I’ve got a podcast that will be 10 years old this coming January! Most of those episodes have one or more guests (plus me and Dave). Despite fancy modern options for recording podcasts with guests, like Riverside.fm or Zencastr where guests don’t have to worry about recording their own audio, we haven’t made the leap to one of those yet.
We have the guests record their own audio locally (typically Quicktime Player or Windows Voice Recorder) because that way our editor can make the most of the editing process. At the end of the show, our guest has a file that is ~100MB that they need to send over to us.
How that handoff happens isn’t always completely obvious. Typically we don’t share a Slack with our guests, but when we do, that works for sharing large files like that. Even a Nitro-boosted Discord won’t take a file that big, though. I’d say 70% of the time, our guests chuck the file into their Dropbox and create a sharing link for us to download it. From there, it’s probably Google Drive 20% of the time, and the last 10% is some random thing.
That last 10% is stuff like uploading the file to a web server or file storage service the guest controls and they link us up to the file from there. If we were smarter, we’d probably use “File Request” links on Dropbox or Box.
I usually say something like,
Send us that file however you like to send large files, because I don’t want to be too prescriptive about what service someone uses. You never know if someone has a particular aversion to some specific tech or company. I would always mention Firefox Send because it was meant for one-off file sending and I find people generally like and trust Mozilla. Alas, Firefox Send shut down.
Unfortunately, some abusive users were beginning to use Firefox Send to ship malware and conduct phishing attacks. When this problem was reported, we stopped the service. Please see the Mozilla Blog for more details on why this service was discontinued.
I guess it’s responsible to try to shut down bad behavior, but of course it was used for bad behavior. Dickwads use any and every service on the entire internet for bad behavior. The real answer, probably, is that it was just a little random side project that didn’t make any money and they didn’t feel like investing the time and money into fixing it. Fair enough, but of course that always costs you trust points. What else is on the chopping block?
I ran across Wormhole the other day which looks like a direct, if not better, replacement. It uses end-to-end encrypted and has some nice UX touches, like getting a share link before the upload is complete. It doesn’t say anything about how they intend to pay for it and support it long-term, but I’d guess the cost is somewhat minimal as they only host the files for 24 hours. They also don’t say if they intend to prevent bad behavior or if it’s just a free-for-all. Even with all the encryption and whatnot, I would imagine if a site like Google or Twitter found that tons of
wormhole.app URLs had malware on them, they’d be blacklisted. That wouldn’t stop people from using it but it certainly stops people from finding it too. I did hear from Feross on this, and they have ideas to fight bad behavior if it comes to that.
The thing I’m the most surprised by is that we don’t get more emails where the email service itself just hosts the file. That might sound silly, as email is notorious for not accepting very large file attachments, but that has changed over the years with some of the big players. When you select a file that’s larger than 25MB in Gmail, it’ll offer to upload it to Google Drive and automatically share it with the person you’re sending the email to. iCloud does largely the same thing with Mail Drop.
Me, I use Dropbox quite a bit, but rarely for sharing one-off files. If I want to make sure I have a copy in perpetuity, sometimes I’ll even use a personal Amazon S3 bucket. But mostly I’ll just upload it to Droplr, which I’ve used for ages just for this kind of thing.
Resilio Sync can send individual files as well and it works great. https://www.resilio.com/individuals/
Surprised WeTransfer didn’t make the list. Seems to be what everyone over here uses.
Yup, that’s also my favourite. It’s fast, reliable and has a great UX.
It’s the go-to option at my company and nearly every other company I’ve worked for or with over the years.
A secure, end-to-end encrypted service similar to Firefox Send is called Tresorit.
It seems fairly consistent with Firefox Send in most ways and the encryption makes it more trustworthy.
I know you mentioned Dropbox, but I’ve found Dropbox Transfer to be handy too. It’s nice that neither person needs a Dropbox account to use it.
Torrents are always available too. Instant.io is a great way to upload files and it provides both a
magnet:link and a
.torrentfile. JSTorrent can be used to download these things, even to a chromebook since it’s just a chrome extension.
Hey.com has this feature
What about blackhole.run
Why not write your own? That way your clients all have one synchronized way to send files.
Another one I’ve seen is MASV
No file size limits
7 days file storage
Also encrypts the files during transit (SSL/TLS) and storage (AES-256)
No one cited MEGA. I already worked with it and, IMHO, end-to-end encryption in browser is a bit misleading, as you need to trust their server to provide code that will no leak no secret data.
IIRC that’s why Signal doesn’t provide a web client like other chat applications, as a web client needs to trust the server so is not compatible with that E2E is meant for. Well, you still need to trust the code, but it’s easier to be audited and trusted than a website that can change its code anytime. Put a “if user is a list of targeted people: add code that leak private keys” conditional (in server, not client-side JS) and hardly one will notice as almost everyone will not get this code.
I often use the MEGA client I maintain to be safe, but I would not say it’s 100% safe: some libraries it depend on, like request, are not maintained anymore and need to be replaced soon. Still, I trust it more than the website. I hope more services have open-source clients (even if those aren’t official ones).
Well, anyway, at least those services that provide E2E in browser are doing better than traditional file sharing services.
Telegram, in addition to being a really nice messaging app, allows you to send files up to 2GB without any expiration dates.
Unfortunately, both sender and recipient must have an account* but in some countries, chances are it’s already the case.
*Unless you do some Channel shenanigans where you can “preview” a channel in your browser without logging in
Try http://www.mailbigfile.com – does what it says on the tin.
I use and recommend https://wetransfer.com
2GB limit, automatic expiring after 7 days.