Back when I first looked into file sharing (or filesharing), I was unpleasantly surprised to learn
comes with spyware. So obviously that was not an option for me.
Some time later, I came across WinMX
comes without any decent explanation, so perhaps that explains why I heard little about it from friends and other people. They use Kazaa or eDonkey
isn't that hard to set up though, a lot can be learned by simple experimenting. If that scares you off, there is also a guide
available from someone, and ofcourse you can search the web or newsgroups for info.
Perhaps my earlier
talk about WinMX
got you interested into giving it a go. Soon you will probably find out that it is better to have more servers to access. Say hi to NapMX
. NapMX retrieves current Napigator
servers, so you can import those into WinMX
and access them.
[June 29th 2004 - Edit: the version mentioned above no longer works. Here
you'll find a new link.]
[Edit 22-09-05: WinMX
is temporarily down
It seems WinMX
is currently down
, perhaps as a result of legal threats. It seems there are plenty of people arriving here looking for information on the status of the network, so I guess it does have quite a following. If I hear more about it, I'll post it, since it would be sad to see another P2P service go. [Source]
As you probably know
, I like WinMX
. However, I realize other services exist. I also know many people looking down on WinMX
and thinking Kazaa, eDonkey and such are better. It makes sense that not all files will be shared on all networks. Reason enough for me to experiment with an alternative program.
This weekend I installed eMule
. After using it for two days, I have mixed feelings.
When using Winmx
is a good way to import OpenNap servers. Unfortunately, the old version no longer works. The site that it used to get its servers, is no longer active. Instead, download
a new one that should work with other lists.
Plenty of attention for this news
today: apparently, file sharers are moving away from the Bittorrent (BT) network, because of recent raids on BT link servers. One of the new file sharing programs seeing an increase of use, is eDonkey. eMule
uses the same network, so I guess it's going to be really busy there. Maybe it is time to move back to WinMX
. After all, with law enforcement agencies cracking down on users, and copyright holders sending out fake files, being on a network that gets less attention has its advantages.
It seems like the files I want to transfer, get bigger and bigger. At first, I could mail a small attachment. Soon, files became too big for mail. These days, I can use Dropload for larger files, up to 50 MB, as mentioned earlier
When it comes to transferring files between just two computers, FTP is a good options. Wait, let me correct myself, FTP is the
option. In fact, way before we had file sharing networks like eMule and WinMX
, FTP was the way to get files online. Legal files, but also illegal ones. What is required to use FTP, is an FTP client and an FTP server. If you have a client, you connect to a server, and download the files that are there. It is as simple as using any other program in Windows.
Windows comes with its own command-line version of ftp, so it can be used at any Windows computer. For comfortable use though, you will quickly switch to a program with a graphical interface. My favorites used to be the good old WS_FTP
and now includes FlashFXP
I always figured that I would only use the clients, to up- and download files to other people's servers. However, now I have seen that it is pretty easy to set up your own ftp server, using a program in Windows. No doubt there are more alternatives for doing this, but I happened to come upon Serv-U
. A simple program, that runs under Windows.
After installation, it can be configured to fit your needs. Add users, and assign priviliges to each user. You tell the program which folders are accessible to a user, and what she can do in that folder. Typically, you allow a user to read, write, and/or delete files.
Is an ftp server only for big players, looking to distribute files to hundreds of people? Nope. Sure, that may be the most likely application of it, but it is also good to “just” exchange files between two people. Granted, the price for this particular software is a bit steep if you only want to transfer a movie or some mp3's. If that is all you need to transfer, using a cd-r is cheaper. For a more continuous exchange of files it is quite helpful though.
For some of my file transfers I could use the ftp storage of this account, or one at work. The only problem is, that storage is usually quite limited. 50-100MB is quite a lot already. By using Serv-U, I can have an ftp folder the size of my hard drive, if I want.
Maybe there are cheaper alternatives as well. A while back I read about a program that allows you to set up a peer-to-peer connection between two computers. That is probably similar to this, but I have no idea what it was called, nor how much it cost :)
published a proposal for a new pricing scheme which would compensate (music) rights owners for people downloading and sharing their files. This is not a new approach (see e.g. this
and I am sure some people came up with the basic premise before, although probably not as detailed), but nonetheless an interesting one.
I won't go into the details of how this could be implemented, because there are too many uncertainties with that. There would need to be a way to divide money, to determine what is downloaded etc. The basic idea is simple: people pay a fixed price per month (say $5-$10) and in return they can download as much music as they want. This money goes to record labels and artists.