Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Sharing Large Video Files on RapidShare

I had a large (500 MB) video file to share with a client today. It was too big to host on my free accounts at Dropbox or MediaFire, so I used RapidShare to host the file. But RapidShare has no intuitive way to share a file with the public. 

(I found out later that all file folders are set to Private as default, as of January 2013, to provide greater user security and privacy -- but locking down a file is a bit excessive, don't you think? I mean, it negates the "Share" of RapidShare! Maybe they should call it RapidUpload instead....)

I had to get the client to start an account at RapidShare, then we added each other as contacts. But I still was unable to share the video with him. 

My folder was set to Private and I could find no way to set it to Public. We were on the phone trying to figure this out. The client contact is a computer programmer and, in spite of our combined expertise, we kept failing at the task.

In my extreme frustration and desperation, I Googled the problem with the query being "share RapidShare file download."

I found a forum called Fan Edit which contained the instruction to create a new subfolder and then set the download privileges for your contacts on that new subfolder.

So I created a new subfolder called New Videos, dragged and dropped the video file into the New Videos subfolder, and right clicked on it to set the Privileges. When the Privileges panel appeared, I saw my contact's name, and I clicked on buttons to the right of his name to enable him to see the contents of this folder and to download the data in this folder.

He was then able to start downloading the video file.

It was convoluted and time-consuming, but we finally solved the problem.

I am now looking for an alternative to RapidShare for sharing large files. 

The way hosting companies can do this for free is to set a time limit on how long a file remains on their servers. Your recipient has, for example, 7 days to download the file, then it gets deleted.

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