Query SFTP Data in ColdFusion

Ready to get started?

Download for a free trial:

Download Now

Learn more:

SFTP JDBC Driver

An easy-to-use database-like interface for Java based applications and reporting tools access to remote files and directories.



Write standard ColdFusion data access code to connect to SFTP data.

The CData JDBC Driver for SFTP seamlessly integrates connectivity to SFTP data with the rapid development tools in ColdFusion. This article shows how to connect to SFTP data in ColdFusion and query SFTP tables.

Create a JDBC Data Source for SFTP in ColdFusion

The JDBC data source enables you to execute SQL from standard ColdFusion tags like cfquery and CFScript like executeQuery.

  1. Copy the driver JAR and .lic file from the installation directory onto the ColdFusion classpath. For example, copy the files into C:\MyColdFusionDirectory\cfusion\wwwroot\WEB-INF\lib. Or, open the Java and JVM page in the ColdFusion Administrator and enter the path to the files in the ColdFusion Class Path box.

    The JAR and license for the driver are located in the lib subfolder of the installation directory.

    Restart the server after this step.

  2. Add the driver as a data source:

    From the ColdFusion administrator interface, expand the Data & Services node and click Data Sources. In the Add New Data Source section, enter a name for the data source and select Other in the Driver menu.

  3. Populate the driver properties:

    • JDBC URL: Enter connection properties in the JDBC URL. The JDBC URL begins with jdbc:sftp: and is followed by the connection properties in a semicolon-separated list of name=value pairs.

      SFTP can be used to transfer files to and from SFTP servers using the SFTP Protocol. To connect, specify the RemoteHost;. service uses the User and Password and public key authentication (SSHClientCert). Choose an SSHAuthMode and specify connection values based on your selection.

      Set the following connection properties to control the relational view of the file system:

      • RemotePath: Set this to the current working directory.
      • TableDepth: Set this to control the depth of subfolders to report as views.
      • FileRetrievalDepth: Set this to retrieve files recursively and list them in the Root table.
      Stored Procedures are available to download files, upload files, and send protocol commands. See gdatamodel for more on using SQL to interact with the server.

      Built-in Connection String Designer

      For assistance in constructing the JDBC URL, use the connection string designer built into the SFTP JDBC Driver. Either double-click the JAR file or execute the jar file from the command-line.

      java -jar cdata.jdbc.sftp.jar

      Fill in the connection properties and copy the connection string to the clipboard.

      A typical JDBC URL is below:

      jdbc:sftp:RemoteHost=MyFTPServer;
    • Driver Class: Enter the driver class. The driver class is cdata.jdbc.sftp.SFTPDriver.
    • Driver Name: Enter a user-defined name for the driver.
    • Username: Enter the username used to authenticate.
    • Password: Enter the password used to authenticate.

You can now test the connection by enabling the CData SFTP data source in the Actions column. After reporting a status of OK, the SFTP data source is ready for use.

Execute Queries

The cfquery tag can pass SQL statements to SFTP, including INSERT, UPDATE, and DELETE.. Use the cfqueryparam tag to create parameterized queries and prevent SQL injection through the query string.

<cfquery name="SFTPQuery" dataSource="CDataSFTP"> SELECT * FROM MyDirectory WHERE FilePath = <cfqueryparam value="#FilePath#" cfsqltype="cf_sql_varchar"> </cfquery> <cfdump var="#SFTPQuery#">

Below is the equivalent in CFScript:


<cfscript>
result = queryExecute(
  "SELECT * FROM MyDirectory WHERE FilePath = ?", 
  [
    { value="/documents/doc.txt", cfsqltype="cf_sql_varchar" }
  ],
  { datasource="CDataSFTP" }
);

writeDump( var= result );
</cfscript> 

You can then make requests to your .cfm like the following:

http://MyServer:8500/query.cfm?FilePath=/documents/doc.txt