and a comparison of FTP programs.

FTP Syntax

You can use FTP from the command line using the following command:


The usage is as follows:

FTP [options] [-s:filename] [-w:windowsize] [host]


-s:filename Specifies a text file containing FTP commands; the commands will automatically run after FTP starts.

-w:buffersize Overrides the default transfer buffer size of 4096.

host Specifies the host name or IP address of the remote host to connect to.

The options above are all optional.

Other Common FTP Commands

append - This tells the server that If the file specified in the pathname exists at the server site, then the data shall be appended to that file;

ascii - Default transfer data type intended primarily for the transfer of text files

bell - Cause a bell to ring after each command.

binary - Transfer data type best for the transfer of files other than text files

bye - End the FTP client session and quite the program

cd - Used to browse remote directories

close - Close the active connection

delete - delete the specified file on the remote host

debug - Toggle debug mode on and off

dir - List a remote directory’s files and subdirectories.

disconnect - Disconnect from the remote host, but not the FTP program.

get - Cop a file from the server to your local computer

glob - Toggle the use of wildcard characters in local path-names.

hash - Toggle printing a hash (#) for each 2K data block transferred.

help - Used to print a list of available commands

lcd - Used to browse local directories

literal - Send arguments, as-is, to the remote FTP host.

ls - List items in the directory

mdelete - Delete files on remote host.

mdir - Display a list of a remote directory’s files and sub-directories.

mget - Copy multiple remote files to the local computer.

mkdir - Used to create a directory on the server

mls - List a remote directory’s files and folders.

mput - Copy multiple local files to the remote host.

open - Open a connection to the server

prompt – During copying of multiple files, this allows the FTP client to prompt for action after each file has been copied

put - Send a file from the local computer to the remote server

pwd - Returns the name of the current directory on the remote host

quit - End the FTP client session and quite the program

quote - Send arguments, as-is, to the remote FTP host

recv - Copy a remote file to the local PC

remotehelp - Display help for remote commands

rename - Used to rename a specified file to the new name given

rmdir - This is used to remove a directory from the drectory tree

send - Copy a local file to the remote host.

status - Used to check whether you are connected to the server, what other features are turned on and off

trace - Toggle data packet tracing on and off

type - The data representation type used for data transfer and storage.

user - The person or process wishing to access the file transfer service

verbose - Turn on and off echoing activity on screen

This sums up the common FTP commands list


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