20 great free online file storage services

Please Digg this if you find it useful. A few years ago, I posted a long list of free online file sharing services. If you haven’t used a sharing service to transport large files from one computer/location to another, you’re missing out. It’s a whole lot cheaper, and most times, faster than burning CDs or lugging around an external hard drive. It’s also a little more secure than just tossing your document onto a “who knows how reliable” USB keydrive. Rather than post an exhaustive list of services, I decided this time to focus on 20 of the better services I’ve come across. I have tried every one on this list and found the experience satisfactory to excellent. As for me, I prefer two of these. MediaFire is fast and reliable. With its rather low 100MB file size limit, you might be turned off. But the simple site layout, speed and reliability, make MediaFire a gem. They make it as simple as it can possibly get to share your files. I also like the fact that they’ve been around for a long time. For files that are larger than 100MB (and that I don’t want to bother splitting up), I use File Dropper. It’s another simple to use site that I’ve had great luck with. Though the speed isn’t quite as good as MediaFire, it’s still better than most I’ve tried. And the large file size limit makes it perfect for transferring large video files when a DVD burner isn’t available. Keep in mind that the File Size Limit listed for each service is NOT the total storage space allotted, it’s just the limit of each individual file you can upload. Most services offer anywhere between 2GB to unlimited. Also keep in mind that free online storage services rely on advertising to pay the bills. When the ad clicks dry up, the service goes away. Many of these sites, such as MediaFire, have been in business for a long time. But many of the sites on my original list didn’t last long. The moral of the story, don’t rely on these “free” sites for important backups. They’re for temporary storage and transfer use only. Megashares File Size Limit: 10GB* (with Custom Uploader, 1.5GB without) Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited* (see FAQ for explanation) URL: http://www.megashares.com File Dropper File Size Limit: 5GB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Forever (deleted only if there is no download activity) URL: http://www.filedropper.com TransferBigFiles File Size Limit: 1GB Download Limit: 20 Downloads File Life: 5 Days* (see FAQ for more details) URL: http://www.transferbigfiles.com SnapDrive File Size Limit: 500MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited URL: http://www.snapdrive.net/ Driveway File Size Limit: 500MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 90 Days (deleted only if there is no download activity in 90 days) URL: http://www.driveway.com zUpload File Size Limit: 500MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 30 Days (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 30 days) URL: http://www.zupload.com Spread-It File Size Limit: 500MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 14 Days URL: http://www.spread-it.com SendSpace File Size Limit: 300MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 9 days) URL: http://www.sendspace.com RapidUpload File Size Limit: 300MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 30 Days (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 30 days) URL: http://www.rapidupload.com FileFactory File Size Limit: 300MB Download Limit: Unknown* (per user download limit per 24 hours) File Life: Unknown URL: http://www.filefactory.com MegaUpload File Size Limit: 250MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 90 days) URL: http://www.megaupload.com divShare File Size Limit: 200MB Download Limit: 50GB per month File Life: Unlimited URL: http://www.divshare.com Media Fire File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited URL: http://www.mediafire.com MiHD File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited (deleted 30 days after last download) URL: http://mihd.net/ Easy Share File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited (deleted 30 days after last download) URL: http://www.easy-share.com 4Shared File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited (deleted 30 days after last download) URL: http://www.4shared.com QuickSharIt File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: Unlimited* (see FAQ for more details) URL: http://www.quickshareit.com/ Uploading File Size Limit: 100MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 30 Days (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 30 days) URL: http://www.uploading.com Bigupload File Size Limit: 50MB Download Limit: Unlimited File Life: 30 Days (Deleted only if there is no download activity in 30 days) URL: http://www.bigupload.com FileDen File Size Limit: 50MB Download Limit: 5GB per month File Life: Unknown URL: http://www.fileden.com Please Digg this if you found it useful.

Free image templates for identity design

Among the numerous resources that can be found over at CreativeBits are a set of image templates for identity design. These “blanks” are perfect for showing off your design ideas to clients. There are around 200 images in 5 different categories available. The downloads are broken up by category and are anywhere between 7 and 17MB each. You can download the templates here. The download links for each category are below the photos.

Developers, writers, Mac users: Just shut the hell up

I’ll tell you right up front, this is a long-winded, foul-mouthed, inconsiderate rant. I’ve been storing some of these comments up for weeks, and in some cases months, just waiting to explode. Below is my abbreviated list of people who can just shut the hell up: MacHeist, developers, and participants: To all of you “other” developers who cry and complain that MacHeist (and similar promotions) are hurting all developers by de-valuating applications and the work it takes to create them. Please, do us a favor and shut your yap. I’m fairly certain that nobody from the MacHeist crew held a gun to the head of the participating developers and forced them to jump on-board. They did it to make money – the same reason you make your products. If they sell their apps for cheap, then they’ll have to deal with the consequences of making less money but still provide the updates and support required. Worst-case scenario is that they made a little extra money that they probably wouldn’t have made otherwise. It’s their call, So just shut up. And for all the cry-babies and whiners who complain about the quality or selection of the applications made available for MacHeist (and other similar promotions). Please do the rest of us a favor and shut the hell up. MacHeist gave away nearly a dozen apps for FREE! As in, it didn’t cost you a stinking dime. So shut up. The bundle of applications at the end cost less than half what it would cost you to buy separately, so it’s a smokin’ deal. We’re all terribly sorry that you expected Adobe Photoshop to be included in the $49 bundle, but you’re an idiot and we’re all tired of seeing that sewer beneath your nose spewing silly requests and comments like that. If these bundles don’t include the application you desperately wanted, and you can’t believe the entire planet doesn’t use, I have a suggestion. Shut up and go buy that app directly from the developer. They could use the money. But please stop trying to convince reasonable people out there that the bundle would be so much better and you would actually buy it if it only included your favorite sticky-note app. Nobody is forcing you to buy the bundle, and nobody cares if you don’t. Wow, that felt good to get that off my chest. Here’s some more: (more…)

Setting InDesign’s text wrap globally

Adobe InDesignTired of setting your text wrap with each new object you create in Adobe InDesign? Much like setting colors or character styles globally, you can also set InDesign to always use your preferred text wrap method with new documents. To do so, close all your InDesign documents and open the text wrap panel. Set your preferred text wrap method by clicking on one of the wrap icons. Now, whenever you create a new document, the default text wrap you chose will be used for all objects. To restate the obvious, the new settings will only take effect in NEW InDesign documents.

Phantasm CS rocks Adobe Illustrator

When we talk about plugins, you generally assume we’re talking about Photoshop add-ons. Most people don’t even realize that you can add features to Adobe Illustrator using plugins, let alone name a good one. Phantasm CS Studio 1.0 by Astute Graphics is not only one of those good ones, but it’s a whole suite of good ones.

Where most plugins have the goal of creating artwork for you, Phantasm CS is more of a production tool in that it’s main set of tools involves the ability to adjust colors by Brightness/Contrast, Hue/Saturation, Curves, Levels and more. But Phantasm CS doesn’t completely leave you out in the cold when it comes to cool “design” features. The Halftone tools is uber-cool if you ask me, but I’ll get into that later. (more…)

Creating chrome text in Photoshop

One of the more popular text effects to use in Adobe Photoshop is chrome text. You can search for hours to find the perfect Layer Style to make your job easy, but you may never find it. Instead, try this Metal Text Tutorial over at PSGallery.co.uk. The tutorial is easy to follow and can produce fantastic results with a little experimentation. From personal experience, I’ve found that your results will vary widely depending on the font you choose to use. Some areas to play with are the bevel settings and variations. While the tutorial does give you exact settings to use, you will most likely find that they don’t produce the desired effect on all fonts. Play around with them to get it to look the way you want.

Converting images from color to black and white in Photoshop

There are many ways to convert an image from color to black & white in Adobe Photoshop. I’ve posted tips before about this, but with Photoshop CS3, there’s a dead-simple way to do it that produces great results, and offers you the ability to fine-tune your conversion. Instead of simply selecting Image>Grayscale to convert your image to B&W, select Image>Adjustments>Black&White (Command + Option + Shift + B for you keyboard shortcut junkies). In the resulting Black and White conversion dialog box, you’ll be presented with the opportunity to adjust various colors in the conversion process. If you’re familiar with how this works, you can adjust how each color in your image converts to gray. If that’s a little more work than you wish to do, you can simply click on the image and move your cursor around to have Photoshop automatically adjust your image based on the sampled color. As you can see in the image above, the normal Convert to Grayscale method produces a flat and quite dull image. Though this may work for some images, using the Black and White Adjustment allows you to to fine-tune your conversion to give you more contrast and retain more details in the image.

Quick Photoshop cropping tip

When you’re trying to crop an image close to the edge of the document in Photoshop, you may notice that the crop tool always wants to “snap” to the edge of the document, or close to a layer object edge. This is a result of Photoshop’s Snap To feature, which normally is quite handy! Hold down the Control key to turn off the Snap To feature, temporarily allowing you to freely size your crop area.

Using Google wildcard feature to answer questions

It seems like every other day Google releases something new, or you learn something about the #1 search engine that you didn’t know about before. Today, I hope to have something for you in the latter category. It seems like every other day Google releases something new, or you learn something about the #1 search engine that you didn’t know about before. Today, I hope to have something for you in the latter category. Google offers fill-in-the-blank searching (also known as wildcards), in it’s search engine. You can ask simple questions in your search and use an asterisk to indicate the “answer” you’re looking for. For example, in the screenshot below, I’m searching for the name of the CEO of Apple. As you can see, I worded my question simply and used the asterisk in the proper location. In the screenshot above, you can see that I got the answer to my question. The feature works quite well, though it may take a time or two to figure out the best way to ask the question. Sometimes simply re-wording the question can bring about completely different answers.