Basic Use

Download SFTP Client

filezilla logoThe first step will be to download and install a client for pushing files to the Web Hosting servers.  We recommend Filezilla – it is 100% free, available on all 3 major platforms, and fully supports SFTP sessions.

Log In

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Configure the login session as follows:

  • Host is 'web.osu.edu'
  • Protocol is 'SFTP – …'
  • Login Type is your choice between 'Normal' and 'Ask for password' – it's generally safer to choose the latter so your password isn't stored anywhere permanently.
  • User is a string built from your name.#, an `@`, and then the site's account ID (see example images)

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The defaults for everything else work properly so that's all you need.  It is safe to add some notes to the comments or name the session something appropriate; however, you will probably want to stay out of the other 3 tabs or you risk changing something that breaks the session settings.

If you chose the 'Ask for password' option then you will be presented with a window for entering your password.  It is safe to keep the box at the bottom checked – it won't store your password anywhere permanent and only retains it in memory until you close Filezilla.

Upload Content

filezilla directory list
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Next step is to upload your website content.

Standard website files go under htdocs/.  By default htsdocs/ is just a symlink to htdocs/ so that unencrypted (http://) and encrypted (https://) requests to your website are pulled from the same directory.  If this does not suit your needs then you can remove "htsdocs" and create a new directory named the same for the encrypted side of your website.

The php-bin/ and php-data/ directories contain the files required for PHP scripting support.  The latter is also meant to hold files that should be accessible only to PHP scripts and not downloadable via a web browser.  While you can accomplish this with htaccess files as well, this is meant to be even more secure.  Please note that any changes made to php-bin/php-cgi and php-data/php.ini are overwritten each build run.  We provide access to them for reference purposes only.  If you need to make changes to PHP's behavior then you'll need to use .user.ini files instead.

The raw access and error logs are accessible via the logs directory.  Content is only retained for a couple of days, though, so it's more for troubleshooting and debugging than retaining historical data.

The tmp/ directory should be used for all temporary file needs – nothing should ever use the server's /tmp.  There are numerous servers in the cluster and no guarantees that a user will hit the same one each time.  The individual temp directories are synchronized across the entire cluster and provide better seperation protection between individual Web Hosting accounts.

View Content

Check your web browser to see if content you've uploaded is present and working.  htdocs/ is the top-level for http:// and htsdocs/ is top-level for https:// – this means that if you put an data.html file into htdocs/, you should be able to access it via something like http://mysite.osu.edu/data.html.  If your site does not have HTTPS enabled then this directory probably won't exist.

Anything ending in .php will be executed as PHP script rather than displayed.  If you give a non-PHP file a .php extention, it will probably go through unaffected; however, if you name a PHP script something other than with a .php extension then the script won't run and may even display sensitive data to the browser such as database login / password.  If your PHP script is named properly and is still displaying the code instead of executing it, contact us as your account may not have PHP enabled at all. (This was common for older accounts but it is enabled by default for anything recent)


Need More Information?

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More questions? Check the support section or email 8help@osu.edu.

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