FileZilla – Adding an Alias

Posted by bcherney on January 28, 2009 under Nerd Herd | 5 Comments to Read


If you are going to use FileZilla for more than a personal ftp server… chances are you are going to use aliases. I’m OK giving web designers general access to our web servers but AE’s and Marketing guys/gals are a different story. If they need to FTP a presentation or report I want them to log in – pick the clients folder – upload the file – get out. :)

I’m fairly new to FileZilla so it took me a couple tries to understand how to setup an alias. There are two different approaches. You can use “short aliases” or “long aliases”. Both worked for me so I’m not sure if one is considered better than the other. If you have an opinion let me know. I am leaning toward short aliases in case you move the users home folder in the future.

Here is an overview. You can only have one “Home” folder per ftp user you setup. For this example the users home folder on the server is “C:\users\brian”. Every time brian logs into the ftp server he will start in his home directory. The user can not move back in the directory structure so if they need access to a clients folder on the sever we have to create an alias to that folder. Once you create an alias the next time brian logs in there will be a client folder he can click on.

filezilla_aliasSo lets set it up.

Brian needs access to “C:\clients\clientX” folder and “C:\clients\clientY” folder.

We will set up each one differently but the end result will be the same.

Get to the shared folders section for your user in the FileZilla Server console. You should have one directory listed with an “H” next to it. That is the current users home directory like we mentioned before “C:\users\brian”.

Add a new shared folder. For this example we will browse and select “C:\clients\clientX”.

OK. You have added the client folder but at this point the user will not see it in their home directory when they log in. This is where the alias comes in.

“Short Alias” = right click the new folder you just added. Choose “Edit aliases”. Don’t bother reading the instructions. They make sense once you do it a couple times but for a new user I can see how it is a little confusing. Type in “/ClientX”. This will create an alias to the user “Home” folder when they sign in. By clicking on it they can access the ClientX on the server.

“Long Alias” = Follow the instructions above except browse to the “ClientY” folder. Once you are ready to enter the alias type the full home directory and the folder you want as an alias. “C:\users\brian\ClientY”. This will do the exact same thing as above. The user will now see two folders when they sign in…. ClientX and ClientY.

  • Ed said,

    First off thank you for the directions. I am new to running a web server and I thought creating an alias was what I needed. It was nice to finally get some contexted to the path you setup in the alias.
    I think I might have an idea for using the long alias. That looks like it would come in handy when you don’t want your aliases off the home directory. For instance when you create a clients folder in the home directory and you want all of your other clients aliases to be located in that directory off the home.

    Thanks again, it all makes sense now.

  • Aaron said,

    I wasted about an hour in the Filezilla forum trying to figure out aliasing (which seems a bit backwards without explanation). Thank you for taking the time to make this clear presentation. My aliases are working and the world is now once again a better place. Thanks again.

  • Ivan said,

    Thanks a lot!
    I followed your instructions successfully.
    At the end I just had to refresh the FileZilla client (F5) to see the new folders.
    Thanks again

  • Pete said,

    Thanks for this guide, I was missing the / before the alias name which was stopping it from working.


  • Xuggs said,

    Thanks a gazillion. This explains aliases better then anything I could find on the web. Works like a charm now. Thanks again.

Add A Comment