Google Cloud FTP Setup with FileZilla (Quick Start)

July 20, 2017Leron AminComments Open

In this tutorial you will learn how to quickly setup FileZilla to remotely manage your files for websites running on Google Cloud Platform. This is quick-start tutorial is designed for websites running on Google Cloud’s compute engine.

Setting up FileZilla FTP is a quick and easy way to remotely manage your website’s files.

To get started, follow along with the video above. If you get stuck, check below to see the steps listed individually with images.

Before starting this tutorial, you should have already created a Google Cloud Platform account and launched a website on the Google Cloud Platform Compute Engine.

So let’s get started.

There are 7 steps in this tutorial:

  • 1. Download PuTTY and FileZilla

  • 2. Generate SSH Keys

  • 3. Copy and save the keys

  • 4. Paste Public Key in Google Cloud

  • 5. Upload Private Key in FileZilla

  • 6. Establish Connection to Google Cloud

  • 7. Navigate to your root directory

1. Download PuTTY and FileZilla

putty and filezilla logos

The first step in this tutorial is to download PuTTY and FileZilla.

Putty is an SSH Key generator. You will use this application to generate a private/public key pair in order to encrypt the connection between your Google Cloud platform instance and FileZilla.

FileZilla is the FTP Client that we will use to securely manage our Google Cloud website’s files straight from our desktop.

2. Generate SSH Keys

google cloud ftp setup generate putty key files ssh
After you’ve downloaded PuTTY Key Generator, open the application and click the “Generate” button to create a new pair of SSH Keys. After clicking the “Generate” button, move your cursor under the progress bar to generate your SSH key files.

3. Copy and save the keys

google cloud ftp setup save ssh key files
After your SSH Key files have been generated, copy the public key text from the top box, and download the private key file by clicking the “Save private key” button.

4. Paste Public Key in Google Cloud

google cloud ftp metadata edit ssh keys
From the hamburger menu in the upper left-hand corner of your Google Cloud Platform dashboard, navigate to Compute Engine > Metadata > SSH Keys. Click the “Edit” button.
google cloud ftp paste ssh public key
Scroll to the bottom of the “Edit” page, click the “Add item” button, and paste the Public Key text that you copied in Step 3 into the box. Finally, click “Save”.

5. Upload Private Key in FileZilla

google cloud ftp filezilla navigate to settings
Open FileZilla, and navigate to Edit > Settings.
google cloud ftp private key filezilla
From the left-hand column of the settings menu, navigate to Connection > FTP > SFTP. Click the “Add key file…” button, and select the private key file that you downloaded in Step 3.

6. Establish Connection to Google Cloud

In order to establish a connection between Google Cloud and Filezilla, you will need both the IP Address to your instance, and the username for your SSH Key.

google cloud ftp copy key
From your Google Cloud dashboard, navigate to Compute Engine > VM instances, and copy the IP Address of the instance you wish to connect to. Also, copy your SSH username, which is displayed in both the key comment section of the putty dashboard and at the end of your public key text.
google cloud ftp connect with filezilla
Back in the FileZilla dashboard, type “sftp://” followed by the IP Address of the instance you wish to connect to. In the username field, paste your PuTTY username.
Lastly, click the “Quickconnect” button.

7. Navigate to your root directory

google cloud ftp open folder
After you’ve connected successfully, click the very top folder in the “Remote site” section at the right-hand side of the screen.
google cloud ftp enter root directory
Once this directory is open, navigate to your root directory by pasting the directory path in the remote host field.

If you’re running the Bitnami version of WordPress on Google Cloud, your root directory is located at:

/opt/bitnami/apps/wordpress/htdocs

If you’re running the Click-to-Deploy version of WordPress on Google Cloud, your root directory is located at:

/var/www/html

That’s it!

If you run into permission errors, click here to fix the problem.

If you are looking to configure your SSH Keys using the Cloud SDK gcloud command-line-interface, you can check out that tutorial here.

Please leave any questions and comments below!

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