An FTP gotcha on Windows versus Unix


For those of you like me who use a flavour of UNIX (Mac OS X, FreeBSD, Linux…) but at some point are stuck using a Windows computer, the built in Command Prompt FTP client can throw you off for one simple reason: Windows goes against what everyone else does (yet again!) and defaults to ASCII for file transfers instead of binary. This means any non-plain text files you upload via FTP will become corrupted and unusable.

Little tip for those doing this, make sure once you've logged onto an FTP server to type the "binary" command first before you do anything else. Windows will confirm the change by printing "200 Type set to I".

Another small Windows platform difference along the lines of my ifconfig versus ipconfig post I also wrote this month that regular Windows users probably already know, but passing it on for what it may be worth. I'm not Bill Kurtis.

Microsoft's TechNet has more details.

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Ruben Schade is a technical writer and infrastructure architect in Sydney, Australia who refers to himself in the third person. Hi!

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