Category: Blogging

January 23, 2016

Connecting to an SFTP Server with an FTP Client

The Problem

Recently I upgraded this web site to a new service provider. The new service provider only supported secure ftp (SFTP) for uploading/downloading of files to/from the server and this meant that any client software that did not support SFTP was effectively rendered useless.

I’m quite reliant on software like Windows Live Writer for posting blog entries and WebLog Expert for analysis of server log files. However, both of these software clients only use “regular” ftp for uploading/downloading files. I momentarily thought I would not be able to use them but soon realised there must be some software that provides a bridge between an FTP client and an SFTP server. A quick Google soon revealed the software I thought was most suitable for the job.

The Solution

Bitvise SSH Client

According to their web site Bitvise SSH Client for Windows includes state of the art terminal emulation, graphical as well as command-line SFTP support, an FTP-to-SFTP bridge, powerful tunnelling features including dynamic port forwarding through integrated proxy, and also remote administration for our SSH Server.

I downloaded a trial version of the software and very soon found myself purchasing a licensed copy as I found it quite suitable for my needs and simple to use.

Firstly you capture the login credentials of the SFTP server you are connecting to

Bitvise SSH Client SFTP Login Screen

Secondly you activate or establish the ftp to sftp bridge. This effectively creates a local ftp interface at IP 127.0.0.1 (localhost) which can be used by any client software that would like to connect to the server through the tunnel.

Bitvise SSH Client FTP to SFTP Bridge Creation

Lastly, you can now configure any client software you have to connect using Bitwise. In the examples below I show the ftp details you would enter for Windows Live Writer image upload via ftp and the Weblog Expert ftp details you would specify to download log files for analysis from your Web Server.

WebLog Expert FTP Configuration

WebLog Expert ftp configuration

Windows Live Writer image FTP setup

Windows Live Writer FTP Setup for Images

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February 15, 2008

Setting up Word 2007 for Blogging using the MetaWebLog API

In the past I’ve used Blogjet and Windows Live Writer (WLW) as blogging software clients. I prefer using blogging software clients rather than writing an article from scratch as I’m no HTML expert and once they’re setup they are fairly easy to use. They also seem to give you more control and flexibity when it comes to performing advanced functions such as picture manipulation and formatting. If you want to look at potential blogging clients you could make use of then take a look at this review and comparison of 10 different blogging clients.

Microsoft Word 2007 now allows you to use it as a blogging client and I’m looking at using it more frequently as it allows you to do fancy stuff such as tables, clipart, shapes, smartart and charts. For a good comparison of Word 2007’s blogging features with those of Windows Live Writer read this blog entry. Other useful Word 2007 blogging resources and links from Microsoft are:-

I’m also an avid user of Microsoft OneNote 2007 and you can now blog from OneNote using its integration with Word 2007. To blog a OneNote entry all you have to do is right hand click and choose the Blog This option which will then drop the entry directly into Word ready for publishing to your blog.

Word 2007 allows you to blog on the following platforms and services: -

If you don’t use any of the above blogging services then you make use of the Metaweblog or Atom API which is what I’ve had to do since I run both my blogs using ExpressionEngine. When I first started using Blogjet I penned a blog entry on Setting up Blogjet for ExpressionEngine as there are a few tricks involved especially with setting up the ftp connection to upload images. Setting up Microsoft Word 2007 for blogging is also a process of trial and error and I’ve written this entry to outline how I finally managed to setup Word 2007 for use with ExpressionEngine via the MetaWebLog API.  The main steps involved are outlined below, including the setup of picture options which allow the upload of images to your ftp server.

Step 1 - Register a blog account

Open Microsoft Word 2007, click on the Office Button, then choose Publish > Blog

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Publish > Blog

If you haven’t already setup a blog you will be given the option to register a blog account and will need to click on the Register Now button. In the instance where you’ve already registered a blog account Word will go directly to Step 2.

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Register a Blog Account

Step 2 - Manage Your Blog Accounts

Once you have reached the Manage Your Blog Accounts screen select New to setup a new blog.

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Manage Your Blog Accounts

Choose other for your blog provider

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Choose your blog provider

Choose the MetaWebLog API and enter the blog post URL. Within ExpressionEngine the Blog Post URL can be found in the modules section under the MetaWebLog API. You should also specify the username and password used to gain access to your blog.

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Enter New Account Information

Following completion of your new account information and successful communication with your blog (including acceptance of your username and password) the following message should be presented to you: -

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Successful Account Registration

Step 3 - Manage Picture Options

Should you wish to add pictures, tables, clipart, shapes, smartart and charts to your blog entries within Word then you will need to setup the Picture Options in a manner that will allow the files to uploaded to an ftp server. The first step is to click the Picture Options button seen in the New Account screen shot above and then select my own server as illustrated below.

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Picture Options, my own server 

After selecting your own server you will need to specify the details of your Upload URL and Source URL as outlined in the example below (note that certain information has been blanked out for security reasons)

Setup Steps Word 2007 Blogging - Picture Options, source and upload URL

Having completed these steps you will now be ready to publish your blog entries using Word. Note that at the point of publishing pictures you will be asked to specify a username and password for the ftp server.

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December 1, 2005

New Personal Business/Blog Card by Street Cards

I recently ordered some new business/blog cards from a site called Street Cards.

There are loads of sites online that design business cards but this is one of the few I know that does blog cards.

I chose one of the standard designs under their web category as I just need something to give out to people I meet that mentions my web site and contact details. Here’s what my new business card looks like:

From the Front

Blog Card for Richard Byrom from the front

From the Back

Blog Card for Richard Byrom from the back

Let me know what you think!!

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