8.5 The .netrc File
.netrc file contains login and initialization information
used by the auto-login process. It resides in the user's home
directory. The following tokens are recognized; they may be separated
by spaces, tabs, or new-lines:
- ‘machine name’
- Identify a remote machine name. The auto-login process searches the
.netrc file for a machine token that matches the remote machine
specified on the ftp command line or as an open command
argument. Once a match is made, the subsequent .netrc tokens
are processed, stopping when the end of file is reached or another
machine or a default token is encountered.
- This is the same as machine name except that default matches any name.
There can be only one default token, and it must be after all machine
tokens. This is normally used as:
default login anonymous password user@site
thereby giving the user automatic anonymous ftp login to machines not
specified in .netrc. This can be overridden by using the
-n flag to disable auto-login.
- ‘login name’
- Identify a user on the remote machine. If this token is present, the
auto-login process will initiate a login using the specified name.
- ‘password string’
- Supply a password. If this token is present, the auto-login process
will supply the specified string if the remote server requires a
password as part of the login process. Note that if this token is
present in the .netrc file for any user other than anonymous,
ftp will abort the auto-login process if the .netrc
is readable by anyone besides the user.
- ‘account string’
- Supply an additional account password. If this token is present, the
auto-login process will supply the specified string if the remote
server requires an additional account password, or the auto-login
process will initiate an
ACCT command if it does not.
- ‘macdef name’
- Define a macro. This token functions like the ftp
macdef command functions. A macro is defined with the
specified name; its contents begin with the next .netrc line
and continue until a null line (consecutive new-line characters) is
encountered. If a macro named init is defined, it is automatically
executed as the last step in the auto-login process.
ftp utilizes the following environment variables.
- For default location of a .netrc file, if one exists.
- For default shell.
Correct execution of many commands depends upon proper behavior by the
An error in the treatment of carriage returns in the 4.2BSD ascii-mode
transfer code has been corrected. This correction may result in
incorrect transfers of binary files to and from 4.2BSD servers using
the ascii type. Avoid this problem by using the binary image type.