How to upload files using WinSCP with FTPS and SFTP

WinSCP is a popular freeware FTP/SFTP client for Windows.

This guide assumes you have installed WinSCP (external link opens in a new window), and have a valid FTP account with which to connect.

  1. Setting up WinSCP to connect to your account
    Open WinSCP, and you will be presented with the site manager dialogue.
    If you want to connect using FTPS (FTP via explicit SSL/TLS) then go to Step 2.
    FTPS allows you to connect using the cPanel username and also using any additional FTP usernames you can setup in cPanel's FTP Accounts icon.
    If you want to connect using SFTP (Secure-FTP achieved via the SSH system) then go to Step 3.
    SFTP will only allow you to connect using the cPanel username and password, and will give the FTP user access to the entire cPanel account - this is ideal for the account owner.
  2. Connection settings using FTPS, also known as FTP-SSL (Explicit AUTH TLS)
    File protocol drop-down: Choose TLS/SSL Explicit encryption
    Host name: Enter your home server name here (it may differ from the example shown) - if this is entered wrongly, then WinSCP will have trouble connecting.
    Port: Leave default (21)
    User name & Password: Enter your cPanel username and password, or the FTP account username and password you created using the cPanel. Again, this will differ from the example shown.
    The Advanced... button allows further customisation, but the default settings will connect fine.
    Click the Save button to save this profile for later use, and then click the Login button to connect.
    1. FTPS Advanced settings
      We strongly recommend against modifying any Advanced settings unless you are confident in what you are doing. In particular, the above setting under TLS/SSL, if unticked, will prevent WinSCP from obtaining any directory listings.
  3. Connection settings using SFTP, also known as Secure-FTP or SSH-FTP
    File protocol drop-down: Choose SFTP
    Host name: Enter your home server name here (it may differ from the example shown), or your domain name, or the server's IP address
    Port number: 722
    Username & Password: Enter your cPanel username and password
    Click Save, to save the profile, and then use the Login button to connect.
    Advanced settings - again, we recommend against modifying any advanced settings unless you are confident in what you are doing.


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