FTP/FTPS and File Management in Java and PHP Cloud Hosting

| March 25, 2013

You've been waiting for it... And here it is! Jelastic now supports FTP! Thanks to all of our active users, this feature got 2017 votes and it is now available in Jelastic PaaS.

So now you get easier access to your application files and a fast, easy, and reliable way of file sharing and data transfer to and from your servers in Jelastic environments.

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used to transfer files from one host to another over a TCP-based network. It is built on a client-server architecture and uses separate control and data connections between the client and the server. For secure transmission that hides (encrypts) the username and password, and encrypts the content, it is used FTP secured with SSL (FTPS). BTW Jelastic supports both FTP and FTPS. Unlike HTTP, the FTP protocol is stateful: you establish a control connection for the duration of an FTP session that typically spans multiple data transfers.

FTP usage in Jelastic allows you easily to upload/download necessary resources to corresponding folders. You can work with a group of files instead of uploading/downloading each file separately through dashboard. Also there is no necessity to redeploy your application after applying your edits.

As you know Jelastic supports log rotate which is designed for easy administration of systems that generate large numbers of log files. It allows automatic rotation, compression, and removal of log files. Through Jelastic dashboard you can read only new logs, but not already compressed ones (in .gz format). Now to look through your old logs you can use any FTP-client.

It is very easy to enable synchronization between your local machine and your server in Jelastic through FTP. You can access and edit most of config files, even those you can’t through dashboard, using FTP-client. Moreover you can use config editor you used to work with, not the inbuilt one. And finally you can easy deploy your applications to Jelastic via FTP.

Let's examine how you can get all these benefits using the instructions below:

1. Create an environment

2. Install FTP

3. Transfer files

4. Download log files

5. Sync files

6. Edit configuration files

7. Deploy application via FTP

Create an environment

1. Go to Jelastic.com and sign up if you haven't done it yet or log in with your Jelastic credentials by clicking the Sign In link on the page.

2. While in Jelastic dashboard, click the Create environment button.


3. In the Environment Topology dialog, pick your application server (for example, Tomcat 7 or 6) and switch on PublicIP. Then type your environment name, for example, ftptest.


It will take just a minute for your environment to be created.


Install FTP

1. Click Add-ons button for your application server.


2. In the opened tab you'll see the list of all applications available for adding to your environment. Find FTP and click Install.


3. Сonfirm the installation by clicking Install button in the opened window.


After adding FTP to the Jelastic environment you'll get the email with credentials for accessing (FTP links, Login, Password, IPs etc.).

Transfer files

1. Install and open any FTP client (we use FileZilla as an example).

2. Enter your Host, Username and Password using the FTP credentials you've got via email after FTP installation. Perform the connection by clicking Quickconnect.


3. You can upload or download files simply by double-clicking on them. To transfer directories and/or multiple files select them, right-click the selection and then click on Upload/Download in the popup menu.


4. You can simply drag the files from one directory and drop them on the other one for transferring.

5. Add your files to the queue if you want to transfer them later.


6. One more useful feature is directory comparison. To quickly see differences between files on the local machine and the server, choose View > Directory Comparison, select either compare file size or compare modification time and click Enable.


Download log files

1. Install and open any FTP client (we use FileZilla as an example).
2. Enter your Host, Username and Password using the FTP credentials you've got via email after FTP installation. Perform the connection by clicking Quickconnect.

3. Now you can simply download your logs: navigate to the logs folder, select the log file you need, download it as it's shown in the screenshot below and open in any convenient editor to review.


Sync files

1. Start GoodSync and click the Browse button on the left side.

2. In the opened window choose the FTP tab, fill in the required fields (Host, Username, Password) and click Go button.


3. Then choose the necessary folder on your server and click OK.

4. After that click the Browse button on the right side and choose the local folder you would like to back up or sync your data to.


5. Then in the main window click the Analyze button. You will be shown all the differences in the chosen folders.


6. Click the Sync button to perform the synchronization.


Edit configuration files

1. Open your config editor (we use Sublime Text 2 as an example).

2. Connect to your server via FTP (if you use Sublime click File->FTP/SFTP->Browse server) and you can start edit your files.


Deploy application via FTP

Note: We don't recommend to deploy your apps in such a way because application you've deployed won’t be shown in Jelastic dashboard, so if you want to redeploy or delete your application you have to do this manually. Also such a deployment procedure is not suitable for GlassFish application server.

Let's consider a short example on how to deploy Railo to your Jelastic Environment through FileZilla.

1. Install and open any FTP client (we use FileZilla as an example).

2. Connect to your environment via FTP: Enter your Host, Username and Password and click on Quickconnect button.

3. Copy your application files into the ROOT folder (or create another context for your app and copy your files in it).


4. Now you can return to Jelastic dashboard and make sure that everything is ok. For that click Open in browser button for your environment.


Here is a video version of the same procedures:


That's all for today! As you can see thanks to you our platform is getting better!

Don't hesitate to tell us what you need from Jelastic and vote for other's ideas here. The more votes a feature gets - the higher priority it gains in the roadmap.

Thanks again for being a part of Jelastic community and keep your suggestions coming!