Telnet and FTP


Telnet Clients
Compression FTP
Archie Software Archives
Anti Virus Info FTP Client

The popularity of the World Wide Web is a fairly recent development. Mosaic, the first graphical Web browser made available to the public, was released in November 1993, and people were using the Internet for 20 years before that.

Information was and is still shared on the Internet through the services or protocols Telnet, FTP, and Gopher.

  • Telnet allows login access to another computer on the Internet. It's used to execute programs (like database searches) on remote computers.
  • FTP, file transfer protocol, is the basic means of copying a file from one computer system to another.
  • Gopher, made available in 1991, became an extremely popular service because it gave access to information and services on the Internet through a relatively easy-to-use menu system.

Here are some examples of access to information at the Library of Congress using each of these protocols:



Some examples of information available through Telnet:

About Telnet

For more information about Telnet check some of these resources on the Web:

Telnet Clients

A Telnet client is a program on your computer that you use to access a site through Telnet Some sources for Telnet clients:

Compression Programs

Files and programs are often compressed and put into packages to save time downloading the software and to save space in archives. Two popular programs used for this purpose are:

For more information about file formats on the Internet take a look at these resources:


FTP, file transfer protocol, is used to transfer files from one computer on the Internet to another.

In the text we look at retrieving an image of Mars, Mars global picture (page 224+226), from an FTP archive maintained by NASA, NASA JPL ftp site (page 224+226)

Some other FTP archives are:


Archie is a search tool for finding files in FTP archives. For information about Archie take a look at Archie Home Page - Bunyip Information Systems Inc. (page 230).

Some sites that give a Web-based interface to Archie are:

Software Archives

Software archives are sites that maintain collections of software available as shareware or freeware. Shareware software is available for a trial at no charge. You try the software and pay a fee if you decide to keep it. Freeware is available for use at no charge.

Some sites that list FP and software or shareware archives:

Here's a list of some specific software archives:

Want to know more about downloading files? Check out these links:

Anti-Virus Software and Information

You will want a program that checks files for computer viruses. Several are available, and you can get shareware versions to evaluate and decide which you like best. Here are some resources:

FTP Client

You can work with files using FTP through a web browser, but you may also want to use an FTP client. That's software on your computer that you use for FTP. There's one built in to Windows. To access it click on Start, select Run, type ftp, and press enter.

One client that's reliable and relatively easy to use is WS-FTP. To get a copy and for information about using it check these resources:


Like the WWW, Gopher puts the focus on the information, not on learning different techniques.Gopher essentially only presents information in menus of only text. It was very popular in the early 1990's, but it's not popular now since the Web and graphical Web browsers allow information to be shared in a hypermedia environment.

Check these links for more information about Gopher:

There isn't much information available through Gopher and what is available isn't generally well maintained. Here's a list of some sites that have collections of information that is (or was) available through Gopher:

Other Links Mentioned in the Text

Introduction to the Internet
& the Web
Using a Browser Email Finding Information
Glossary HTML Telnet & FTP Issues Search Strategies
This material has been prepared to accompany the book "Internet Today: Email, Searching & the World Wide Web" ISBN 1-887902-43-0, by Ernest Ackermann and Karen Hartman, and published by Franklin, Beedle and Associates, Incorporated, Wilsonville OR, ©1999. No part of this may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transcribed without permission of the publisher. Feel free to browse this Web site. Please write to Ernie or Karen to let us know if you make a link to this site.

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