How to FTP Files From Email Using an iPad

When the iPad was announced in January, it was the very first time Apple created something that I immediately wanted. I’ve never been an Apple fanboy, I don’t work on Macs for either my primary workstations or laptop – I use them for testing and ensuring compatibility only. But the iPad was different. I immediately saw it’s purpose as consumption device and it’s promise as a productivity tool.

The naysayers that tagged the iPad as “the iFail” seemed to focus on how it fails as a laptop or netbook, and how it lacks the features expected of those devices. While there are definitely limitations to what you can do, and how easily certain tasks can be accomplished, I gave Apple the benefit of the doubt, based on their track record, and knowing that this is a first generation device. As Edgar Bronfman, Warner Music Group CEO noted “No one’s got rich betting against Steve Jobs.”

Having never purchased a Kindle or netbook, I was looking forward to the 3G iPad enabling me to essentially ditch my laptop while traveling, and be a complete solution for any media (reading, music, movies) consumption needs. Most of my colleagues derided the “working exclusively from the iPad” notion as wishful thinking, and told me to be sure to pack the laptop as well. After using the iPad for over a month now, I’m looking forward to proving them wrong this week, as I thoroughly road test it during SMX Advanced. I’ve spent the last few weeks assembling the various tools (apps) that I’ll need, setting up accounts, passwords, etc. and can honestly say, with the benefit of the cloud, there’s nothing that I’d need to take care of while on the road, that I can’t do on the iPad.

Most of the apps that I use or need, relate to development – managing sites, updating sites, and keeping the trains running on time. To that end, these are the tools I employ on the iPad:

The Tools

The lack of mulitasking (for now) on the iPad, means accomplishing some tasks can be a little tricky, or are at best, not intuitive. One such task involves taking an attachment from an email, and getting it onto a server to use in post, on a page, or otherwise link to. To accomplish this – you really just need one .99 app – GoodReader.

Step-by-Step: How To FTP Email Attachments on the iPad

  1. Download the GoodReader app
  2. Configure your email account(s) under “Connect to Servers” in the right pane
  3. Configure your FTP account(s) under “Connect to Servers”
  4. Connect to the email account with the attachment by selecting that account under “Connect to Servers”
  5. Find attachment needed (GoodReader will automatically poll your account for any messages with attachments) and download it by selecting it/clicking on it from the email window
  6. Close the email dialog box – the dowloaded file should now appear under “My Documents” in the left pane
  7. Click “Manage Files” in the right pane
  8. Select the attachment in the left pane, then in the right pane, click “copy”
  9. Click “Connect to Servers” and select the FTP server
  10. In the pop up window for the now-connected server, navigate to the folder you want to upload the file to
  11. Click “Paste” (button in lower right corner of server window)
  12. …and you’re done!

Michelle is the Director of Technology for Sphinn, Search Engine Land, Search Marketing Expo & Search Marketing Now at Third Door Media.

Michelle has been designing, developing, deploying and marketing web sites for a variety of business sectors since 1996. From 1999 to 2006 she grew her web development consultancy to implement online presences, develop custom applications and various web marketing initiatives for such companies as American Airlines, Honda Civic Tour, DMX Music, and more. Prior to striking out on her own, she worked with Danny Sullivan at one of Southern California’s first online agencies and web server software development startups. Before crossing over to technology, Michelle spent 4 years on the management team in marketing and promotion at the Walt Disney Company’s record label.

Connect with Michelle on Twitter
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