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How to get read/write when accessing anonymous FTP with OS X?
July 3, 2008 11:28 AM   Subscribe

Trying to access a read/write anonymous FTP on OS X but it only gives me read access...

I've set up an Ubuntu machine with an anonymous FTP (vsftpd). Other Ubuntu and Windows machines can log into it fine, and both up/download files. OS X only lets me access as read only. I click Go -> Connect to server, and then type ftp://192.168.1.13 (the local address). Am I doing something wrong? Is there a specific way of telling OS X to log in anonymously (I suspect it's logging in with my username).
posted by humblepigeon to Computers & Internet (17 answers total)
 
That'll be the crap ftp support built into the finder. It only allows read only access. You will need to download a client - Transmit. There's a good free one also... cuteftp I think
posted by twistedonion at 11:32 AM on July 3, 2008


Seconded.

Finder-based FTP access has been *broken* since OS X first rolled out.

Transmit is awesome. Fugu is free.

Make your choice!
posted by kbanas at 11:38 AM on July 3, 2008


Sorry, cuteftp is not free (not even sure if it's for the mac) Fugu was what I was thinking of.
posted by twistedonion at 11:40 AM on July 3, 2008


Also, there's Cyberduck.

Apple's continued failure to add write support to the Finder's FTP capabilities amazes me very time there's a new release. It's like buying the tenth edition of a dictionary and finding out it's still missing the Ks.
posted by Tomorrowful at 11:45 AM on July 3, 2008


If you don't want to download anything, you can set up NFS on the Ubuntu machine. You can even have Leopard auto-mount the share.
posted by low affect at 11:58 AM on July 3, 2008


That'll be the crap ftp support built into the finder. It only allows read only access.

That's really, genuinely astonishing. A real Achilles' heel in OS X. Anyway, thanks for the answers.

FWIW it was about creating a fuss-free file-sharing solution for all platforms that I can recommend to other non-tech friends. SMB is flaky on Ubuntu 8.04, NFS isn't supported on Windows out-of-the-box... I thought FTP was the solution. Oh well, Back to the drawing board.
posted by humblepigeon at 12:07 PM on July 3, 2008


MacFusion
posted by mkultra at 12:23 PM on July 3, 2008


I should note that it requires MacFUSE, and also supports SSH.
posted by mkultra at 12:24 PM on July 3, 2008


FWIW it was about creating a fuss-free file-sharing solution for all platforms that I can recommend to other non-tech friends. SMB is flaky on Ubuntu 8.04

Then SMB it should be, since your non-tech friends are extremely unlikely to be running Ubuntu.
posted by kindall at 12:50 PM on July 3, 2008


for what it's worth, you can always use the standard unix ftp client from the terminal's command line, which is what i usually do.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 2:18 PM on July 3, 2008


Finder-based FTP access has been *broken* since OS X first rolled out.

I think it's more a matter of "we didn't add write support into Finder" than "our implementation of write support is not working correctly". (Not an excuse, just a clarification.) Sorta like the NTFS file system support across Mac OS X as a whole.

Man, I'd love to see that in Snow Leopard, finally. Holy shit.

FILE THOSE BUGS people!
posted by Mikey-San at 2:47 PM on July 3, 2008


Oh also:

Transmit is the awesomest FTP client ever.
posted by Mikey-San at 2:48 PM on July 3, 2008


MacFUSE has a (experimental, ymmv) read/write driver for NTFS.

Seriously, check out MacFusion. It'll do exactly what you want. Free.
posted by mkultra at 5:01 PM on July 3, 2008


One problem I've had with FTP - and occasionally NTFS - mounts through MacFusion is that sometimes the mount will become extremely slow. I know FUSE is slow anyway, but I'm talking about ~350Mb files that would normally take a few minutes suddenly deciding to take 6+ hours.

I still haven't nailed down why - at first I thought it was tied up with the Finder preview pane, but it seems not. Somehow it seems to be related to the machine uptime, not the time the mount has been connected or the length of time MacFusion has been running. The only real cure I've found is to reboot OS X.

The real answer is to fix the SMB support on Ubuntu, which you admit is flaky. Having suffered through a similar problem with one of the Debian releases a year or two ago (an odd version incompatibility between the Samba server on Debian and the Samba client in OS X), I'd suggest looking on one of the alternative repositories of Debian/Ubuntu packages for the latest Samba version.

FWIW, the only other problem I've had with NTFS support in MacFUSE is one instance of disk corruption that lost the contents of the target directory when it was running slow - I started moving (not copying) one file into a mounted NTFS directory containing about 8, it told me 6 hours, so I said "that's odd!" but left it overnight. In the morning the original file was gone (remember, I was moving not copying) and I had a disk mount error on the USB-connected NTFS volume. Mounting it on a XP machine forced a chkdsk/scandisk & fixed the filesystem errors, but lost the contents of the target directory.
posted by Pinback at 11:38 PM on July 3, 2008


Man, I'd love to see that in Snow Leopard, finally. Holy shit.

The life of an OS X user, in a nutshell.

Ubuntu users don't have this worry, because everything ends-up in the next release. The new features just doesn't work properly because it's buggy, or unfinished (Firefox 3 anybody?). Nobody wants to fix it either, because they're too busy with importing the cool new stuff.

Windows users just don't care. They take what they're given. It works. That's enough.

Then SMB it should be, since your non-tech friends are extremely unlikely to be running Ubuntu.

That would be the case if they didn't have me as a friend :) Seriously, Ubuntu 8.04 really is ready for "ordinary people" roll-out. It's just that SMB is still broken (well, actually, broken again, after working relatively OK in previous releases; if you want a some fun, type smbpasswd at the prompt to change your SMB password and marvel as, without warning, it changes your FREAKING LOGIN PASSWORD!).
posted by humblepigeon at 2:10 AM on July 4, 2008


MacFusion works a treat, thanks for pointing that out. Typically for Mac apps it isn't hard to install or configure either.

Apple should be looking to make Fuse a key component of future OS X releases. It's extremely useful.
posted by humblepigeon at 3:11 AM on July 4, 2008


The life of an OS X user, in a nutshell.

*rolls eyes*

It's one thing on a pretty short list of "hey, this is kinda overdue" items. Don't inflate your head too much.
posted by Mikey-San at 6:37 AM on July 7, 2008


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