I am a non-profit who is transferring my site to Netfirms and their "plus" shared hosting plan. All they give me is FTP access, and a silly decompressor webapp called "Archive Gateway" that can decompress .tar, .zip, .gz and .z.

Netfirms expects me to upload my whole site by FTP.

I'm trying to avoid uploading 20GBs from my puny residential connection.

Netfirms doesn't give me SSH, so running wget, split, cat or ftp from netfirms is not possible.

My old host gives me SSH access, and I ran ftp there to send my site-backup.tar to NetFirms, but this SSH cuts me off when it senses I'm away from the console for several minutes. Only 800MB gets transferred.

I tried using a .PHP script in Netfirms to retrieve site.backup.tar from the old host but this script times out.

  • Can tar create split archives of around 500MB each with no files split in between?

  • Can you suggest how I can transfer 20GB of site data to Netfirms?

In the meantime, I will try to figure out how to archive my 20GB site into several 500MB tars.

  • 20GB of web content is a lot of content. Considering your level of expertise and content size, are you sure that it's worth it moving to a service with such limitations? An operation like this would require the servers admins involvement.
    – Osvaldo
    Oct 1, 2011 at 8:45
  • If you have SSH access, read man nohup
    – danlefree
    Oct 1, 2011 at 19:27
  • @danlefree: ftp requires interactive input, I'm afraid, i.e., cat script | ftp doesn't work, so sorry nohup doesn't work on it either. :(
    – William C
    Oct 2, 2011 at 5:12

2 Answers 2


Create a text file named ftp_commands in the same directory as your large archive file.

The contents of the file should resemble the following:

open example.com
user username p@ssword
put archive_file.tar.gz

Save the file and run nohup ftp -ni < ftp_commands &

  1. Initiate ssh-session with keep-alive settings on
  2. Long time ago child processes was not not terminated, when I close ssh by hand and later return back

You can also try to use FXP (FTP server-to-server transfer) is SRC-server support this extension

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