FileZilla is typically used for uploading / downloading files between the server and your local computer, but can also be used for editing files. In this tutorial we will show you how to modify a file using the FileZilla FTP client. 

FileZilla is a free open-sourced FTP client that can be downloaded here:

Filezilla client download

Edit in FileZilla:

  1. Connect to your account using FileZilla.
  2. On the top Remote Site window, click the folder that contains the file you want to edit. Its contents will be listed in the window below.
    selecting a file for editing in filezilla
  3. On the bottom window of the remote sites, right-click the file you want to modify, and click View/Edit. The File will open in notepad on Windows, or TextEditor on a Mac.
    Editing the file in FileZilla
  4. After editing the file, save then close it. You will see a File has changed message, and it will ask "Upload this file back to the server?" Click the Yes button to upload the file you edited.
    saving changed file in filezilla


Download a File and Modify, then Re-upload:

  1.  Click the file you want to edit, then drag and drop it onto your desktop.
    dragging file from filezilla and dropping on desktop
    For Windows: you can right-click the file on your desktop, then click Open with --> Choose default program... --> (Double click) Other Programs --> Notepad

    For Mac: Ctrl + click the file --> Open With --> TextEditor

  2. Save your file after editing, then drag and drop back into the bottom remote directory window. You will see a message stating the "Target file already exists," overwrite the existing file to replace it with your updated version.
    Replacing uploaded files in FileZilla


Congratulations, now you know how to edit a file using your FileZilla FTP client!


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n/a Points
2016-05-17 11:42 pm

I am not able to see right click option for editing.I am using MAC but after right clicking on the file nothing is coming

16,138 Points
2016-05-18 1:42 pm
Hello Pinkle,

Sorry for the problem with editing. If you're using a Mac, you should be able to replace the right-click by using CTRL-Click.

If you have any further questions or comments, please let us know.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2017-07-04 8:18 am

I have followed the steps and it has been successful but it hasn't made the changes to my site? How do I get these changes to sycn to my website?

16,138 Points
2017-07-05 3:18 pm
Hello Adele,

If you made changes to the files for the website and you're not seeing them, then it's possible that you need to clear the cache for your browser. Once the browser cache is cleared then you should be able to see the changes to your site.

If you have any further questions or comments, please let us know.

Arnel C.
n/a Points
2017-10-06 10:46 am

Hello, I am still having trouble seeing the update on the site even when I clear out the cache. However, if on the FTP I click the file it loads correctly on the remote end but not live site end. What can I do?


Thank you!

170 Points
2017-10-06 2:36 pm
Hello, Angelica. You should check to make sure that you are uploading the files to the correct directory for your website and that your website's domain is pointed to the correct server. I hope this helps!
n/a Points
2017-07-25 4:53 am

i've edit the file but when i want to ovewrite, command box pop-up and said that the file transfer are unsuccessfull. 

901 Points
2017-07-25 9:10 am
Did Filezilla prompt you with a message requesting permission to overwrite the file? If not, then that may have been why the file transfer was unsuccessful.

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