Mounting external FTP unbearably slow for extremely large directory structures.

Discussion in 'macOS' started by rockincoder, Feb 20, 2011.

  1. rockincoder macrumors newbie

    Feb 20, 2011
    So I am in a real bind. I just fully switched from Windows to Mac which is great. However the one thing I mainly need for work is to work directly on my company's FTP server which is in a remote location. Through windows I accomplish this fine with Webdrive, I can map as network drive and work directly off the drive as I would any other folder, saving uploading/downloading using a regular FTP program.

    Now that I have moved to Mac (10.6.6), I went to install Webdrive, and use this same functionality and as before. (Also I have tried any other mounting programs... ExpanDrive and event the built in Mac Connect to Server with same results). However I have run into a serious issue; Webdrive (and others) connects perfectly to my FTP server on Mac, and mounts fine, and when I browse to the volume in either Finder, or Pathfinder I get the initial directories which is fine, and I can browse into a few of the subfolders that have a small amount of files fine. My issue lies in that the main folders I need to work with are extremely large folder structures. They have approximately right under 1000 subfolders, all containing different amounts of subfolders and files of all sizes.

    Trying to browse into these folders is pretty much impossible. I sat on the phone with Apple tech support for over an hour trying different things and they could still not give me any suggestions as to how to get this working properly if it's even possible (their only suggestion was to use parallels or vmware and try to put the network drive on windows into the shared folder of the mac/virtual server, which I personally think is a ridiculous workaround). When I browse to those folders, finder just sits and has to (I'm guessing do some sort of caching) on the entire directory of thousands of folders/files. I finally let it sit long enough and it took about 15 minutes to finally see the directory listing and then drilling down into the subfolders took long amounts of time as well. This is a problem as I use it for work, where me as well as others work directly off the files on the server, so there is no issues with uploading/downloading using a standard FTP and overwriting other files, etc.

    I have troubleshooted my FTP server, and have no issues connecting through it with any FTP software in Mac. Using 3rd party FTP software I get an instant dir listing of the large folders and can work with them fine, so I am at my wits end as to what I can do to get my a finder to work like this and view the folders/files quickly. Basically I have had no issues with this on windows, or using ftp 3rd party software on mac or windows, just mounting it through finder.

    I can also mount the drive, then use terminal and browse through all the directories/folders perfectly fine as well. So I am open to suggestions if anyone knows of a way to work through terminal or a program that works with terminal.

    So I am posting to see if anyone has a possible solution or workaround for this. Any/all suggestions are greatly appreciated.
  2. tersono macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2005
    The problem is Finder, which tends to be slow.

    Try Xfile if you want to stick with your existing arrangements - you'll find it will display the folder structure MUCH more quickly. Alternatively try one of the ftp programs that look and feel more like finder. I use Transmit for much of my file management needs - both local and remote.
  3. satcomer macrumors 603


    Feb 19, 2008
    The Finger Lakes Region
    Use something for external FTP like ExpandDrive or Transmit since the Finder only reads FTP drives.
  4. rockincoder thread starter macrumors newbie

    Feb 20, 2011
    You are a life saver! Xfile works sooooo much better than the others for what I'm trying to do. The GUI is slow and I get the pinwheel a lot when I'm in the main folder that contains 900+ folders, but once I drill down into what I need it is way faster! Thank you again!

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