WebDAV How-To Access

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WebDAV is essentially a collaborative way for users to edit and manage files on a remote web server. From WebDAV on Wikipedia:

Web Distributed Authoring and Versioning (WebDAV) is an extension of the Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) that allows clients to perform remote Web content authoring operations.

This guide describes the required steps to connect to a WebDAV directory.

Login credentials

You must have the following three basic pieces of information in order to connect:

  1. The WebDAV site URL – This is the URL you will be connecting to. This information can be obtained in the web panel under (Panel > ‘Goodies’ > ‘Htaccess/WebDAV’).
    • The DreamHost control panel requires WebDAV to be set up on a real subfolder of the root of a domain (not in the root of a domain). This can be worked around via manual configuration.
  2. The WebDAV account username and password
  3. A nickname for the connection/shortcut – This is to remind you of the site you are connecting to.

Connecting with Windows

Connecting to your WebDAV directory can be accomplished through Microsoft’s Windows Explorer. This mounts the WebDAV folder as a mapped drive and allows you to view, edit, and delete files from the remote web server from your computer.

Windows 7

  1. Click the Start button.
    01 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  2. Select 'Computer'.
    02 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  3. Click Map network drive.
    03 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
    • From this point on, the steps are the same for Windows 8.
  4. View those instructions below (starting at step #4) to connect to WebDAV.

Windows 8

  1. Open Windows File Explorer.
    In Windows 8, My Computer is named 'This PC':
    04 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  2. Right click 'This PC'.
  3. From the dropdown, select 'Map network drive...'
    05 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  4. Enter the following:
    • Drive: Select the drive letter you want to map your WebDAV connection to.
    • Folder: This is the folder on your local computer where you'll add/edit WebDAV files.
  5. Check the boxes:
    • Reconnect at sign-in – This allows the connection to your WebDAV to be restored if you restart your computer.
    • Connect using different credentials
  6. Click the 'Connect to a Web site that you can use to store your documents and pictures' link.
    06 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  7. Click the Next button.
    07 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  8. Click Choose a custom network location and then click the Next button.
    08 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  9. In the 'Internet or network address' field, enter your domain's URL with the WebDAV directory at the end of it.
    09 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  10. Enter your WebDAV username and password in the popup box, and then the OK button.
    The box titled 'Type a name for this network location' is already populated, and you can change this if you like:
    10 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  11. Click the Next button.
    11 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  12. Click the Finish button.

Your WebDAV folder appears as a mapped drive in Windows Explorer, and you can immediately add, edit, or delete files and directories using the Windows File Explorer.

Windows troubleshooting

If you still have trouble connecting to your WebDAV directory, you may have to update the Basic Authentication Level in the registry. View the following page for further information on how to access the registry:

To change the Basic Authentication Level:

  1. Locate the following directory:
  2. Locate value BasicAuthLevel.
    • The Value data box should be set to 2.
  3. If the value is not 2, right click it and then select 'Modify'.
  4. Change it to 2.

Connecting with Mac OS X Finder

  1. Look for the dock images at the bottom of the screen.
    12 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  2. Click the 'Finder' icon with the smiley face on your dock.
  3. In 'Finder', locate the menu bar at the top and then navigate to Go > Connect to Server.
    13 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  4. In the 'Connect to Server' dialog box, enter the URL to your WebDAV directory in the 'Server Address' field.
  5. Click Connect.
    • Once the connection is made, you are prompted for your WebDAV username/password.
    • Once you’ve connected, the WebDAV directory is mounted in your 'Finder' and on your desktop.

You can now start adding, editing, deleting files in this directory from the comfort of your computer.

Connecting with Ubuntu

  1. Go to the desktop.
    14 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  2. On the top menu bar, click File > Connect to Server.
    The Connect to Server dialog box opens:
    15 WebDAV how to access.fw.png
  3. Enter the following:
    • Server: URL of your domain only. Do not enter the http:// part. For example, if your URL is http://example.com, just enter example.com or www.example.com if you force the www subdomain.
    • Port: This can be left alone since choosing the connection type auto-fills this section. Default is port 80 just in case.
    • Type: Select WebDAV as the connection type.
    • Folder: The name of the WebDAV directory you set up on your computer.
    • User name: WebDAV username.
    • Password: WebDAV username password.

Alternative WebDAV client software

You can use alternative clients which have additional features including:

  • local caching – to avoid round trips to the server, which may be slow for you or expensive for the server
  • offline access – for work while you are disconnected
  • versioning – custom permissions, or other features your WebDAV server may offer only through a more advanced client

Alternate (and sometimes non-free) clients include:

See also