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What is SFTP and How do I Connect?

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This page covers the specifics of our Manual SFTP Import data integration process, including frequently asked questions about how you can connect your data to the Panorama server. This page is not applicable to nightly student information system data files.

Student Success and Enhanced SEL empower school districts to use your existing data to better support your students. This requires integrating data from your current systems into Panorama. You can view a full list of Supported Systems and access methods we have available. If you have questions further about this information, please reach out to your project team, as they will be able to discuss what is best for your specific needs.

What is SFTP and How does Panorama use SFTP?

SFTP stands for secure file transfer protocol (SFTP). This is an access method that sets up nightly exports from your information systems to Panorama’s SFTP folders, which are then pulled into your Panorama Platform.

With SFTP Import, you or your tech team can manually upload administration files to Panorama’s SFTP folders.

Connecting to Panorama with SFTP clientFor manual uploads, you will want to use a separate SFTP client to upload the files. SFTP Clients that we recommend include:

How to set-up SFTP:

A username and password will be provided by your Panorama project team. Once this is received, you can use the SFTP Client of your choice to connect to the Panorama server. We can use FileZilla as an example below:
  1. Open up the SFTP Client and select the site manager, this should be located on the top left of the window. 

  2. Next, click the "New site" button.

  3. After you click “New site”, enter your username and password and click the “Connect” button. Your username and password will have been provided to you by Panorama. You can refer to the Frequently Asked Questions below on where to find your username and password.

  4. Once you hit “Connect”, you will see a home directory (As shown in the image below). You will create a new directory, by right clicking on the folder. Your Student Information System (SIS) and Assessment files will be uploaded to the new directory you are creating.

  5. Create your directory and year scoped folders for your SIS files by right clicking on the folder and selecting “Create directory”.

    1. SIS files should be placed in year scoped folders for which you have data for and would like to see within the Panorama Platform. You can refer to the Frequently Asked Questions below for more information on how to create a new folder in SFTP for each school year.
    2. Assessment files should live in a separate folder from your SIS data. Assessment files should be placed in year scoped folders with the below naming convention. For example, If you have SAT files for the 21-22 school year you can title this directory as /assessments/2021-2022/SAT (You can refer to the image in step 6 for an example on how your directory should look once these folders are created). 

  6. Once you click OK, your directory and year scoped folders will be available for you to upload your data files:

Once your files have been manually imported into the SFTP server, you can reach out to your Panorama project team member to let them know your data files are ready. Your Project team will be able to inform you on a timeline as to when your SIS and Assessment data will be available to view in the Panorama Platform. 

Your Panorama project team can provide specific details about secure methods of sending the information to our servers, however you can get ahead by reading more about various systems and methods of data integration we support in this article.

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I create a new folder in SFTP for each school year?

You can create a new folder for each school year by right clicking on the folder in your directory. Then, title your new folder with the school year you are looking to add.

Once you select “OK” the folder will be ready for you to add your data files. The files should be added to the year scoped folder that you have now created. 

Can I connect to SFTP through a web browser?

For manual uploads, you will want to use a separate SFTP client rather than a web browser to upload the files. SFTP Clients that we recommend include:

How do I find my username and password?

Your username and password will be provided to you by Panorama:

  • Your username can be found in a credentials document that your project team will provide. 
  • Your password will be sent to the email address provided by you or your technical team and can be found in your inbox. 
I’m running into the following error message: “connection timed out after 20 seconds of inactivity…” How do I get around this?

We’ve found that the issue there is usually with an out going firewall. Ensure that your district does not have an outgoing firewall. As a next step, you may need to allowlist our IP address:

I’m trying to use the “Quickconnect” option and it’s not working. Any other suggestions?

Quickconnect will not allow you to enter the directory. Instead you will need to add in your login credentials using the Site Manager instead. 

Do I need to work with my SIS company/vendor to set this up?

Most SIS’s allow district SIS administrators to set-up these exports on their own. Panorama does have ample experience working with SIS vendors, and is happy to work with yours in the rare instance where an SIS vendor needs to enable exports for you.

What if something goes wrong or doesn’t work?

Our technical support team reviews all exports, and will provide help if you run into any roadblocks.

Is this secure?

Yes. Panorama takes data security & privacy very seriously. SFTP ( Secure File Transfer Protocol) is fully encrypted, meaning that your data will stay secured when exported.

Additional Resources:

You can learn more about the process for data integration into Student Success in the below Panorama Articles:

  1. Integrating Data into Student Success
  2. Supported Systems and Methods of Data Integration
  3. Preparing Your Technology for Student Success

Student Success

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