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What is sftp
Secure file transfer protocol(sftp) is a terminal program that encrypts the files that you send and recievei to a remote system. The Open-ssh package comes with three client programs. One of which is sftp. sftp is presently not implemented on the server.
Why use sftp instead of ftp?
sftp is a secure form of the ftp command.Whenever a user opens up a regular ftp session or most other TCP/IP connections, the entire transmission made between the host and the user is sent in plain text.Anyone who has the ability to snoop on the network packets can read the data, including the password information.If an unauthorized user can login, they have the oppurtunity to compromise the system.
When using ssh's sftp instead of the ftp, the entire login sesion, including transmission of password, is encrypted.It is therefore much more difficult for an outsider to observe and collect passwords from a system using ssh/sftp sessions.
How to use sftp?
sftp is similar to ftp: sftp username@ip_address at which point it will prompt you for your password. Then you receive an sftp prompt.For then on you use the same commands as in an ftp session, i.e. dir,get,put, etc.Note that the commands bin, ascii, prompt are not used in sftp.Also, the transfer of multiple files with "mget" and "mput" is not supported. If you want to transfer many files,use the "tar" command to produce a single archive for sftp.If you need a reminder which commands are available type "help" at the sftp> prompt.
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