One of my friends asked me recently if I knew of any way he could share a file with some friends that was over 8GB in size (it was a ZIP of over a thousand photos). Distributing really large files like that can often be a huge pain. All of the normal alternatives aren’t really available, such as attaching to an email or some other sites that actually host the files for you. They all tend to have limitations that you can quickly hit.
I started looking around at some of the peer-to-peer file sharing sites that are available, such as iSendr, JetBytes, Files Over Miles, and many others. I really liked JetBytes, but the connection speed didn’t seem to be all that great. The other issue was that most of the alternatives all used Adobe Flash, which may not seem like a downside at first but it imposes a pretty big limitation. For the most part any site using Flash to distribute the files will limit your upload size because Flash requires that the file is stored in memory. If you’re trying to share a file that is 8GB in size you can see how someone might run into an issue.
FileAI.com is different. It uses Java (which, for the record, I normally despise) to share the files between you and anyone else you give the URL to. I had no problems sharing extremely large files with several of my friends, and the interface (pictured above) keeps me informed as to what IP addresses are actually downloading the file from me. Plus, there are several other benefits to using FileAI:
- Share an entire folder of files without needing to compress them first.
- Add a password to transfers to better restrict who can download your files.
- Limit the number of transfers.
- Similar to the BitTorrent Protocol, when someone is sending the same files to multiple people, they are able to transfer directly with one another, resulting in faster download speeds for the downloaders, and reduced upload bandwith usage for the uploader.
- Incomplete transfers can be resumed from the point where they left off.
- All file data is encrypted with 128-bit AES encryption when it is transferred, and no file data is stored on any server.
I didn’t know that web-based file transfer utilities had ever become this nice. I’d like an option for the host to pause files that were being transferred, but that is just a very minor thing that I probably wouldn’t even use that often.