Here's an easy way to maintain an FTP archive from your Macintosh desktop
by Dave Winer, email@example.com
Lots of people are publishing software via the Internet. Maybe you are too? If you have a Mac and Frontier, with the new ShipShop suite, maintaining an FTP archive of your apps is as simple as choosing a command from the Finder's menu bar.
The basic ingredients are Fetch, StuffIt, Frontier, the Finder and the ShipShop package.
Here are links to download the stuff you need:
How to Install
Launch Frontier. Open the ShipShop folder, and double-click on each of the 6 files. Click on OK in response to the confirmation dialogs.
Be sure the OSA Menu extension is installed in the Extensions sub-folder of the System Folder. You'll find OSA Menu in Frontier's Misc Stuff sub-folder. OSA Menu enables menu sharing in the Finder. ShipShop adds a new sub-menu to the Scripts menu in the Finder's menu bar.
Setting up ShipShop
Choose "Open user.shipShop" from the ShipShop submenu of the Scripts menu in the Finder's menu bar. Frontier comes to the front and a table is revealed:
Figure 1: user.shipShop with initial settings
These settings tell shipShop where to upload BinHex files, and where to store them on your local computer. account, domain and password tell the scripts how to log onto your FTP server. directory is the path to the directory on the server that will hold your FTP files. Local copies are stored in the Macintosh folder pointed to by binhexfolder. By default, the files are stored in a sub-folder of the Frontier folder. You can change this at any time. The folder is automatically created by the scripts, if necessary.
With Frontier running, bring the Finder to the front and locate the ShipShop sub-menu at the end of the Scripts menu. It contains five commands. The last one, Ship Selected Folders, ships all the selected folders. I guess that's not a major surprise. Its single keystroke is cmd-1.
Once ShipShop has been set up, any time you want to ship a folder to your FTP site:
- Be sure Frontier is running;
- Select the folder in the Finder;
- Press Cmd-1.
You can select as many files or folders as you like. Each one will be uploaded separately to the directory specified in user.shipShop.
Since the scripts do FTP uploads using Frontier's ftpClient suite, you can actually use any compatible FTP program, so if you prefer Anarchie, for example, it'll work. Just be sure Anarchie is running before shipping a folder. The ftpClient suite automatically routes FTP messages to the FTP client app that's running. It also respects your Internet Config preference, so it will launch Anarchie if it's the FTP client you've chosen thru IC. It was much easier to write the docs specifying a single program for FTP, but it should work equally well with Anarchie.
Your First Script -- Step-by-step tutorial for adding your own commands to the Finder's menu bar.
Outliner Crib Sheet page explains how to work with Frontier's built-in outliner.
Using the Scriptable Finder from Apple -- After you've mastered the ShipShop suite, look thru the rest of the Scripts menu in the Finder's menu bar. You'll find 40+ new commands! Nerdy and useful things that you always wished the Finder would let you do.
I'm Serious about Website Scripting -- Pointers to all the pages on this server that talk about website scripting.