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A Look at Free File Hosting Services

File Hosting, Free File, Ring Tones, Terms of Service, Zip Files

When I recently had need of a way to download ring tones and graphics to my Virgin Mobile cell phone, I began checking out the free file hosting sites, also known as file sharing, some of which was SaveFile.com, File Den and GlobalShare. One of the first things I noticed was that there was some major differences in between the free services offered by differing companies, and there was differences in the reasons people used the file sharing services.

When I did a search for a free file hosting service, I quickly realized that file hosting was a big business. There is many file hosting sites that charge a fee for their services, and many more that are available only to students of specific universities or group members. I didn’t know there was that much use for file sharing, at least by everyday people with everyday needs like mine. Some were uploading clips of music files, others were uploading photographs, digital art and software.

First of all, some services only hosted certain file types. While this is something I should have looked for in the beginning, I didn’t realize it till I had created an account and tried to upload files. For instance, one service hosted only zip files, another hosted only image files. So when you are choosing the right service for you, plan ahead. Know what you are wanting to upload, know what you might upload in the future, then pick the one that best fits your needs.

Another difference is the amount of time that the service will store your files. Some will store a file indefinitely if it is being downloaded at least once every thirty days. Since we are talking about free services, it behooves the companies to limit the amount of space taken by dead files. Unfortunately, this could mean that any files you upload can be removed before you know it. To protect yourself from lost files when using a free file hosting service, always keep a backup.

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One thing to pay very close attention to is the terms of service. The terms of service varies from company to company, but a common “theme” to watch out for is their claims to your property. Why would a company want the files that you download? I’m not sure, but I imagine that the only files that they would want free use of is the ones that could make them money. Of course, offering a free service in order to take advantage of an unsuspecting client isn’t a new idea. So while the free service is a great idea for those wanting to share frivolous files, it probably isn’t the best place for uploading your band’s promo music or your un-copyrighted literary works.

Once I learned the differences, I was able to proceed with my plans for downloading my ring tones and graphics to my cell phone. More importantly, I also know what to upload and what to keep to myself.