Rapidshare is very well known for its extensive database of files that are being shared. There are tons of better file sharing services out there than Rapidshare, but I think the only reason it is staying alive is because of the extreme amounts of cracks, warez, movies, and all sorts of other illegal items being hosted on the service.
One thing that Rapidshare has always stayed clear of is implementing a search engine so that people can easily find files that have already been uploaded. There are a few sites that have tried to implement their own Rapidshare search engine, such as Rapidshare-Search-Engine, and they have all been a little unsuccessful. What I’ve resulted to in the past is doing Google searches in this format:
The portion before the parenthesis is the program, movie, or name of what you’re looking for on Rapidshare. The two items in the parenthesis tell Google to look for sites that are linking to Rapidshare files. This type of searching has also come in handy when I’ve been looking for older versions of applications that are no longer available.
A new site, called Rapidshare1, has been created to crawl the web looking for all of the Rapidshare links that are being posted. It then aggregates them into a central database so that you can easily search for the files that you want. Is it successful? I wasn’t all that impressed with the results it returned for some of the common searches I did. A search for Excel pulled in results for all kinds of off-the-wall items, which led me to believe that their database is still extremely limited. I think I’ll be sticking with Google for my Rapidshare searches.
Note: We’re not condoning piracy, it’s just a well known fact that Rapidshare is the home to thousands of illegal downloads.