While Apple Compressor does not support FTP directly, you can easily download an Automator action, created by Peter Dekkers, which allows you to compress files then send them automatically to the web via FTP.
First, download and install the “Upload to FTP” Automator action from Peter’s website:
Accept all the default settings during the installation, this places the file in a location where Automator can find it.
NOTE: An action, by itself, can’t be read by Compressor. Instead, we need to convert this action into a Workflow, using Automator.
Next, open Automator. Automator is an application that creates workflows, or scripts, that Compressor can execute. It is installed with the operating system; you’ll find it in the Applications folder.
NOTE: Actually, Automator is a very powerful scripting tool in itself; however, for our purposes here we are just using it to create a workflow that Compressor can use.
After Automator opens, on the left is a list of all the categories for which actions exist. Click Other.
If the action installation was successful, you’ll see Upload to FTP listed in the second column. Drag this into the big white space on the right.
This displays a blank form that will hold the settings for your FTP server. Fill these in for the website to which you want to transfer the files. Be very careful to match spelling and punctuation exactly.
Make sure to include the Directory into which you want to transfer the files, otherwise, the files will end up in the top level folder of your website.
NOTE: If you don’t know these settings, check with your webmaster or your web server hosting service to obtain them.
After completing this form, choose File > Save. Give this workflow a name and save it where you can find it again. This file is what you will need to access from within Compressor.
Automator workflows can only be applied to jobs, not compression settings. So, import a file, or files, to compress.
Select the imported file by clicking its name in the Batch window.
Open the Inspector, make sure Job is displayed at the top, then scroll to the bottom, under Action, and choose When Done > Run Automator Workflow.
Scroll down a bit further and click the Choose button. Navigate to the workflow you just saved and choose it.
Apply one or more compression settings to the file and click Start Batch.
At this point, Compressor will compress your file, then process the workflow to upload the compressed file to the FTP site you specified earlier when you created the workflow.
The biggest problems I have with creating FTP scripts is accurately entering the server and directory settings. This may take some experimenting to get correct. However, once these settings are right, the process of automating FTP transfers is fast and easy.
You can create as many different versions of this workflow as you need. For example, create one for each website location that you need to transfer files. Once you see how this works, you can use it in a variety of situations.
NOTE: Remember, Compressor already has built-in file transfer options (called “Job Actions”) for most major social media sites.
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