FTP (File Transfer Protocol)  Guide (Updated January 2010)

INTRODUCTION

This document outlines the service, use and operational procedures for the FTP server provided by the Province of British Columbia, Ministry of Forests and Range (MFR), Information Management Branch (IMB).

CONTENTS

DESCRIPTION OF SERVICE AND PURPOSE

An FTP server found at http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/ftp/ has been installed to enable Ministry of Forests and Range staff to exchange information with other MFR offices, the forest industry, contractors, government agencies and other non-MFR users. This server is virus scanned, backed up and under the operational responsibility of the IMB.

APPROPRIATE USE OF THIS SERVICE

The external directories are provided as a mechanism for electronic exchange of documents, reports, notes and other appropriate public accessible information between the Ministry of Forests and Range and the forest industry, contractors and other non-MFR users.

The gov_internal directories are provided as a mechanism for electronic exchange of documents, reports, notes and other appropriate forestry related information within the Government of British Columbia.

The mof_internal directories are provided as a mechanism for electronic exchange of documents, reports, notes and other appropriate forestry related information within the Ministry of Forests and Range.

Security

Care should be taken in using this service that acquisition or transmission of computer viruses does not occur, and that documents that are confidential or not public domain are not placed on the server.

All files are scanned for viruses as they are being written to the server. The scan automatically removes infected files.

File Size

Care should be taken to the size and amount of files being transferred. Geographic location and connection type/line speed will effect the rate of transfer. Large file transfers can degrade data network performance slowing other Ministry business traffic. If possible, use an FTP Client to schedule large transfers outside normal business hours.

USER LOGON / ACCESS

Downloading Files (copying files from the FTP server)

Files can easily be downloaded using a web browser and going to the following URL.

http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/ftp/

Directory browsing is enabled so you can click through the directory structure and gain access to the directories you have permission to view. (See DIRECTORY STRUCTURE AND DESCRIPTION below for detailed information on permissions.)

Uploading Files (placing files onto the FTP server)

For the non-Ministry of Forests and Range user, an FTP Client will be required. This is a utility that needs to be installed on your computer. Many can be found and downloaded from the internet including free versions. Follow the instructions of your FTP Client and logon with the following. Note that Windows internet Explorer (IE) has a built-in FTP client. See below for info.

FTP Server: ftp.for.gov.bc.ca
USERID: anonymous
PASSWORD: your email address

Using Internet Explorer FTP Client

External clients can write to an office's \External\Incoming\ folder (note: once a file has been uploaded the client will not have read access to the file nor will they be able to delete or over-write the file)

For Ministry of Forests and Range staff, a connection can be made using Windows Explorer. A network drive can be mapped using \\ACHERON.DMZ\FTP. If you are unsure how to do this contact your local systems staff.

NOTE to staff relocating files on the FTP server: Ensure you COPY files to a new location to ensure the file obtains the new directories security permissions. If you only MOVE the file it will retain the old directories security permission and your intended audience may not be able to access the file.

If you prefer to use FTP Client (perhaps for bandwidth issues) you will use your IDIR account. Logon with

FTP Server: ftp.for.gov.bc.ca
USERID: IDIR\userid
PASSWORD: your password

Since network monitoring can trap passwords, DO NOT logon to this service with your password from outside the BC Government telecommunication facilities. i.e. SpanDial, UDial or your Ministry office

DO NOT logon using a private sector Internet service provider, universities or free-nets.

If you do wish to connect via an Internet service provider, such as Shaw cable modem or Telus ADSL, from your home or non-ministry office, you need to install a Virtual Private Network (VPN) service. For staff, information about VPN is available from the ministry Intranet site; search for the keyword VPN.

Use the url as above (ftp://ftp.for.gov.bc.ca) to anonymously download or upload files. Download works the same as browsing. For upload, drag a file from your desktop to the open browser window. Or use copy/paste from Windows Explorer to IE. For authenticated access, when you click on a directory and get a "do not have permissions" message, just right-click on that page and select "Login as...". Login as shown above.

DIRECTORY STRUCTURE AND DESCRIPTION

FTP _
  | _ !HowToUseFTP
| _ !Project
| _ !Transfer
| _ DBA   (a 3 letter directory for each office, also called an Org Unit code)
  | _ DCC
  | _ DCH
  | _ etc....

!HowToUseFTP

A directory containing a couple of user guides about how to use this FTP service. For example, the guide you are reading is located here.

!Project

Files pertaining to cross-ministry projects and possibly requiring some external access. The general public and ministry staff have no inherent access to these subdirectories; members of a project group are specifically provided access to easily share files amongst the group.

!Transfer

Area to accommodate the ad hoc transfer of files between MFR staff. Note that all files over 7 days old are deleted on a daily basis. The general public has no access.

3 letter directory for each office (also called an Org Unit code)

Each ministry office has a directory. To keep the directory names short, the name of the directory is based upon the office's three (3) character OrgUnit code. While this is perhaps a tad cryptic, it does keep the length down, which is something people have commented about in the past when we had long names that used the actual office name.

The structure of the OrgUnit code has a bit of logic:

List of Offices

For a list of all the Orgunit codes and their respective office names, please refer to the document contained in the http://www.for.gov.bc.ca/ftp/!HowToUseFTP/ directory, namely, FTP_Directory_Key__Index_of_Office_Org_Units.txt.

Each Office directory contains three subdirectories

_
| _ external
| _ gov_internal
| _ mof_internal

external

Used for the transfer/sharing of files between MFR staff and the forest industry, contractors and other non-MFR users.

gov_internal

Used for the transfer/sharing of files between MFR staff and other Government of British Columbia staff.

mof_internal

Used for the transfer/sharing of files between MFR staff.

Each external, gov_internal and mof_internal directory contain three subdirectories

_
| _ !publish
| _ incoming
| _ outgoing

\ external \ !publish

Files are published here by select local MFR staff intended for the forest industry, contractors and other non-MFR users. Files placed here remain indefinitely, as such, only select local MFR staff have write access.

Public access: read-only
BCGov access: read-only
MFR access: read-only
Select MFR access: read/write/delete

\ external \ incoming

Files are placed here by the forest industry, contractors and other non-MFR users intended for local MFR staff. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: write-only
BCGov access: write-only
MFR access: write-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

\ external \ outgoing

Files are placed here by local MFR staff intended for the forest industry, contractors and other non-MFR users. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: read-only
BCGov access: read-only
MFR access: read-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

\ gov_internal \ !publish

Files are published here by select local MFR staff intended for other Government of British Columbia staff. Files placed here remain indefinitely, as such, only select local MFR staff have write access.

Public access: none
BCGov access: read-only
MFR access: read-only
Select MFR access: read/write/delete

\ gov_internal \ incoming

Files are placed here by other Government of British Columbia staff intended for local MFR staff. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: none
BCGov access: write-only
MFR access: write-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

\ gov_internal \ outgoing

Files are placed here by local MFR staff intended for other Government of British Columbia staff. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: none
BCGov access: read-only
MFR access: read-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

\ mof_internal \ !publish

Files are published here by select local MFR staff intended for other MFR staff. Files placed here remain indefinitely, as such, only select local MFR staff have write access.

Public access: none
BCGov access: none
MFR access: read-only
Select MFR access: read/write/delete

\ mof _internal \ incoming

Files are placed here by other MFR staff intended for local MFR staff. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: none
BCGov access: none
MFR access: write-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

\ mof _internal \ outgoing

Files are placed here by local MFR staff intended for other MFR staff. Files are automatically deleted after 7 days.

Public access: none
BCGov access: none
MFR access: read-only
Local MFR access: read/write/delete

TEST FTP SERVER

A test FTP service is available which can be used when required. The ftp server names are much like the production FTP server:

MOF STAFF ADMINISTRATION

MFR offices that make use of this server are responsible for the administration and maintenance of their directories. This should include ensuring that files and sub-directories are deleted in a timely manner and that files are consistent with Ministry business. Files received must be erased once they are accessed. Files put up for access by others should be removed after the others have received or copied them. Each area must keep their respective directories clean and organized. There is an automated process that runs daily to clear out 7 day old files from the !Transfer, incoming and outgoing directories.

Directories created under the !Publish folders should contain a ReadMe.txt file that contains the following information:

FTP Directory Owner:
FTP Content Owner:
Retention Date:
Description: This directory contains ...