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Because of my web host, I can't use FTP. There's a file I'd like to download. How can I do this through ssh?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Mar 17 '10 at 21:46

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6 Answers 6

If you're on linux, simply use scp from the command line like this:

scp user@host:/path/to/file .

If you're on windows, I recommend FileZilla. It's a good free ftp client that supports file transfer over ssh (sftp).

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Good to know that FileZilla works on Linux too. But power users will use command line. ;-) –  Ionică Bizău May 23 '13 at 14:13

secure copy (SCP)

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As you are most familiar with ftp, you should use sFTP as previously mentioned.

You can use an FTP client, such as FileZilla and apart from creating the connection, everything will then work the same as if you were using ftp.

It is easy to set up and you don't need to learn anything new.

On the other hand

scp server:/path/to/file . 

is the quickest way to transfer one file.

Another alternative if you are running Linux is that you can map the ssh server as if it were a local drive using sshfs from the command line or on the GNOME desktop:

Places > Connect to server...

and choose SSH from the drop down, enter your hostname username and password and you can drag and drop files in a file manager.

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ssh .... cat somefile > somefile
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If you have KDE installed (most probable if you are on a Unix-like system), you can use the fish IOSlave. Simply type fish://username@domainname_or_IP/ in the address bar of konqueror, for example. Most KDE applications can treat files on a remote SSH host as if they were local files this way.

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Use SFTP:

In computing, the SSH File Transfer Protocol (also Secret File Transfer Protocol, Secure FTP, or SFTP) is a network protocol that provides file access, file transfer, and file management functionalities over any reliable data stream. It was designed by the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF) as an extension of the Secure Shell protocol (SSH) version 2.0 to provide secure file transfer capability, but is also intended to be usable with other protocols. The IETF of the Internet Draft states that even though this protocol is described in the context of the SSH-2 protocol, it could be used in a number of different applications, such as secure file transfer over Transport Layer Security (TLS) and transfer of management information in VPN applications.

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