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the problem may be very common.

When I transfer files to my FTP server all the files are transferred instead only the changed ones: For example one file on my disk has 7556 bytes and on ftp server it is 7305 bytes (same file, but different way of calculating it on both sides). So that it gets transferred even though I haven't changed there anything.

The same thing is with time difference: if I'm a few hours behind server's time my files are treated as older (assuming of course that the changes were made within those few hours) and don't get transferred.

So what I currently do is either transferring them all, or selecting them manually. But the downsides are obvious: it costs transfer limit and time and in the second case I might forget something and it also takes time.

How do you deal with it? I know there are services that host svn repos and then synchronise with ftp server. But I'm looking for a simple solution to that. I'm working on Windows XP and WAMP and using FileZilla currently. I'm looking for a free solution.

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I've been using the free version of SyncBack to synchronize my files using FTP across my network, and it seems to handle situations like this fairly well. SyncBack relies on file timestamps, so you need to set your server up properly as well. – Breakthrough Jan 12 '12 at 14:06
Wow thanks. I'm using it already for synchronising folders on my local system. Didn't see that it had this "Expert" button where all FTP options are. Thanks! And I can even point a folder on FTP server that I want to synchronise my folder with. Great. – cradox23 Jan 12 '12 at 14:30
up vote 2 down vote accepted

No need for a different FTP program - you can do this with FileZilla. In the Transfer menu, select "Default File Exists Options". Set Uploads to "Overwrite file if source file newer".

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Here's the part you may have missed! Note the warning about time zones. Because your server is in a different time zone than your workstation, set a timezone offset in the site manager.

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Does this apply to CLI transfers as well? – Dustin Laine Feb 20 '13 at 18:28
As far as I know, you can't execute a transfer using Filezilla from a command line. Is that what you're asking about? – Dave Becker Feb 20 '13 at 22:56
FZ has a CLI, However there are no commands/switches for this option. – Dustin Laine Feb 21 '13 at 16:03

Maybe you would prefer a tool like ftpsync is synchronizes a local directory tree and a remote FTP directory tree. It was initially written to automize web publishing, but other purposes might be fulfilled also.

I haven't tried it, this isn't a recommendation.

I'd search for "FTP sync" and evaluate a variety of tools.

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