Create, monitor, and manage FTP files by using Azure Logic Apps

With Azure Logic Apps and the FTP connector, you can create automated tasks and workflows that create, monitor, send, and receive files through your account on an FTP server, along with other actions, for example:

  • Monitor when files are added or changed.
  • Get, create, copy, update, list, and delete files.
  • Get file content and metadata.
  • Extract archives to folders.

You can use triggers that get responses from your FTP server and make the output available to other actions. You can use actions in your logic apps to perform tasks with files on your FTP server. You can also have other actions use the output from FTP actions. For example, if you regularly retrieve files from your FTP server, you can send email about those files and their content by using the Office 365 Outlook connector or Outlook.com connector. If you're new to logic apps, review What is Azure Logic Apps?

Note

The FTP connector supports only files that are 50 MB or smaller unless you use chunking for handling large messages.

Also, the FTP connector supports only explicit FTP over SSL (FTPS) and isn't compatible with implicit FTPS.

Prerequisites

  • An Azure subscription. If you don't have an Azure subscription, sign up for a free Azure account.

  • Your FTP host server address and account credentials

    The FTP connector requires that your FTP server is accessible from the internet and set up to operate in passive mode. Your credentials authorize your logic app to create a connection and access your FTP account.

  • Basic knowledge about how to create logic apps

  • The logic app where you want to access your FTP account. To start with an FTP trigger, create a blank logic app. To use an FTP action, start your logic app with another trigger, for example, the Recurrence trigger.

Connect to FTP

Before your logic app can access any service, you must create a connection between your logic app and that service. If you didn't previously create this connection, you're prompted for connection information when you add a trigger or action for that service to your logic app. The Logic Apps Designer provides an easy way for you to create this connection directly from your logic app.

  1. Sign in to the Azure portal, and open your logic app in Logic App Designer, if not open already.

  2. For blank logic apps, in the search box, enter "ftp" as your filter. Under the triggers list, select the trigger you want.

    -or-

    For existing logic apps, under the last step where you want to add an action, choose New step, and then select Add an action. In the search box, enter "ftp" as your filter. Under the actions list, select the action you want.

    To add an action between steps, move your pointer over the arrow between steps. Choose the plus sign (+) that appears, and then select Add an action.

  3. Provide the necessary details for your connection, and then choose Create.

  4. Provide the necessary details for your selected trigger or action and continue building your logic app's workflow.

Examples

FTP trigger: When a file is added or modified

This trigger starts a logic app workflow when the trigger detects when a file is added or changed on an FTP server. So for example, you can add a condition that checks the file's content and decides whether to get that content, based on whether that content meets a specified condition. Finally, you can add an action that gets the file's content, and put that content in a folder on the SFTP server.

Enterprise example: You can use this trigger to monitor an FTP folder for new files that represent customer orders. You can then use an FTP action such as Get file content, so you can get the order's contents for further processing and store that order in an orders database.

A valid and functional logic app requires a trigger and at least one action. So make sure you add an action after you add a trigger.

Here is an example that shows this trigger: When a file is added or modified

  1. Sign in to the Azure portal, and open your logic app in Logic App Designer, if not open already.

  2. For blank logic apps, in the search box, enter "ftp" as your filter. Under the triggers list, select this trigger: When a filed is added or modified - FTP

    Find and select FTP trigger

  3. Provide the necessary details for your connection, and then choose Create.

    Create FTP server connection

  4. Next to the Folder box, choose the folder icon so a list appears. To find the folder you want to monitor for new or edited files, select the right angle arrow (>), browse to that folder, and then select the folder.

    Find and select folder to monitor

    Your selected folder appears in the Folder box.

    Selected folder

Now that your logic app has a trigger, add the actions you want to run when your logic app finds a new or edited file. For this example, you can add an FTP action that gets the new or updated content.

FTP action: Get content

This action gets the content from a file on an FTP server when that file is added or updated. So for example, you can add the trigger from the previous example and an action that gets the file's content after that file is added or edited.

  1. Under the trigger or any other actions, choose New step.

  2. In the search box, enter "ftp" as your filter. Under the actions list, select this action: Get file content - FTP

    Select FTP action

  3. If you already have a connection to your FTP server and account, go to the next step. Otherwise, provide the necessary details for that connection, and then choose Create.

    Create FTP server connection

  4. After the Get file content action opens, click inside the File box so that the dynamic content list appears. You can now select properties for the outputs from previous steps. From the dynamic content list, select the File Content property, which has the content for the added or updated file.

    Find and select file

    The File Content property now appears in the File box.

    Selected "File Content" property

  5. Save your logic app. To test your workflow, add a file to the FTP folder that your logic app now monitors.

Connector reference

For technical details about triggers, actions, and limits, which are described by the connector's OpenAPI (formerly Swagger) description, review the connector's reference page.

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Next steps