You find yourself having to deal with a technological problem that you absolutely can’t figure out: you have to transfer a document to a series of people but the list of recipients is immense. You thought about sending this file by e-mail but, unfortunately, the file exceeds the specified size. Even if you wanted to, it is impossible for you to upload it as an attachment and send it via email. You absolutely have to be able to perform this operation and you are therefore a bit panicked because you really don’t know what to do anymore.
Don’t worry, I understand you, it happened to me too: what you are facing is a rather common problem and, fortunately, it is easy to solve. The simplest way to send a file (or more than one) to a series of recipients is to upload it to a cloud storage space or to use a hosting service: by uploading this file to the Internet, the recipients, connecting at the address you provide, they will be able to download the document at any time. However, it must be said that there are many services that allow you to upload files to the Web, and they can have different characteristics and purposes: some are designed primarily for sharing — and possible modification — of personal files with a limited audience (e.g. only some selected contacts),
Given these due premises on the possibilities you have available to publish a file on the Web , what I will provide you in this tutorial will be a detailed explanation of which tools to use. Furthermore, for each service indicated, I will guide you step by step in using it, so that you will have no problems figuring out how to use it. All clear? Yes? Very well, then I just have to wish you a good reading and a good “work”.
- How to share personal documents on the web
- How to distribute files on the web
- How to post images on the web
How to share personal documents on the web
If you need to share personal files and documents on the Internet with your friends, relatives, collaborators or, in general, with a public you know, I advise you to rely on a cloud storage service of proven seriousness and efficiency. Platforms of this type allow you to archive your personal files directly on the Internet and, if necessary, to share them with one or more Internet users: on some platforms, access to the file can be limited only to specific email addresses; on others, however, it is sufficient to provide the appropriate link to the recipient, using the sharing systems integrated into the platform itself.
Again, some platforms allow Net users to edit documents shared by others (e.g. text documents, spreadsheets, presentations, and so on): this is an extremely useful feature when multiple people need to work on the same files, for work, study or other purposes that require collaboration. Clearly, in order for a document to be editable, it is absolutely necessary that the rightful owner provides modification permissions .
At the time of writing, there are numerous cloud platforms of this type: almost all of them come with a certain amount of free storage space, which can be expanded by subscribing to a monthly or annual subscription. OneDrive , for example, is the cloud storage platform promoted and managed by Microsoft, which allows you to store personal files, share them with a specific audience and protect their opening with a password.
The service also offers collaborative online editing capabilities, if the shared document can be managed via one of the Microsoft 365 web applications (e.g. Word Online, Excel Online, PowerPoint Online, etc.). The free version of OneDrive, associated with all Microsoft accounts , provides 5 GB of free online space , which can be expanded by subscribing to a subscription plan for the Microsoft 365 platform (with prices starting from €2/year for 100 GB of space) . The OneDrive service is integrated into Windows 10 and Windows 11 and is equally accessible through clients for macOS , apps for Android , iPhone, iPadand dedicated website.
Then there’s Google Drive , the cloud storage system managed by “Big G”: Again, we are in the presence of a service that allows you to store personal files, share them with specific users by invitation or via links and to modify them collaboratively, where possible, subject to the assignment of dedicated permissions. The Google Drive service is associated by default with all Google/Gmail accounts and provides 15 GB of free space , which can be expanded by subscribing to the Google One service (with prices starting at €1.99/month for 100 GB of space ). Files on Google Drive can be shared and viewed via computer clients , Android apps , iPhone, iPadand dedicated website.
iCloud Drive, on the other hand, is Apple’s cloud storage service: the functions of the platform — initially designed for archiving only files from compatible applications on iPhone, iPad and Mac — have been expanded over time and, today, it is possible upload and share personal documents of any kind, even limiting access (and possible modification) to specific email addresses. The free version of iCloud Drive, associated with all Apple IDs, comes with 5GB of free storage, which can be expanded by subscribing to a subscription plan for the iCloud+ service (with prices starting at €0.99/month for 50 GB). The iCloud Drive platform is integrated into the vast majority of Apple devices (iPhone, iPad, Mac and so on), but it is also possible to use the service from the Web and from the appropriate software for Windows .
Without a shadow of a doubt, the Dropbox service also deserves mention : it is one of the longest-lived cloud storage platforms on the market, which allows you to store and share your personal files in an extremely simple way. In its free form, Dropbox offers 2 GB of online space and allows you to share files both for viewing and editing, even with only a small audience, and to obtain statistics on the viewing of shared items. Dropbox’s paid plans, in addition to expanding the space available to the user, they also introduce particularly advanced security, sharing and file control features, useful for multi-user professional environments. You can use Dropbox from your computer, through the dedicated software , using the apps for Android , iPhone and iPad and through the website of the same name.
The methods of using the various services are almost always the same: once you have downloaded the app, the program or reached the site of the chosen platform, you need to create an account and start uploading the files you intend to share, following the instructions received on the screen. Once this is done, simply access the element in question from within the program, app or browser , call up its function menu and choose the item dedicated to sharing .
To give you a concrete example, let me explain how to share a file through the Google Drive service using the various platforms available. If you use the browser , after logging into your account and uploading the file to be shared to the platform , right-click on its preview (available in the My Drive section ) and choose the item Share from the menu that opens.
Now, if you are interested in sharing the file only with a limited audience, type the Gmail addresses of the people of your interest in the appropriate field and press Enter . Subsequently, use the dedicated drop-down menu to choose the permissions to be granted to the various users ( viewer , commenter or editor ) and press the Send button to send the invitations. Selected people will only be able to view or edit the file by logging into the specified Gmail account.
If, on the other hand, you want the file to be accessible by anyone who has the link, set the General access drop-down menu to the Anyone with the link option , press the Copy link and Finish buttons and send the resulting link to anyone you want. using e-mail, social networks, messaging systems and so on.
The operation of the Google Drive app for smartphones and tablets is quite similar: after starting the app in question, tap the File tab , locate the file of your interest and press the symbol ⫶ placed in its correspondence; subsequently, select the Share item from the menu that appears on the screen and follow the same instructions already seen for the computer, in order to share the file with a circle of selected users or with a wider audience.
In any case, if you are interested in learning more about how the platforms I have just mentioned work, take a look at the various thematic tutorials available on my site: how OneDrive works , how Google Drive works , how iCloud Drive works , how Dropbox works and how to share files on dropbox .
How to distribute files on the web
If you need to upload files to the web to distribute them to a large audience of users, over which you are not interested in having control (e.g. to share the files of your interest via links on your website and/or personal social account ), you can turn to a series of platforms which, while offering online storage space, work in a slightly different way than those analyzed above, as they provide specific features aimed at sharing files with a large number of users (eg. limits or concessions on the speed and/or bandwidth available, on the number of simultaneous downloads and so on).
One of these is certainly WeTransfer : it is a historic file exchange service via the Internet, usable both from the Web and from apps for smartphones and tablets, which allows you to send files of 2 GB or less for free (even without registering). , generating a shareable link via email or any other tool of your preference. The links thus generated “expire” after 7 days, after which the uploaded elements are definitively removed from the server.
The space and time limitations mentioned above can be bypassed by subscribing to a subscription plan for the WeTransfer Pro service which, with prices starting from €12/month, allows you to increase the size of shared files up to 20 GB, archive documents server for up to 200 GB of space, to “manually” define the expiration of files and to protect them with passwords. For more information about how to use WeTransfer , I refer you to reading the specific guide I have dedicated to the service.
Another platform widely used for the distribution of files on the net is MEGA : born from the “ashes” of the late MegaUpload, this service (also accessible via apps for smartphones and tablets) allows you to obtain links for files of any type, accessible by practically anyone, with great attention to the privacy and security of the uploaded data . The free version of the service, which requires registration, allows you to upload up to a maximum of 15 GB of files and obtain a limited download bandwidth; to overcome these limits, you must subscribe to a Pro subscriptionto the service, with prices starting at €4.99/month for 400 GB of space and 1 TB of total bandwidth. To find out more, take a look at the tutorial where I explain, in detail, how to use MEGA to share files .
How to post images on the web
If you then have an interest in publishing original images created by you on the Internet, so that other users can view your work and give you an opinion on it, you should evaluate the use of a specific image hosting service . Platforms of this type, in fact, not only allow other registered users to comment on published works, but also to obtain sharing links made specifically for incorporation into third-party sites and blogs; in some cases, the user can also decide whether the published works can be freely downloaded and redistributed or not. Having said that, let me list a series of services of this type, of proven seriousness.
- Imgur: is one of the best-known image hosting platforms worldwide, through which it is possible to publish, share and receive opinions on one’s graphic works. The service can be used for free (with the presence of small advertising banners) but a paid version is available, called Emeral , which removes advertising and adds a series of additional functions.
- Imgbb: another excellent image hosting platform, freely accessible and usable by anyone. The images can be uploaded at no cost and without making any registration, but the size of each file must not exceed 32 MB ; to overcome this limit and eliminate the advertising banners present in the free version (however non-invasive), it is possible to subscribe to a monthly, quarterly or annual subscription plan.
- Postimages: is a hosting service designed primarily for uploading images for embedding purposes. Available at no cost, the platform allows you to upload any type of graphic element, to automatically resize it and also to set a “duration” (1 day, 7 days, 31 days). Uploaded images can be shared via share links, or embedded in various web platforms using available shortcodes.
If you need more information about the topic just covered, I invite you to carefully read my in-depth analysis dedicated, specifically, to hosting services for personal photos and images .