September 29th, 2011, 02:13 PM
Open MS Office Documents over FTP? Please help
Firstly I should explain I am new to the technology of FTP but I have a problem I need help with please?
I have built a web site (ASP) that allows staff to login and using a web UI, accesses their files in their 'home' directories on the local network but from any computer outside the organisation.
Everything works and all their folders and files are listed in a web page with links and when clicked, it automatically logs them in to the FTP site (via ftp://usernameassword@sitename) in the link and downloads their word documents or spreadsheets etc...
This is where the problem lies. What I wanted is for the user to click the link in the web UI, up pops the "Would you like to open or save the document" window from their browser and if they click 'Open', the document would open directly from the FTP site. This is what I wanted to happen so if they make any changes and click 'Save', the document would be written back to the FTP site.
It appears however, when the user clicks 'Open', it asks them to choose somewhere locally to save the file. That's not what I wanted at all.
The FTP site is on a Windows 2008 R2 with IIS 7.5. Is there a setting within IIS I can change (the users have read / write access) the FTP site that would allow users to open and edit directly from the FTP path?
Any help here would be greatly appreciated.
September 29th, 2011, 02:40 PM
No. Such functionality is not possible: they must download, edit, and reupload the file.
It is somewhat possible on the user's computer but you cannot control any part of it over the web. In the end Windows would be doing the same work but automatically and behind the scenes.
September 29th, 2011, 04:11 PM
Thanks requinix for your reply. That is a bummer.
Another thing I have been testing this evening is accessing the FTP site through Windows Explorer (no Web UI at all) but found something quite alarming with this method.
The FTP site asks the user to authenticat so I entered a 'standard' user name and password and was authenticated - fine. However, I could access network folders on the FTP site that they do not have access to. As an example: logged in as little Jimmy with his username and password and double-clicked the Administrators home folder and hey presto - I could open any document in this folder using FTP. Windows security on the Administrators home folder would block little Jimmy. Bloody hell. Little Jimmy could also open the office managers wages spreadsheets and everything.
What the hell is the point of FTP then? Couple this with having to open another port (21) on the router, it dosen't seem very safe to me.
Not impressed with FTP at all. Very unsecure in my opinion.
Thanks again though requinix for your swift reply.