• ARTICLES
SEARCH

How-To Geek

The Best Free Programs and Online Services for Sending and Sharing Large Files

00_lead_image

Last week, we published a list of websites for sharing photos with friends and family. Of course, you can also share your photos by emailing them, but many email services impose a limit on the size of files you can send.

TyphoonUpload

TyphoonUpload allows you to quickly and easily send files to co-workers, friends, and family without the hassle of email attachments or the burden of FTP. Manage email addresses and receive confirmation emails when your files are successfully delivered. TyphoonUpload features full Windows integration and the Express Send option allows users to send files in just a few clicks.

The free account allows you to send any files up to 2GB in size. Other paid plans are available that allow you to send bigger files.

typhoon_upload

Securely Send

Securely Send allows anyone to send large files safely. Sending files is as easy as entering the email address to whom you would like to send files, attaching the files that you would like to send, and clicking “Send It.” Securely Send takes the hard work out of sending large files. You can be confident that your files have been received.

A free account allows you three sends per month and the maximum file size you can send is 200MB. There are Basic, Standard, and Premium paid plans that allow you to send more per month and raise the maximum file size allowed.

securely_send

BITzen

BITzen is an online service that allows you to receive files from and send files to others quickly, securely, and reliably in any format. The service is aimed at companies that need to send files to and receive files from clients or collaborators, but it can also be used by others for personal purposes. You don’t have to install any software to use this service and you will be able to use their service free service almost instantly after registering for their free plan.

The free account provides 1GB of storage space, a monthly transfer limit of 2GB, and a maximum file size of 2GB. There are three paid plans also available for users.

bitzen

Kicksend

Most of your relatives aren’t on social networks, and shared folders are too complicated for what they actually want to do: look at your photos. Kicksend was designed just for them. They’ve made it simple enough for Mom and Dad to use without tech support or training.

You can also order beautiful, high-quality prints for yourself and loved ones on Kicksend quickly and easily. You choose the prints, they choose the store (CVS, Target, or Walgreens). From your phone to their hands in one hour. Memories ready to be framed and cherished forever.

Kicksend helps you free your email inbox and everyone else’s. All your pictures are stored securely on Kicksend, so you can view and download them privately from any device, anywhere, anytime.

kicksend

YouSendIt

With millions of registered users in 193 countries and 98 percent of the Fortune 500, YouSendIt is the go-to file collaboration service for both consumers and enterprise. The company‘s online services span from simple file sharing to complete collaboration services that allow users to securely share, sign and access content from any mobile device or PC.

The free Lite plan offers 2 GB of storage, five E-Signatures, and a maximum file size of 50 MB. If you need more storage space, a larger maximum file size, or more features, there are additional paid plans available.

yousendit

YouSendIt also integrates with Microsoft Outlook, making sending large files and folders (up to 100MB) as quick as sending an all-text email with no extra steps required. We’ve written about how to use the YouSendIt Outlook add-on.

yousendit_outlook_addon

WeTransfer

WeTransfer is a free platform for transferring large digital files up to 2GB per transfer. They can transfer any type of file – such as presentations, photos, videos, music, documents and more. There is no registration and the files are available for two weeks.

They are supported by advertisements displayed as wallpaper on the WeTransfer site. They also sell WeTransfer Channels that allow you to have your own wallpapers, no ads, your unique WeTransfer URL, personal background in emails, and the files are available for a month, rather than for two weeks.

wetransfer

TransferBigFiles

TransferBigFiles makes it very easy to send and share large files that are generally too big to email. It does this by allowing you to upload your file to our servers and it sends a link to a page where the file can then be retrieved by your recipient (or yourself if you are the recipient).

You can use the site for free without registering. The free account allows you to send files that are as big as 100MB, whereas most email systems max out at 10MB to 25MB. Files are kept for five days with the free account.

Premium, paid accounts are available if you want the benefit of the added features, like the personal drop box, transfer history, larger size limit, higher download limit, storage space and much more.

transferbigfiles

TitanFile

TitanFile allows you to drag and drop files from various sources, and share them securely with your colleagues or clients on the go, using any device at any time and any place.

Organize your information around people and common context instead of around files and folders, making it easier and more intuitive to find your files.

TitanFile transfers your files over a secure connection and stores them encrypted in a secure facility.

Their free Basic plan is good for basic use and supports uploading files of up to 100MB. You also get seven days of an audit trail and five communication channels. There are also paid Professional and Enterprise plans, if you need more features.

titanfile

MailBigFile

MailBigFile allows you to send large files when you can’t through regular email. It’s web-based, so there’s no software to download, and it’s easy to use. The free service allows you to upload files with a maximum size of 300MB per file. The files are available for 10 days. You can have one recipient per file and each file can be downloaded up to 20 times. There is no permanent storage with the free service.

There are additional paid plans if you need higher limits and more features.

mailbigfile

Pando

Pando is a free file sharing software that makes downloading, streaming and sharing large files and folders (up to 1GB) fast and easy, using a managed Peer-to-Peer (P2P) technology that they designed. It allows you to send large files and folders using any email and no registration is required. Pando bypasses email attachment limits with small .pando attachments and never clogs your inbox.

You can also share directly to IM, Facebook, or Twitter and post downloadable videos and photos by embedding Pando Packages on any website, including MySpace, Facebook, Blogger, WordPress, Typepad, Xanga and LiveJournal.

Share files and folders (up to 1GB) with others using any IM client, such as Google Talk and Skype. Simply create a Pando link, paste it into an IM and get offline. Your recipient just clicks the link to get what you sent.

pando

SendThisFile

SendThisFile is a robust file transfer service that harnesses the power of the Internet to modernize and simplify sending and receiving large files. It provides you with simple and fast file transfers, keeping complexity at bay with our easy to use file upload pages where you can monitor your progress. All transfers include SendThisFile’s comprehensive encryption and security, creating end-to-end 128-bit encrypted file transfers without having to configure a single setting.

The free account allows you to send files with a maximum size of 2GB to one recipient at a time. The files are available to download for three days, and the transfers are secure, using 128-bit SSL. You can also use their FileBox to get photos from your friends and family.

They also have paid accounts that provide higher limits and additional features.

sendthisfile

Files to Friends

Files to Friends is a very simple website that allows you to send up to 2GB to friends and family in three steps, without the need to register.

files_to_friends

JustBeamIt

JustBeamIt is a beta service that makes transferring files very easy. Simply drag your files into the drop zone, which is the area under the header with the parachute. You can also select your files by clicking on the parachute. Then, click the Create Link button to generate a unique download link to share with the recipient of your files. Once the file is uploaded, a “waiting” indicator displays, until the recipient connects to the page and downloads the file.

The only drawback of this method is that you, as the sender, cannot leave the page until the download is complete. Once you and your recipient both leave the page, the transfer link becomes useless. If the recipient encounters a problem with the file, you’ll have to start the process over again.

justbeamit

The next two items are not specifically for sharing photos, but we thought they would be useful. One item is a website that allows you to share large amounts of text and the other is a free tool that allows you to split large files to make them easier to email or share.

Pastebin

Pastebin is a free web service wherein you can paste text to share with your friends, family, or even your colleagues, and keep it there for a certain period of time. Also, you can choose for how long the particular post should remain, because after the specified time period that post automatically gets deleted.

You can also choose to keep your paste public or private. The private pastings are visible only to the people you choose to share your links with. This can all be done for free, without a need to download or install any software.

They also offer a program called Pastebin Desktop, which allows you to take full advantage of your Pastebin.com account directly from your desktop. The program puts an icon in your system tray that lets you access the full application.

pastebin

GSplit

GSplit is a free reliable file splitter program for Windows that lets you split your large files (bigger than 4GB), such as self-extracting archives, Zip archives, disk images, photos, music, video, and backup files, into a set of smaller files called pieces. These pieces are easier to send by email (forget attached file size restrictions imposed by some ISP, pop3, SMTP and other e-mail servers) and upload to host accounts, file delivery services, and online file hosting sites that have restrictions on file sizes, and share with friends, colleagues or other users through networks and the Internet.

You can choose to split files in one of two ways: disk spanned (split into a set of files varying in size auto-calculated by GSplit based on available free disk space and saved immediately to spannable removable disks) or blocked (split into a set of same sized split files).

The files pieces can also be made self-uniting. To do this, GSplit creates a small stand-alone executable file that will put all of the pieces back together. This executable provides your users with an intuitive Windows interface whose appearance can be customized according to your needs. Thus, GSplit is not required in order to restore the split file.

You can also store file properties like file dates and attributes, and restore them. GSplit also provides the ability to perform fast checks (size, offset, CRC32) in order to detect file corruption and to give you the assurance that your files are successfully restored by your users. When a piece is corrupted, you are notified about it, so you just need to get a new copy of that piece, not the whole set.

A portable edition of GSplit is also available with no required installation. Run the portable file splitter directly from any removable disk like a USB flash drive. Settings are also saved directly on the storage media, not on the computer.

gsplit_orig

Other options How-To Geek has previously covered for sharing large files include:

If you have found any other useful websites or tools that allow you to send or share large files, let us know.

Lori Kaufman is a freelance technical writer who likes to write geeky how-to articles to help make people's lives easier through the use of technology. She loves watching and reading mysteries and is an avid Doctor Who fan.

  • Published 01/12/13

Comments (20)

  1. EKMA

    Why is it that the sites that have “big” in their name are also the sites that have the smallest file uploads? Is that supposed to be an oxymoron?

  2. RA

    I use SkyDrive, Outlook.com automatically uses it for big files.

  3. Alex Thorp

    I use HFS http://www.rejetto.com/hfs/
    If your internet is a decent speed, it works great. I have a port forwarding setup to my laptop, and just send the url to whomever I need to transfer the file to.
    I also added a shortcut in my Send to menu(http://www.howtogeek.com/howto/windows-vista/customize-the-windows-vista-send-to-menu/), so I can right click on any file, and select Send to HFS, then just copy the link, and paste it. One advantage to using HFS is that you are only uploading as receiver is downloading, so you don’t have to upload to a third-party server and then have them download from it. I use it to share files with my sister who’s in South Korea all the time. :)

  4. Amblyomma

    Dropbox it and send the share link. Done.

  5. TheFu

    What, no MegaUpload?

  6. Toby

    DropSend is another excellent service to send large files.

  7. Hank

    How about oFile…been using it for somw time without any issues…

  8. cam2644

    I’ve used We Transfer and found it did very well

  9. John

    SendSpace.com is what I use.

  10. CareyV

    Let’s see. I have 25gb of free space on skydive and 50gb free on Box. The only one in your list that is intriguing is yousendit with it’s outlook plugin. 2gb of free space? Hardly a selling feature…

  11. Sam

    You can get the kicksend app in Google chrome.. Perfect for sending a lot of photos to my 75 year old aunt and 87 year old grandmother.

  12. zepe

    DropSend

  13. k4rizmz

    No mention of dropbox?

    Weird.

  14. B Pratt

    Been using MediaFire for years. Free and fast, although you need to split files larger than 200MB. This is actually a good thing for download because you can download multiple files simultaneously.

  15. Gregg DesElms

    “JustBeamIt” is actually the best service listed here; and this article does it a disservice.

    Most or all of the other options involve uploading the file to the service, and then the service making it available to the other person… both of which things involve the utilization of the services both bandwidth and server disk space, hence the reason none of them allow unlimited bandwidth or disk space use without charging a fee.

    JustBeamIt, though, simply creates a means by which the receiving party may click on a link which, in turn, connects said recipient — not through, but simply as a sort of “referral” by — the JustBeamIt website, directly to the sender’s PC, and begins pulling the file in question DIRECTLY from said sender’s PC to the receiver’s PC, without it going “through” the JustBeamIt website. It’s actually peer-to-peer, then; and it sort of mimics the paradigm of a screen-sharer and/or desktop-control utility, the website of which simply helps people connect, directly, with one another, but through which doesn’t actually pass any realtime data between them.

    By doing it that way, there are no costs, no limitations on size, and no limitation on accumulated bandwidth usage or anything else because the file never uses the JustBeamIt service’s bandwidth or disk space. All it does is set-up a little peer-to-peer-style tunnel, of sorts, that remains alive, but NOT, as the article wrongly says, until “either” party leaves the page, but, rather, only until the SENDER’s browser leaves the page…

    …and by “leave,” I mean that the sender’s browser actually closes the JustBeamIt sending page’s tab, or closes his/her browser altogether. The receiver of the file can visit the JustBeamIt URL, then change his/her mind and close the tab, or even the browser, and still come back to the same URL again, later; which URL will still be active and useful as long as the SENDER has not closed his/her tab on which is the corresponding JustBeamit sending page.

    And so doing is no big deal. Keeping that tab open doesn’t tie-up the sender’s browser. The sender does not need to keep his/her JustBeamIt page’s sending tab in the foreground. As long as the tab’s open, then the sending user can go open other tabs and do whatever else s/he’d like in the browser while the receiving user navigates to the JustBeamIt URL and pulls the file directly from the sender’s machine in the sender’s background, in a truly peer-to-peer manner. So it’s hardly a limitation. The sending person could even create the sending page on the JustBeamIt website, then text or phone or email the appropriate URL to the receiving person, and then the sender just leaves the browser open — whether or not actually on the JustBeamIt sending page’s — and then just go to bed, if s/he likes. I hardly see that as very much of a limitation; though I concede that if it’s likely that the receiver will not even be aware of the URL, and/or will not try to receive for several hours, then keeping the browser open (even if not with the JustBeamIt sending page’s tabe in the foreground) could be cumbersome.

    That’s why I like site-specific browser tools which can effectively create a web/cloud app out of virtually any web page. I still use the old Mozilla “Prism” (which, sadly, is no longer available) to create a desktop icon for JustBeamIt, and then I use it to launch JustBeamIt like a web app, and then it’s the only tiny Prism page that I need to keep open in the background, and not my whole browser. Since Chrome (the browser I use) can sometimes get cluttered-up with temp and cache and history files, and will slow-down, sometimes necessitating closing and re-opening the browser, it’s nice to have the JustBeamIt sending page open in something else, entirely, in the background. Of course, I still need to be careful, in that case, not to reboot the machine; but that’s something I do, at most, only once a day; and the machine’s always on ’round the clock, otherwise.

    The need to keep the sending machine on, and the JustBeamIt sending screen open in at least SOME kind of browser, to keep the “tunnel” open for the receiver, is yet another reason for really SERIOUS Internet users to re-task an old computer (heck, even a laptop could work) as a “home server,” which can be done even without using actual server — or even “home” server — software. Any Windows version will do, if you set things up right, and know how to configure your router, etc. In such case, then, since the server is rarely off or even rebooted, the JustBeamIt screen can be open on the desktop of the server, while the sender uses his/her normal computer (on the same home LAN) normally. Or so, at least, is how I do things.

    JustBeamIt is, then, trust me, actually the best choice of the bunch. No limits. No costs. JustBeamIt uses-up virtually none of its own bandwidth, and none of its server disk space, on your transfer, and takes just a fraction of a second to create the URL to the file on the sender’s machine, which URL said sender then simply conveys to the recipient, and then the sender need only remember not to close the tab on which is the JustBeamIt sending web page until the recipient has finished pulling the file. The sender, though, may open more tabs and do whatever else s/he wants, while the JustBeamIt tab just sits there, in the background, just keeping the data pipe open for the benefit of just the recipient.

    Justly.

    I wish this website were more careful with how it characterizes things. Don’t be in such a hurry; please bother to figure stuff out, and accurately assess what are and are not the salient benefits, and downsides or limitations, if any; then please accurately convey how they really and truly balance against one another. I’d rather use something like JustBeamIt than any of the other services which limit file size, or accumulated bandwidth unless I’m willing to pay a fee.

    ____________________________
    Gregg L. DesElms
    Napa, California USA
    gregg at greggdeselms dot com

    DISCLAIMER: I have nothing, whatsoever, to do with the JustBeamIt site, or any of the other services, here. I’m simply an end-user and consultant who uses JustBeamIt, and recommends it to others, with no benefit therefrom, whatesoever, to me. I’ve only ever even had email contact with JustBeamIt’s owners when suggesting better ways for them to do JustBeamIt on smartphones and tablets, for which suggestions they thanked me, and some of which suggestions, I subsequently noticed, they took.

  16. cheapcarinsu

    I think apathetic is closer.
    People forgot that raising kids takes effort, and raising good kids takes lots of effort.

  17. Scott

    I think this calls for a comparison chart…

  18. caralu

    Some time I do not wanna spend time uploading and …, so in Windows I use HFS (http://www.rejetto.com/hfs/ ) and under Linux I use Meiga or JetHttp. They make my PC work like a server FTP. Easy as a pie!

  19. john3347

    All these applications and not even a passing mention of the vastly superior photo email client – SkyDrive. Far and away the best large file email client as well as the best numerous file client. I occasionally send 75 to 100 photos to multiple recipients – high resolution photos that would each one be too large for many email clients. I seldom get a reply, “I couldn’t open the pictures.”

  20. kevin

    Check out http://www.ClickandSend.com.

    Its free to send files (unlimited size) and it also allows you to track your files. Super secure and easy to use. Best part is that you dont need to download any software!

    Sign up for free and start using it – absolutely free!

Get Free Articles in Your Inbox!

Join 134,000 newsletter readers

Email:

Go check your email!