Publishing a File to the Web — The Easy Way

Let’s face it, there are just some chores that nobody wants to do:

  • scrubbing the shower
  • organizing the garage
  • cleaning out the cat box

these are just a few that come immediately to mind.

I can’t help you with any of those, but here are some everyday web chores I can make a bit simpler for you:

  • You’re sending out an e-newsletter and want to include a link to a PDF resource that you’ve created.
  • You’re sending an e-mail to someone and want to attach a file, but it’s too big to send via e-mail.
  • You’re posting a blog and want to include a link to an MP3 or other file that you have created.

All of these things have a common theme:  you have a file of some kind that you would like to publish on the web so you can provide a link to that file.

No problem.  I have just the tool for you.  It’s called “dropbox” (dropbox.com).  And it’s free (for up to 2G of online storage). Dropbox makes it easy — nearly trivial — to publish a file to the web.  Here’s how it works.

Once you have signed up for dropbox and installed dropbox onto your computer (available for PC, Mac and Linux), dropbox will create a folder (just like your “Documents” folder on a PC).  Within this folder there is another folder called “Public”.  You can drag-and-drop files into that Public folder.  Everything you drop into that folder is published onto the web.  To get the web address, just right-click on the file and select “Dropbox -> Copy public link”.  You can paste that link into your e-newsletter, e-mail or blog.  The file stays published on the web, until you remove it.

It’s pretty easy.

I’ve created a screencast to demonstrate this in action.  Take a look!

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