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File Sharing

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Note: Many topics at this site are reduced versions of the text in "The Encyclopedia of Networking and Telecommunications." Search results will not be as extensive as a search of the book's CD-ROM.

File sharing has several meanings. When you put a file on a disk and give the disk to a friend, you are "file sharing." When you transfer a file via electronic mail, you are "file sharing." This topic is about "peer-to-peer file sharing," which refers to the ability of users to make files on their computers accessible to other users. It discusses Web-based file storage and community- based peer-to-peer information exchange over the Web. A related topic called "File Transfer Protocols" discusses the protocols used to transfer files.

This topic continues in "The Encyclopedia of Networking and Telecommunications" with a discussion of the following:

  • Enterprise File sharing
  • File and folder sharing in operating environments such as Microsoft Windows
  • File sharing security
  • File sharing problems with "always-on" Internet connections.
  • Internet file-sharing services
  • FTP (file transfer protocol)
  • click2send, a basic "deposit a file" and "pick up a file" service
  • "Virtual collaboration workspace" services
  • Internet distributed file sharing
  • The "community-based" file sharing approach
  • Peer-to-peer file sharing services
  • Napster and similar services

Following is a partial list of Internet file-sharing services, some of which offer 50MB or more of free disk space. For additional information about online storage sites, visit Brian A. Berg's Storage Cornucopia Web site at


Critical Path Secure file services




Punch WebGroups File Collaboration Service

Skydesk (a Qualcomm-funded site)

vVault (caters to PDAs, WAP phones, and other wireless devices)

X:drive (100MB free)

Below is a list of Internet file-sharing services and products. All can be used to share audio and video media in a community-based exchange arrangement.


Gnutella Web page

Another Gnutella Web page

Gnutella downloads, links, and articles

Napster and OpenNap (open source Napster server)

The Free Network Project, home of Freenet

Yo!NK File Download Community



Jungle Monkey (University of Michigan)

According to the Yo!NK community Web site, "Each member of the community shares a folder that receives new downloads and stores media that you would like others to download from you. You help define the community by the amount and type of files you have available. Your searches are broadcasted to the entire community, each Yo!NK member that matches your request will show you the files you want to download."

Copyright (c) 2001 Tom Sheldon and Big Sur Multimedia.
All rights reserved under Pan American and International copyright conventions.