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How to Set Up FTP Exports
How to Set Up FTP Exports

Set up and manage file transfers to an external server from Zentail

Michael Goldmeier avatar
Written by Michael Goldmeier
Updated over a week ago

File Transfer Protocol (FTP) is a standard network protocol used for the transfer of computer files between a client and server on a computer network. More secure FTP derivatives include SSH File Transfer Protocol (SFTP) and FTP-SSL (FTPS). Zentail users can leverage SFTP and FTPS to export data from Zentail and transfer it to their own, or an externally hosted, server. 

A common use-case of this tool is to set up a scheduled report on Zentail, either of product or sales data, and transfer this report to an externally hosted server. This article covers the steps to set up an FTP export. To learn about creating an FTP import check out this article.

Step 1: Go to your Zentail Settings > FTP Servers and create a New FTP Server by filling out these fields:

  • Specify a unique Label to identify this server,

  • Address: Also referred to as the Host or FTP URL, this is the url where Zentail will transfer the file. Please format this as

  • Username and Password: These are the credentials that Zentail can use to access files on the external server.

  • Protocol: Select the correct protocol for your server (SFTP or FTPS). This depends on the protocol required by your hosting service. If you are unsure which to select, please contact your host to verify.

  • Click "Submit" to save your newly created FTP server.

Step 2: Go to the Export page and select the report you wish to export.

  • Check the box for Transfer This Report. Two new fields will now appear for the Server and Filename.

  • From the drop-down list of the servers you have created in Zentail, select the one that's the destination for this report.

  • In the Filename field, provide the full path to the file on the server. This should include the extension (.csv, .tsv), that you want it to appear as on the remote server i.e /Uploads/report.csv

Selecting FTP server

Step 3: To run this report on a regular cadence, check the Schedule This Report box and identify the frequency you prefer. Read more about creating scheduled reports. Alternatively, you can use the blue Start Generating Report button to run it once immediately.

Scheduling cadence options


What is the filename?

The file name is defined by the destination field.

What if I don't include an extension in the destination?

If you do not include an extension in the destination (ie. "/Uploads/report" without ".csv" or ".tsv"), it depends on the software you are using for how it will try and open it the file.  Some software will try to guess the format, others will just open the file as text.

Can this be scheduled to regularly transfer a file?

Yes! The schedule this report tool is very useful when setting up an FTP. Please note that any existing files in the destination with the same name (like previously transferred versions of the same report) will be overwritten with the most recently transferred file.

How will the headers of the file appear?

The headers of the file will appear exactly as they would on a normal file export from Zentail. They will appear as the attribute is labeled within Zentail's data dictionary. If you are unsure how they will appear, you can download a template of the report.

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