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Anonymously Sharing Files and Folders

Hosted~FTP~ allows anonymous 3rd parties (not a contact or user of your account) to access your files and folders when you enable anonymous access to a shared folder you own. Typical access is read-only to allow users to download files. However, you can also provide them with write or read/write privileges to give permissions to upload (through command line or FTP client). By providing them with the URL, they can view and download files.

What is an Anonymous Folder?

Sharing an anonymous FTP folder will grant access anonymously (no password required) by any person who knows the folder’s public address. You can choose to give: read-only, write-only, or read-write access to the folder.

A common use of anonymous folders is to distribute freely available files to anyone who wants to download them. The folder’s public URL can be posted on your website or distributed by any other method you wish.

Use Case Example


A software company requires to share new updates to their product whenever there are improvements or new features and to keep customer’s previously purchased software up-to-date.


Using anonymous sharing, the company can provide the same URL to all customers by embedding a link in their site, or sending emails, etc. Customers can download the update whenever necessary from the FTP server without needing to log in. The company can also share multiple anonymous folders and have different links for various products.

Steps to Setup Anonymous Access

Login to your Hosted FTP account and go to the Files tab. Create or select the folder you want to share, then click on the Share button to open sharing settings.

In the checklist locate and checkmark Allow anonymous _ access to this folder and in the drop-down menu select whether to give Read, Write, or Read/Write access.

Read – Permissions to view and download files
Write – Permissions to upload only (cannot view files)
Read/Write – Permissions to download and upload files

Checkmark Hide folder from anonymous access listing to prevent bots and searches from finding your URL.
Checkmark Display downloaded files directly in browser to allow media files (i.e. images and PDFs) to show in the browser.

Save your settings and click on the Browse button to locate your URL.
The folder should have this format: ftp://YourDomain.hostedftp.com/~Username/FolderPath

i.e. ftp://hftptutorial.hostedftp.com/~hostedftp-Tutorials/ExampleAnonymousSharing
or ftp://webinar.hostedftp.com/~webinar/construction

Anonymous Access through CLI or FTP Client

Use CLI or any FTP client to connect to the anonymously shared folder.

Hostname: ftp.hostedftp.com (default) or your domain
Logon type: Anonymous
Default remote directory: /~Username

*Note: the ~ (tilde) character must be included in the username

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