Connect to FTP Server with your Android Device

FTP stands for File Transfer Protocol. FTP operates on a client-server architecture, where the FTP client initiates a connection to the FTP server using the FTP protocol. It is commonly used for website maintenance, software updates, and file sharing. For example, many website developers, owners still use FTP to upload and download files, create new directories, delete old files and folders, etc. On computers, we can use dedicated FTP software tools such as FileZilla, Cyberduck, WinSCP, etc. Other than that, the stock File Explorer on Windows computer allows us to connect to FTP servers without third-party tools. The Finder on Mac also has built-in support for FTP connections, allowing you to access and transfer files to and from an FTP server without the need for additional software. On mobile phones, however, we still need to use FTP apps or apps that provide FTP connection functionality.

There are FTP client applications available for both Android and iOS devices that allow you to connect to FTP servers and upload/download your website files. Documents by Readdle (for iOS), which is primarily known as a file management app, includes an FTP client feature. It allows you to connect to FTP servers, upload and download files, and manage your files locally on your mobile device.

Have you wondered if any way to transfer files between your server and your Android phone or tablet? Most Android powered devices don’t natively support FTP connections currently. In order to connect your FTP server using Android device, you can choose to download third party FTP client apps or file explorers with FTP support on the Android device. We can use Cx File Explorer app, MiXplorer File Manager, Solid Explorer or other similar apps as the FTP client to connect to FTP server from our mobile phones.

Here we will use Cx File Explorer app and MiXplorer File Explorer in the demo to show you how to quickly and easily connect to FTP servers from our Android phones. We will outline the easy steps to connect a FTP server from Android to transfer files between FTP server and your Android device. You can download and try both apps. They are both powerful, easy to use and free.

Method 1. Connect to FTP server using MiXplorer on Android

Get MiXplorer file explorer app that comes with FTP server support. Purchase this file explorer app from Google Play Store or download it for free from its official website.

Download and install the app on your Android device. Open the file explorer app, tap the Add (+) button from the bottom toolbar, choose Add Storage from the pop-up menu. You will see all supported connection or storage types.

add storage, ftp server to android mobile phone using mixplorer

Choose FTP (S,ES) from the above list. Then input your FTP server details as shown on below screenshot.

add ftp server to android phone using mixplorer app
  • FTP address: ftp://yourdomain or ftp://yourftpserverIP;
  • Username: ftp account name;
  • Password: the password for above ftp account;
  • Display name(optional): a descriptive name of your FTP server.

Tap Save button to save the FTP connection. You can then access your FTP server from Android phone to create new or edit files on server, copy or upload files from phone to FTP server, download files from FTP server to Android phone, etc.

Method 2. Connect to FTP server using Cx File Explorer on Android

Do a search to find it on Google Play store and Download this app on to your mobile phone.

Install and launch the file explorer on Android mobile, switch from the LOCAL to the NETWORK tab.

cx file explorer for android - network

Then tap on New location > REMOTE > FTP or SFTP.

cx file explorer android phone to access remote file server

A dialog pops up where you can enter the required information about the FTP server to connect.

cx file explorer connect ftp server from android phone
  • Host: FTP server IP or your domain name.
  • Port: FTP default port number is 21.
  • Username: your FTP account login username.
  • Password: the password for your FTP account.

Once you filled in the above required details, tap on OK button to connect to the FTP server. The file manager will retrieve the files and directories from the FTP server and list them on your Android device. You can then copy files from your phone to FTP server or the other way around.

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