Chapter 10: FTP: Searching Archives, Downloading Files 

Exercises and Projects

This set of exercises and projects is designed to give you practice using anonymous FTP. Along the way you will see some of the resources available. In some exercises you’ll be asked to find a location, or URL, of similar files or resources. To do that, use any of the search services with which you are familiar.

1. Most Usenet news groups have a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) which is archived on an FTP server at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Use your Web browser to retrieve the contents of the directory whose URL is ftp:// rtfm. mit. edu/ pub/ faqs. Add this URL to your bookmarks or favorites. (Note: RTFM is the place to go when you want to Read The Fine Manual.)

a. Download the ftp-list FAQ from ftp:// rtfm. mit. edu/ pub/ faqs/ ftp-list/ faq. Under the question "What is Anonymous FTP?" is a list of what is available in FTP archives. What can you find?

b. Would you say that the FTP FAQ is up to date? Explain.

2. Some computers can be accessed with both the FTP protocol and the HTTP protocol.

a. Open the following two URLs in your browser and write a comparison of what you see in your browser's window: ftp:// uiarchive. cso. uiuc. edu http:// uiarchive. cso. uiuc. edu

b. Now do the same for these two URLs: ftp:// ftp. cdrom. com http:// ftp. cdrom. com

c. Access the Gutenberg Project mirror at the University of Illinois at ftp:// ibiblio. org/ pub/ docs/ books/ gutenberg/ and write a brief description of the project. Look at ftp:// uiarchive. uiuc. edu/ pub/ etext/ gutenberg/ GUTINDEX. 0 1 and describe the kinds of etexts available via FTP from the Gutenberg Project. List three titles.

d. Does ftp:// ftp. cdrom. com/ pub have a mirror of the Gutenberg Project? If so, what is its URL? Does ftp:// ftp. cdrom. com/ pub also mirror the Garbo and Simtelnet archives? What are their URLs?

e. What ftp archives are mirrored at ftp:// mirrors. aol. com?

3. Retrieve part 1 of the shareware FAQ from ftp:// rtfm. mit. edu/ pub/ faqs/ shareware-faq. Summarize the rules that govern the use of shareware. What is the difference between shareware and freeware?

4. Here's a link to a favorite site. Go to http:// arachnoid. com, locate the "Downloadable Programs" link, and download and install on your computer the program AboutTime, or another program you find there. Do you need to unzip these programs, or are they self-extracting? Take some time to look at this site. The guest book is always busy! Most people would call the software available here freeware, but its author, Paul Lutus, calls it "CareWare." Download his description of CareWare from http:// arachnoid. com/ careware/ index. html, read it, and write a brief description of the concept. Then, do it!

5. People downloading software from the Internet should protect their computer systems from viruses.

a. Download the computer virus mini-faq from ftp:// rtfm. mit. edu/ pub/ faqs/ computer-virus. What does the author of this FAQ have to say on the question "Is there a best anti-virus software?"

b. Download and install an anti-virus program from one of the mirrors of http:// www. tucows. com. Follow the links on the TUCOWS home page to find the nearest mirror and the appropriate application for your operating system. If you are using Windows 98, and if you are in Iowa, then your URL would be something like http:// tucows. marshallnet. com/ virus95. html.

6. Go to http:// shareware. cnet. com and http:// ftpsearch. lycos. com.

a. Use these two search services to find the PKZIP compression program. Try the various forms (normal, medium, advanced, etc.) of both these search engines. Which of the two seems easier to use? Explain.

b. Use your favorite Web search service to locate the PKZIP compression program. Explain whether it was easier or harder to find PKZIP via a Web search or an FTP search

c. Scroll down the page to find today's five most popular downloads at shareware. com. What are they?

d. Using the file name or keyword "sunset" (or another term of your choice), search for the file type .jpg from http:// ftpsearch. lycos. com. Download five of them, then write down the URL of the one you like best.

7. Have some fun! Download a holiday theme for your desktop and/ or a screensaver from http:// eunet. freethemes. com. Use the search form to find a screen saver for an upcoming holiday Follow the directions on that page for installation. What protocol moved the file from the server to your machine? HTTP or FTP? How do you know?

8. Download and install the appropriate version of the ws_ ftp software from Junod Software, http:// www. ipswitch. com/ Products/ WS_FTP. Use the same techniques discussed in Activity 10.2.
Using ws_ ftp, download at least two files, from different sites, mentioned in the chapter or in the previous exercises. (Ws_ ftp will already be configured to take you to a number of ftp archives.) Do you see any advantage to using an FTP client rather than a Web browser for accessing FTP archives? Any disadvantages? Explain.