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From "Michael D. Hirsch" <>
Subject [VFS and Net] Dealing with non-standard FTP servers
Date Fri, 17 Sep 2004 18:01:07 GMT

I'm new to this list, but I've been a happy user of commons-vfs for several 
months, now.  It's saved me tons of work, but now I'm running up against what 
I think are its limits.  I'm looking for advice on how to get around a 

I am is using commons-vfs to retrieve files from various sites.  In 
particular, I'm now trying to get files from a server which is not supported 
in the standard collection of FTPFileEntryParsers.

There are several obstacles for me to do this--some are of my own making and 
others are in the commons code.  I'll try to separate them out.

The main problem is that even though the server presents non-standard file 
lists, it claims to be of system type "unix".  This means that commons-net 
will attempt to  parse it like a unix server, and that doesn't work on this 

I could define my own FtpFileEntryParser and register it with 
DefaultFTPFileEntryParserFactory, but there doesn't seem to be a way to 
register new parsers--it appears to be hard coded into createFileEntryParser 
in DefaultFTPFileEntryParserFactory.  Even worse, that wouldn't work cause I 
can't distinguish this server from a unix server.

Another option is to explicitly pass the FQCN for my new parser into 
DefaultFTPFileEntryParserFactory, but there I'm stymied because, AFAICT, 
there is no way to pass the FQCN through the vfs layer to the net layer.

I keep hoping that I'm just missing something in the API that lets me tell VFS 
what I really want to do at the net layer.  I need to be able to set the FQCN 
for the FTPFileEntryParser to use on a given connection.

Does anyone have any suggestions for how to proceed?  I'm not opposed to 
changing the vfs or net code if you think the changes would be accepted back 
into CVS.


Michael Hirsch

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