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FTP / Fetch - File Transfer Protocol
FTP - Windows Fetch - Mac

Using Fetch for Macintosh


Fetch is a Macintosh program used for transferring files. These files can be text, music, photographs, lines of code, etc. Files can be sent from your computer as well as received from any computer that supports File Transfer Protocol (FTP), or, in the case of all ACCC machines, SFTP, the protocols that Fetch uses.

For extensive information on FTP, please see File Transfer and FTP. SFTP is a secure version of FTP that protects both your netid and password, and the file transfer itself. You will need to use SFTP for all file transfers to ACCC machines, except for anonymous FTP, shortly, because we are turning off all unsecured access to ACCC accounts.

Installing and Using Fetch

Instructions on installing and using Fetch for SFTP are in SSH and sFTP for Macs -- A Secure Replacement for Telnet and FTP.

Downloading and Uploading Files Using Your UIC Account

Downloading files and non-anonymous FTP:

The primary use of FTP is to download and upload files between a PC or Macintosh and an account on a remote computer.

Perhaps you want to download your WWW home page so that you can edit it in a web editor and WordPerfect 3.5; your home page would be located in the public_html directory in your unix account.

The Host field should contain a machine name; in this example, it will be The User ID field should contain your login name, and the password field should contain the password for that login. You may also enter a specific directory name in the Directory field.

If you enter a non-existent directory name in the Directory Field you will get an error message that says "no such directory." This is a non-fatal error; you should click on OK to continue.

You would then see a list of the directories that exist in your icarus account. You can open these directories and see more directories or files. For example, if you open public_html, you will get a list of the files that constitute your web pages.

Once you are in the right directory, scroll until you see the file you wish to download. Double-click on it, and you will begin downloading it.

Uploading Files:

Fetch can also be used to upload a document onto an icarus or tigger account. This is useful if you have a digital photograph (jpeg, gif, etc.) you wish to put on your account, perhaps to add to your W eb page. This is also good for sending an HTML document to a UNIX account.

To begin, open Fetch. For Hostname: put in the machine alias such as or Enter your tigger or icarus login (jdoe1) for the Username: field, and use that account's password for the Password: field. Select Connect using: SFTP. Click Connect.

Once the connection is established, choose Put. When you are given the familiar Mac File Selection pop-up window, you can choose the documents to be uploaded.

There are also options on how to put your data. Automatic is usually safe. But if you insist on selecting for yourself, Raw Data is the safest bet and absolutely essential if you are sending graphics, while Mac Binary II is good for sending Macintosh created documents to other Macintosh users.

Getting to

Many users download files from anonymous FTP sites, such as or To connect to UIC's public FTP site, type in the Host field.

For some sites like Dartmouth's, you can leave the User ID field blank. However, for UIC anonymous FTP you must type the word "anonymous" for the User ID field.

For the password the convention for anonymous FTP is to use your full e-mail address. Enter your, or an actual account@machine-type address, e.g., Some anonymous FTP sites don't require that a password be entered.

An Example

Let's pretend you want to download the ph program for Macintosh from the UIC public FTP site. The ph application allows you to search for e-mail addresses, phone numbers, and other information about users here at UIC and elsewhere on the Internet (and is included in this kit). Ph uses a standard protocol and ph clients are also available at UIC on UNIX (tigger and icarus).

The first step would be to log into UIC's FTP site as described in the Getting to section. Once you are logged in, you will automatically be placed in the pub (public) directory; a directory available to anonymous users. You will know that you're in the pub directory when pub appears in the box above the folder list. The pub directory is a list of files available for download at the UIC FTP site.

For this example, find and double-click on the ph folder. The programs in this file are all ph programs for different operating systems. Open the Mac folder and you will get a list of documents and programs contained within it.

Start with the README document. Open this document and a Macintosh dialog box will appear asking you where you want your document placed. Choose the desktop, and your document will appear on the desktop as an icon.

The amount of time it takes to complete downloading text or an application is dependent on file size and modem speed.

Note: To download the entire Macintosh ph program, six separate items, either go back a directory into the ph directory, select the mac folder by clicking on it and select Get File or go to Get Directories and Files.... under Remote in the menu bar.

Cross-Platform File Transfer

A useful, albeit more complex, example for a Macintosh user is sending an attachment written with a Macintosh program to a PC user. Your first step is to save your document as a PC compatible file. This involves both the file type and the file name. Choose the Save As option from the file menu of your document's application. Choose to save this file as a PC file in the same application the PC user is going to use to read your attachment. This may not always be available so you must choose the closest option.

For example, if you wanted to send a WordPerfect 6.1 for Macintosh document to a Microsoft Word Windows user, you would probably retain most of your formats saving your document as a WordPerfect 5.1/5.2 Export.

If the Windows/DOS user is using a more obscure word processor, save your document as an RTF file.

Next, you must rename your document according to Windows conventions and specifications. This means a simple name followed by a three letter extension, separated by a period. For example, a Mac WordPerfect user would rename their document from "my great document" to mygrtdoc.wpd

.wpd is the DOS extension for WordPerfect files, .doc is the extension for MSWord, .txt for a text document, etc.

At this point your document is ready to be sent to your account. The important step now is sending your document as Raw Data. Open a Fetch session to your icarus or tigger account.

Choose the directory in which you want to place your document by clicking its name with your mouse; choose the document you want placed there by selecting Put and selecting your document. At this point you will get put file dialog box. Underneath the name of your file is a pull-down menu that says Format. You are safe to keep Automatic. Then Press Put.

After you have closed your Fetch session, login to the account you transferred the file to and use PINE (the email/message system supported by UNIX) to attach the uploaded file and send it.

Extra Notes

Be sure to look at your preference settings located in the customized menu bar. When downloading a text file, be sure to set the default editor (found in Preferences) to a program in your Macintosh such as MS Word or WordPerfect. Please take a look at the comprehensive Fetch documentation included with the Fetch Program.

FTP Previous:  FTP - Windows

2006-12-13  CSO
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