FTP support in Eclipse using Aptana 2.0

Here we’ll try to solve this issue: the lack of ftp support from eclipse IDE

Eclipse is an IDE but greatly based on external plugins and FTP is no exception!

Few words for Aptana

Aptana is a standalone IDE itself based on eclipse so it comes as no surprise that there is an official Aptana plugin for eclipse. Aptana has many great features but someone must spend precious time to explore them all.

As yourself, I imagine, me too I spend some hours reading vague or uncompleted tutorial about installing aptana plugin in eclipse and exploiting its ftp plugin.

First of all let’s make clear that Aptana 3.0 behaves much differently from Aptana 2.0 in a way which is explained in this link: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/6477915/aptana-studio-3-with-ftp

The main difference is this: Aptana 2.0 ftp just edits remote files while Aptana 3.0 synchronizes local files with remote files reducing bandwidth and allowing a local copy of your files.

Although the advanced features of Aptana 3.0 seem intriguing they require much more configuration. Furthermore I would like to edit my project using different computers / laptops from office, home etc. and I am not sure if the way aptana 3.0 works can verify this synchronization.

That’s why I will stick with Aptana 2.0. and once a while remember to download the whole directory from FTP server for backup purposes.

Install Eclipse Indigo with PHP support

You probably already use Eclipse but right now I just downloaded Eclipse Indigo (version 3.7) classic. Unfortunately a PDT download is no longer available :(

BUT you can use Help -> Install new software… and inside the dropdown list of "Work With" select:

"Indigo - http://download.eclipse.org/releases/indigo"

click Next, click Next, click Finish, wait for installation, restart eclipse.

Now PHP support is enabled

Install Aptana 2.0 eclipse plugin

again go to Help->Install new software… and copy paste the following link inside "Work With":


once more, next, next, accept licences and finish. Wait for installation and accept not-signed material. Restart eclipse

Configure Aptana 2.0 eclipse plugin for FTP

What you are looking for is hidden in here: Window->Show View->Other…

Now expand "Aptana Views" and select "File"

Just as a personal preference I drag the "File" view at the left of the eclipse window

Right click FTP and Add a simple or secure FTP site, it’s up to you

Configure FTP connection as usual by providing server hostname, username, password and the remote path (maybe you do not have access to the root folder)

You will be asked for a master password for the secure storage of your saved passwords which correspond to the username of each ftp connection. This has nothing to do with your FTP password. Use whichever password you like

That’s all! Now you have a tree view inside eclipse where you can browse your local as well as your FTP files and edit them in a common transparent way. All you need next is a reliable and fast enough internet connection!

Enjoy and build!

Remember the above is just a snapshot and the most updated version of this text is located at the following note in my profile in facebook:

(in case of a broken link please do NOT hesitate to contact me :)