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Adobe Summit 2023 [19th to 23rd March, Las Vegas and Virtual] | Complete AEM Session & Lab list

Submit PDF files to an FTP site


Not applicable
I've seen lots of talk and confusion on this forum about how to submit data and/or files. I have what I thought was a fairly simple issue, but have been battling it for over a week -- please help!

I've created the desired fillable PDF form and added a Submit button. When the user clicks the Submit button, I'd like for a copy of the filled PDF file to be placed on/saved to the FTP server. I've got the format of the URL ( in the URL field, but when the user clicks submit, IE opens the folder on the FTP server rather than submitting the file.

A - Is what I want to do even possible for users who my only have Adobe Reader?

B - If this is possible, then what am I doing wrong?

7 Replies


Not applicable
You can't do this. The submit happens over HTTP, not FTP. If you specify a URL to an FTP site IE will open the site, but it has no idea that it needs to send commands after that to actual start the transfer. You'd have to submit via HTTP to a server side component (ie: servlet or something like that) and write code to transfer the file to the FTP site.

Also, if you're submitting the whole PDF, and not just the data then it won't work for users who just have Reader.


Adobe Enterprise Developer Support


Not applicable
Here's an excerpt from Adobe LiveCycle Designer Help:

In the Object palette, click the Submit tab. Select one of these formats from the Submit Format list:

* XML Data Package (XDP)


* XML Data (XML)

* URL-Encoded Data (HTTP Post)

So there must be a way to submit PDF files to a server. What do I need on the server side to be able to accept PDF files sent to a URL via the Submit mechanism and have them ? I don't need blow-by-blow instructions; if you please point me in the right direction I'd appreciate it.

ps - I hope Adobe recognizes from the volume of questions similar to mine on this forum that not only is the product literature for Adobe Professional 7.0 misleading regarding the ability and relative ease of submitting PDF data/files, but the product documentation is woefully inadequate and confusing. To say that this product doesn't live up to the user's expectations would be a gross understatement. Don't get me wrong, I'm a C++/Assembler developer with 25 years of experience. I'll get this to work no matter what it takes. However, I pity any non-software developers who purchased Adobe Professional 7.0 thinking that they'd be able to easily create and distribute user-fillable forms that are universally functional for all users.


Not applicable
You will need to use a CGI/perl script to do this work on the server end. You can post the data via HTTP to a URL but in the end you need to be able to recieve, save the data as the correct file type to a file system on the server or a location specified by the CGI/perl script to another location. Note, that there are inherent risks in allowing writing and saving to any location on any kind of machine.



Not applicable

I agree that this seems like it should be simple. I can save files on the server based information passed to a page, but my confusion is how the information comes in when I select "pdf"? I don't see any form and url scoped variables to work with....


Level 1

Anyone has the answer for this? Were you able to submit PDF form to FTP site? 

Can we run javascript code on the submit action properties to send the form to authenticated ftp site?


Level 1

Did you got an answer to this thread? I am facing the exact same problematic. Need to deliver a PDF and allow end user (external from the company) to simply fill it out, press the submit button and me to receive the file back to a location in a specific flat file format or PDF or excel, etc....

Thank you so much for your help.



It was not possible in 2006 and it is still not possible to submit directly to an ftp server. And having username/password in a URL on the form is a security problem you should NOT put into it.

You can only do this indirectly. Have a URL on a webserver which takes the PDF and then run some code on the server to put the file where you need it.