Thanks to the hundreds of one-click file sharing websites online, the use of FTP for casually sharing files has drastically reduced. The protocol is all but relegated to just uploading and downloading files to a server. But as simple as file sharing websites are, using them means giving up a lot of control over the data you have uploaded.
If you want to retain this level of security and control, FTP is still the way to go. Now you might say, Mac OS X comes with a built in FTP Server, so why would anyone want to pay for a third party solution? Read on after the break to find out how and why Rumpus is a better solution for creating your own server.
Rumpus makes it easy for anyone with an Internet connection to run their own FTP and web file transfer server. Clients who have access to your network can effortlessly upload and download files directly to your server, using dedicated FTP clients or a modern web browser.
Yes, Rumpus does indeed have a web interface, which supports all major web browsers on both Mac and PC, and is fully customizable to match your existing website. Rumpus is also capable of ensuring secure connections, with encrypted transfers and full user access controls.
Installation & Set Up
You get 30 days to test drive all the features of Rumpus. The Rumpus installation wizard is a bit different from the ones I have seen in the past. Links to resources that help you get started with the app are displayed in two rows. What makes them notable is that all resources are available for reference locally – even before you install the app!
Unlike some other apps which link to their help and FAQ section of their homepage, you do not have to switch back and forth between the browser. Tiny arrows to turn the pages of the document right from the installation wizard is a nice touch.
The journey towards setting up a FTP server unwinds in three simple steps. In the first step, you will have to select the folder from where the transfers happen. Users will be restricted to this Home Folder and after setting up, you can assign or restrict users to their own dedicated folders.
Creating a secure user account is the second step. This account is the admin account, yet it can still be used by other users to connect to the server (though not recommended). It is also possible to make this account anonymous – meaning no username & password is necessary to connect, however, such an account is just read only. Multiple user accounts with varied levels of access permission can be created later.
Enabling the Web File Manager (WFM) is the final step. WFM enables you to connect and manage the server over the web and might come in handy if you are accessing a machine that does not have Rumpus desktop app installed.
After a splash screen that summarizes the connection settings, we are off to test the app!
Starting the Server
Rumpus impresses you with a neatly designed control panel at first glance. All the icons have a clear description of their functionality to make your life easier. A successful installation does not start the server by itself so once you are ready, hit the Start Server icon on the top right corner to bring the server online.
To ensure that bandwidth is used efficiently and securely, connection rules can be defined from the FTP Settings screen. Standard sets of rules like timeouts, number of simultaneous connection and the default FTP port can be managed from here. This is the place you will have to come to if you plan to turn the FTP server off.
From the logs tab, comprehensive logs to keep track all connections, errors, transfer details etc. can be created. Custom messages on successful connection and disconnection, along with extensive encoding options, are all available under their respective tabs.
The activity monitor lists all users connected to the FTP server including complete details of the file being transferred, the speed at which it transferred, the progress of the file transfer and more. By selecting a user, detailed information including the IP address and bytes transferred can be obtained.
The Web FTP feature is one of the USPs of Rumpus. Web browsers capable of understanding the file transfer protocol and can be used in lieu of a fully blown FTP app. However, they are often a major pain to use and rarely support file uploading.
Rumpus offers a unique solution to this problem through the Web File Manager, which puts an attractive HTML interface on your FTP server. Now you can control the FTP server from the comfort of a web browser and this feature is possible because of the built-in Web server that delivers most of the same features of FTP using a simple, customizable HTTP interface.
When it comes to serving files over the Internet from your servers, Rumpus does everything right. Except for controlling the packets being transmitted, Rumpus offers numerous features to keep all aspects of file transmission under control. To be very particular, the ability to control the user rights while connecting and transferring data is thorough and comprehensive.
Rumpus ensures you the much required peace mind that no one can download or upload data that you have not screened yourself. A great feature in this era of digital piracy. For those planning to run FTP servers from their own infrastructure, Rumpus is the ideal choice if they could not find a free, open source app with similar set of features.
Rumpus makes it easy for anyone with an Internet connection to run their own FTP and Web file transfer server. Clients who have access to your network can effortlessly upload and download files directly to your server, using dedicated FTP clients or a modern Web browser.8