Do we have an FTP server or a Windows PC connected with files shared on the network that we want to access from our iPhone or iPad? Let’s see how to do it.
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How to connect FTP on iPhone and iPad
In the following chapters, we will show you all the apps we can use on iPhone and iPad to access a shared network resource on a PC or Mac (in this case we will have to be connected to the same Wi-Fi as the shared resource) or to a remote resource ( FTP, WebDAV) using the LTE or 5G connection of our device.
How to connect to an SMB server (Windows or Mac File Sharing)
After seeing how to share files and folders on a computer network on Windows PC or Mac, it becomes possible to access them from iPhone and Mac directly using the app File, usually already present on all Apple mobile devices. Before proceeding, we open the computer where we created the network share and recover its local IP address, as seen in our guide Find another computer’s IP address.
Retrieved the IP address of the shared computer, open the app File on our iPhone or iPad, press the icon with the three dots at the top right, and press on the item Connect to the server.
In the window that opens, enter the IP address obtained a little while ago, confirm by pressing the Next item at the top right and, in the new screen, enter the access credentials for sharing (in the case of a PC with Windows we will have to enter the user name and the password of the account used for access). If the sharing is free (ie without a password), we can also check the Guest item and proceed immediately with access to the shared folders. After adding the SMB server to the Files app, it will be accessible under the section Shared in the menu Browse.
If we are looking for another effective app to manage SMB network shares we can download LAN drive for free SAMBA Server Client, available from the App Store.
Once the app is installed, we will be able to quickly access shared resources on our local network, using the automatic recognition system or manually entering the IP address to reach. In addition to the client mode, this app allows you to start an SMB server, so as to also share the internal memory of the iPhone and iPad.
How to connect to an FTP or SFTP server
If our server is shared on the Internet via FTP protocol (or rather SFTP, with the addition of connection encryption), we can access it wherever we are using a free app such as FTPManager, accessible from the App Store.
By starting this app we will be able to add all the FTP servers of which we know the access credentials and of which we also know the web address or public IP address. With this app we will be able to quickly drag files from the remote resource to the internal memory of the Apple device (and vice versa), follow the symbolic links inside the SFTP folders, and obtain advanced information on the size and number of files in a given folder. remote.
Alternatively, we can use another free app to access FTP servers: Documents by Readdle, available on the App Store.
This app can be considered the best file manager for iPhone and iPad since it supports all types of remote connections and allows you to open any document without using other apps. For the purpose of this guide, we can use it to add an FTP server by opening the app, pressing down on the menu Connections, pressing on the voice Server FTP The Server SFTP, entering the login credentials and the IP address of the server, and pressing the key Fine.
How to connect to a WebDAV server
WebDAV is still widely used for sharing entire folders or disks on the network, so as to make them accessible even when we are out of the office. Compared to FTP, it is much faster and faster in accessing folders and managing files within network resources. If we need to connect to a WebDAV or WebDAV server (the version with connection encryption) we recommend that you download the app My WebDAV, available on the App Store.
With this app, we will be able to quickly establish the connection with the WebDAV server, by entering the login credentials and the web address of the server. Within the interface we will be able to copy, move and delete files as if we were physically present in front of the server, without waiting times; obviously, we can also copy and move the files from the internal memory of the iPhone or iPhone to the WebDAV server and vice versa.
Alternatively, we recommend using the app Documents by Readdle, which we already told you about in the previous chapter: it supports all types of remote connections, including WebDAV and SMB.
If in the company we often use network shares, NAS and remote servers to store work documents and PDFs with reports and summaries, being able to access them also from iPhone and iPad will dramatically increase our productivity, since we will be able to manage every aspect of our work even when we are not in the office and we need to retrieve a file of utmost urgency when we are in the car, on the train or anywhere in the world.
If we want to deepen the discussion on network sharing and remote folders, we invite you to read our guide Remote connection from Mac to Windows, FTP server, and WebDav. If, on the other hand, we are looking for another method to always have filed at hand without having to create a dedicated server, we recommend that you read our guide Best Cloud apps for Android and iPhone to save files without taking up memory.