Frequently Asked Questions

What is FTP?

FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol and is the oldest method for transferring files between a client and a server. Before the many popular ways of managing website files that are available today, websites were predominantly managed using FTP with desktop clients such as Cute FTP and WS FTP.

Web pages were built in a desktop editor, such as Hotdog, Homesite and FrontPage, saved locally, and then uploaded directly to the web server using a desktop FTP client (or FTP was built in to the webpage editor.)While not as popular today as the late 90s and early 2000s, FTP is still widely used to move files between computers.

How does Monsta FTP work?

Monsta FTP takes your FTP client off your desktop and puts it on the web. Monsta FTP is written in PHP and Javascript and you install it as a sub-folder of your website, like

Once installed, you can access your FTP server from any device, anywhere, without needing to install FTP software; all you need is your browser.

Monsta FTP acts as a man-in-the-middle between your desktop and your FTP server. This means all files up/downloaded between your device and your FTP server pass through the Monsta FTP install.

When you upload a file from your device, it is first uploaded to the client server where Monsta FTP is installed, and is then transferred on to the FTP server. The same is true for downloads, but in reverse. In most cases, however, the client server and FTP server are the same (where you install Monsta FTP on the same server where your website is hosted.)

Are there file size limits?

Because Monsta FTP is a web-based application your file uploads are first uploaded to the client server's memory, before then being transferred via FTP to the remote server (yes, even if this is the same server.) By default, PHP has a a maximum memory usage per request, which is normally 128MB. You can adjust the limit a number of ways, but you may be limited by your server administrator as to what size you can increase uploads to.

Can I customize Monsta FTP?

Monsta FTP is proprietary software, and as such, modifying the code is expressly forbidden. Making changes to code creates difficulties when upgrading as any changes will be over-written. We've also found that users who make changes to their code require more support when things break.

We do however give you the tools to change the interface with the ability to disable certain options such as CHMOD, file editing, uploading etc.

Can I rebrand Monsta FTP?

Yes! Rebranding with your name, logo, and color scheme are available in the Enterprise Edition.

Can I hide the host address and other details?

Yes, in the Business Edition upgrade you can set a fixed host address (and other login credentials) to restrict how users can use your Monsta FTP install.

Does Monsta FTP run on Windows servers?

Yes! Monsta FTP runs on any standard PHP install, which includes Windows IIS.

Can I preview images with thumbnails?

Short answer: no. Long answer: Monsta FTP is a client that connects to remote servers (although we understand for many users this is the same server.) As such, to generate thumbnails would require downloading every image file from the remote server to the local server, which would significantly slow down your file browsing. In summary, it's simply not efficient or practical for a client/host process.

Can I zip/unzip files?

Yes, you can select multiple files and folders to zip and download. You can also upload a zip file and unzip on your remote server.

Can I assign users to their own folders?

This is not something you need to do via Monsta FTP. When you (or your webhost) set up FTP users you should normally have the option to set a home directory. This can be different for each user, so they have their own file space. Monsta FTP will log users into whatever their home directory is set to, and will restrict them to this specific folder.

Can I hide system files from users?

Yes, as the installer you can opt to hide system files from all users, or you can make them visible and let each user decide if they want to hide system files (using cookies.)

What encryption is used for storing logins?

Either aes-256-cbc (AES256), or if that’s not supported on the system, bf-cbc (blowfish).