FTP (File Transfer Protocol) is a protocol for data transmission that, using a TCP / IP (that is, an internet connection), enables the remote transfer of files: for example, from your personal computer to an Internet server, or vice versa.
It is used, for example, to transfer web pages from a development computer, on which the pages are written, to the final Internet server. Or to transfer files from Internet servers to your computer, even if the features of current Internet browsers (Firefox, Opera, Netscape, Sea Monkey, and others, including the unfortunately still widespread dangerpus Microsoft Internet Explorer) make such use obsolete.
There are around excellent tools for handling FTP, the best of which, Filezilla, is also free.
If a professional tool like Filezilla FTP is available, why should you use ViewFTP? Well, Filezilla is precisely a professional tool: as such, although it is not really difficult to use by a user who knows all about FTP, and even by those who only know something, could be on occasion problematic for the less experienced user.
ViewFTP allows the FTP access through a Microsof Windows window. A window just like all the others: in the picture on the right you can see this site main directory in such a window. File transfer, or cancellation, or renaming, are done exactly as in a normal Windows Explorer window. Obviously, things will be a bit slower, but it is incredibly easy to understand, and convenient to use.
Actually, the functionality is already present in Windows. To open such a window, you need to open Microsoft Internet Explorer, which is definitely the worst internet browser around (being a Microsoft thing, how could it be otherwise?) It misunderstands the CSS style sheets, that is, it messes up format and appearance of documents; it is very slow; Internet Explorer is also dangerous to use: the less you use it, the better. Well, after having opened that thing, you have to look in some tools menu that Microsoft nicely keeps moving continuously, making it difficult if not impossible to localise it in different Explorer versions; then start a certain function, if you can find it, and type an address, a user name and a password when prompted, each time.
Or you could open a window in Windows Explorer, and type in the path name of the FTP address, username and password when asked, each time.
Or you can ask ViewFTP to do all of this for you, once and for all.
Simply said, ViewFTP opens a window, quite similar to Windows Explorer window to allow FTP access to a remote server through that window.
ViewFTP is defintely easy to use: you choose a name for a connection (you can have as many connections to many different servers as you need, and you can also connect the same site with different user names), input the site address, the user name and a password, as required, and click to open the window. That's all. The next time ViewFTP will remember everything (except the password, if you chose not to store it).
ViewFTP is not Filezilla, and definitely it is not a professional tool. It simply activates a Windows native function that is little known and even less accessible.
Using ViewFTP it is possible that not all of the directories of the target server are accessible, eg in the above example figure, you can see the contents of the htdocs directory of this site, the one where you are reading this page from. It is not visible, and there is no way to access, for example, the cgi-bin, which also exists: for certain pourposes, this can be a good thing.
You can ask the less-qualified staff to upload the content of some selected folders, protected by a password, by means of the VieFTW open window. The use of a simple and plain window allows even less qualified staff ro manage this operation .