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RapidShare is Shutting down (rapidshare.com)
388 points by mattstrayer on Feb 11, 2015 | hide | past | web | favorite | 139 comments

When Megaupload (and some other sharehosters) died, quite a lot of interesting things just disappeared from the net.

I'm talking about things like small tools that were shared on e.g. xda-developers before Github came, about fan-mods for games etc... The 'big' ones continued living, but if you now e.g. search for a special kernel/ROM for your G1/ADP1 you are mostly out of luck.

It's sad that there's basically no way for an organisation like archive.org to archive things from sharehosters given the unclear (or quite clearly black/gray) law situation and also the missing cooperation with the sharehosters themselves.

>I'm talking about things like small tools that were shared on e.g. xda-developers before Github came, about fan-mods for games etc... The 'big' ones continued living, but if you now e.g. search for a special kernel/ROM for your G1/ADP1 you are mostly out of luck.

This is something that has always sketched me out about the Android rooting and moding scene. "Download this suspect binary from rapid share and run it as root" seemed to be a cornerstone of it.

It's the same with things like game trainers, save editors, etc.. Sign up and give your e-mail address to this forum so that you can see the download link for this file. Which is an outdated version. The new version is in another forum thread on a separate forum, but you have to register to see links. The link is to a rapidshare download page, which rest assured is totally legit.

I honestly don't understand why more people don't create Github accounts and use that to distribute, or at least use their ISP's free web space. Most of these tools have names, are well-known, and are the top hit on Google, but none of them have an actual website that you can go to to see if they've released new versions, something for other games, etc.

It's all very sketch.

Trainers, save editors, translations are basically a common entry point into programming, like a closed knit group of people that love video games and who wants to modify/hack/translate their favourites games. At some point, programming comes to the table and people will start sharing knowledge about it with their own way of doing things. A popular project will get hosted somewhere and the following projects will get hosted there too, simply because they're learning by looking at the popular one. Rapidshare, megauploads, all of these are tools people know before getting into programming, so they just use it. Github is something that comes later, if things get serious.

Dwarf fortress stuff is like that, Minecraft is even worse, you get adfly in the middle :D

>Dwarf fortress stuff is like that

dffd exists for things that aren't github(etc)-appropriate such as tools. No real reason to use anything else unless you're trying to monetise it with adf.ly etc (which might also count as a reason not to download).

> It's all very sketch.

To me it seems very simple: level of effort. Uploading your hack/mod/whatever to rapidshare takes about one minute, or less. On the other hand, if you want to learn about git and github, you have to spend plenty of time on that.

Not true. You can make a nearly empty github repository with a few clicks and start adding releases to it.

You /can/, but it's not a use case that github pushes or that people who don't know github would think of. With rapidshare et al you go to the site and it has a big obvious "upload and share a file" button right on the front page.

So? It's possible, and people can make use of it. They may not know, but this can be remedied by communicating. It's also quite a lot better than using some one-off file host such as rapidshare. See Ixiaus' post for more information.

Defaults are important, and what's optimized for one use case isn't optimized for another. An opinionated site that just provides the simplest possible interface for uploading and downloading files is a valuable thing.

(Plus I suspect that if a lot of people started hosting multi-megabyte binaries on github, their policies would change pretty quickly)

There are already many, many mulit-mega binaries hosted on github. It is what the releases feature is for.

But yes, the most simplest site is the best for the most simplest people. However we're talking about people who spent a lot of time into creating their mod/whatever here. They can spend a minute or two more to figure out distribution.

I have no idea why you're being downvoted but you're absolutely right. You can create a new repo, click on "releases", click on "draft new release". Type in the description in markdown (easier than HTML) and upload a binary attachment, hit publish.

Zero knowledge of git was necessary. Oh and also if you want to edit that README.md? You can do it from inside Github too, still zero need to know git.

Come on... ask any one out of the IT world and they all prefer not using GitHub... your vision is way to oriented from a developer perspective.

I honestly don't understand why more people don't create Github accounts and use that to distribute, or at least use their ISP's free web space.

The (pseudo)anonymous aspect of not having a fixed identity which could easily be linked to something else is both convenient and valuable to privacy?

Github is very handy for someone creating a portfolio and showing off a history of their programming skills. But you could get the pseudo-anonimity with a separate Github account. It's just not worth the effort, the public of these hacks doesn't demand it.

Even better, anybody wanting to distribute something using free services should upload to multiple services (github included). Redundancy is a good thing.

They get a commission if you sign up for rapidshare to get that fast lane download. Basically MLM.

There's a huge amount of "pirated" software/porn shared on many of those platforms for that reason.

What makes random binaries uploaded to GitHub releases more trusthworthy? You still only have a random online identity linked to it. All trust still comes from the context of the announcement posts.

This is something that has always sketched me out about the Android rooting and moding scene. "Download this suspect binary from rapid share and run it as root" seemed to be a cornerstone of it.

The warez/cracks scene was essentially the same thing, and yet if you knew where you were getting things from, it was quite safe. The antipiracy groups have since been spreading plenty of FUD (and some possibly attaching malware to releases, I don't know) and working with the AV/security industry to make you believe otherwise, however.

Just as a warez/cracks group would be called out for it and very publicly shamed if they put malware in their releases, the same would happen in the Android scene. It's true that there are many rather clueless users (known as "leechers" in the vernacular), but there are also many knowledgeable ones and all it takes is one to give sufficient evidence of malice to trigger the "immune reaction".

But it's even worse than that. People run random operating systems on devices they carry 24/7. Devices with microphones, multiple cameras, access to personal and work email, text messages, passwords, your location.

And there are so many places for things to wrong. Any one of the following could be malicious, incompetent, or compromised:

* The ROM's maintainer. There are many groups here, for example many ROMs are based on ParanoidAndroid, which is based on Cyanogenmod, which is based on AOSP.

* The device maintainer. Typically each brand/model device has its own volunteers to maintain any proprietary blobs or special upgrade process

* The hackers who provide special binaries that root each device, unlock the bootloader, etc.

* The added packages you typically get separately from the ROM, for example Google Apps.

* The build machine, typically just some random box donated semi-anonymously by someone

* The web hosting (without TLS, of course) provided by some other random person.

I love Android. I compile and run my own ROM. But the current scene scares the shit out of me.

It's not clear to me how this differs qualitatively from the current situation with equipment manufacturers all doing their own customizations to devices. Quantitatively there's a difference - a smaller pool of devs/maintainers to potentially subvert and a much smaller pool of potential users vs. a much larger manufacturer dev team and a much larger potential pool of users.

How much would it cost to buy off, for example, the entire radio hardware/firmware team at a manufacturer in your own country (meaning pretty much either China or South Korea), and on a governmental scale how reasonable or unreasonable is that number?

When you put it like that, it seems inconceivable that the alphabet agencies in various countries didn't do this years ago.

Ahem Qualcomm.

I was thinking just as much as Glenn Greenwald's allegation back in 2013 that the NSA would intercept international shipments of Cisco (and other) equipment, implant backdoors, then send it on its way with factory seals.

Back when I was more involved with security research, and WinXP SP1 was new and shiny, I remember that there were several trojaned XP .isos floating around.

The fact that antipiracy and AV groups have an interest in getting you scared does not mean that there's no reason to be scared of running random binaries you found on the net.

And most people do not feed directly off the warez/cracks hubs - they feed of whatever they can find. Which means a lot of opportunity for bad actors.

>The antipiracy groups have since been spreading plenty of FUD (and some possibly attaching malware to releases, I don't know) and working with the AV/security industry to make you believe otherwise, however.

Isn't this racketeering?

Furthermore, AV programs which classify keygens, etc. in similar categories as keyloggers/ adware, etc. (such as Microsoft Security Essentials) also have a net effect of increasing malware prevalence by training users to ignore AV warnings.

The difference being that making an Android build is not an illegal activity.

Why are you using the past tense, as if software piracy didn't exist anymore? People in my country pirate everything (including Android apps and games).

I'm using past tense to contrast it with today where the amount of spam/(true) malware-filled content around, especially for popular apps, is much higher than it was before.

This is generally taken care of using checksums, assuming you trust the source. Of course, trusting the source is the hard part. CyanogenMod, for example, has a chain of trust for their releases; though they host their own binaries.

It is too bad that these went down, but yech, sharing binaries or even entire OS images made of open source code... what if you want to change one configuration option or line of code while keeping whatever special modifications were made? What if you want to combine the changes in X fancy ROM with Y? (Never mind that the kernel is GPL.)

I'm not an Android user myself, but I will nevertheless suggest that optimally these things would be distributed as source on GitHub, with a deterministic build system guaranteed to be able to reproduce binaries in the future, and only secondarily as binaries.

I agree but an Android build takes hours and hours and has a complex setup. Even a pretty dedicated Android user would prefer a binary.

I build them on AWS now, mainly since it takes me 5hrs to download the source compared to a few minutes on AWS. Anybody who knows of a better cloud building service? I consistently fail to estimate instance costs.

You are using a spot instance right?

I am, and it doesn't cost much at all just sometimes there's problems with builds you have to manually track down I'd rather pay a flat monthly fee somewhere and get x amount of builds/bandwidth if possible. Build time is around 14mins only + the few minutes to repo source + few seconds to run my script that yoinks the junk from Android and the kernel.

I'm certain you can use travis-ci for that purpose.

care to share that script?

This is why I have stopped believing that "The Year of the Linux Desktop" would even be a good thing.

Android has "regular old joe sixpack" users by the millions, but has the Android community actually benefited from that? The existing "desktop linux" community has their act together far more than the Android community, despite (or because of?) not having those legions of unskilled users.

Benefits have come out of it. It's not about the number of users who have it, but about the money companies are backing the users with. Linux has gotten some great new features that benefit the ecosystem as a whole that came out of Google's work on ChromeOS and Android. dm-verity is a good example of this.

Hardware support specifically is often cited as one of the ways that "desktop linux" would benefit from joe-sixpack users. That is what has always been lacking from "desktop linux".

Hardware support in official ROMs from phone manufactures is good of course, but what is freely available to the Android community is much worse. It turns out joe-sixpack doesn't really give any shits about hardware support being open-sourced.

It's nice that Google has given back some stuff, but that's peanuts compared with what the "year of the linux desktop" meme promises.

I bricked my Samsung GS3 (SPH crappy one) doing just that. 8 hours off-and-on of random binary / flashing and on the 9th hour, bricked. Horrible, horrible experience.

I wish the Internet Archive had an embargo feature, where you could push data in and while it wouldn't be served, it would be stored until a later date when copyright issues could be worked out.

This is an interesting idea.

It would work kind of like an escrow, right? Where the "release/publish clause" could be tied to copyright expiration or other legal events like you say.

The problem I see is, how do you filter/reject the amount of stuff you would have to store without even being public? AFAIK, the IA has issues storing so much of the already-public data, so storing "dark" (non-public/unpublished) stuff would potentially mean lots of cruft and garbage so to speak.

However it does sound very interesting. I hope we can some day achieve truly permanent data storage systems were we could just dump all of this and not worry much about it again.

Edit: Thinking about it a bit more, how feasible does the following sound:

Anyone interested in helping the IA could buy a sort of Drobo/NAS that is able to store only IA stuff (ala Freenet). Everything is encrypted of course, and then only way to access the files is when the escrow trigger fires off, the private key is released at the IA archive and then every owner of the IA-box will have access to that particular part of the archive (as well as regular IA users through web).

It's kind of like an HDD preloaded full of torrents, and then the differences or new additions can be streamed to your local IA-box as needed. You could even filter what kind of stuff would you like to help the IA archive. For example, I'm a big fan of movies so I prioritize that category (up to a certain % so that no one category is forgotten).

Does anyone know if anything resembles this? I mean, I could very well leave a low-powered NAS to help the IA serve their content, store it for later use, etc. And I imagine (hope) that a lot of other people would too. It would be a way of donating electricity, space to a worthy cause.

Would tape storage, a la Amazon Glacier, be an efficient way to archive these, since they don't need to be accessed except with an offline process?

I certainly would hope so. However I'm not sure who is going to survive the longest: an organization focused on that specific goal, or a company that might change focus or go bankrupt altogether. Even though AWS is a pretty big part of Amazon (I'm guesstimating here, might be wrong), I would hope the IA would last for longer or have specific strategies to address different catastrophic scenarios that would overall make it more efficient/safe than AWS.

I recall some article that said that AWS was about 3% of Amazons income, but it was basically pure profit.

Well not pure profit because the servers cost money. The customer base is so large now that they have way more capacity than they would need for themselves.

The matching of Google's prices when they released was a good indicator of how much was profit though.

Tape needs to be taken care of just like anything else via re-tensioning and the like. There is no write and forget media as far as I can tell.

Ninja edit: That is not super price prohibitive.

> There is no write and forget media as far as I can tell.

Sure there is, you just micro-engrave it onto a nickel disc with a laser... http://blog.longnow.org/02009/05/21/what-13500-pages-micro-e...

Edit: Also paper. Low-acid paper in dry cabinets keeps a long, long time.

also the m-disc is a dvd/blueray that lasts 1000 years

.. supposedly lasts ..

> Does anyone know if anything resembles this? I mean, I could very well leave a low-powered NAS to help the IA serve their content, store it for later use, etc. And I imagine (hope) that a lot of other people would too. It would be a way of donating electricity, space to a worthy cause.

The Internet Archive serves torrent files for every object they store, so in theory, anyone could have a NAS that would crawl those torrent files and then join the swarm/seed for all of those objects.

That would be a hell of an open source project. The Internet Archive would then be a metadata repository and seeder of last resort. #shutUpAndTakeMyMoney

Isn't that already the case? I heard that they already download well-tagged music from private trackers like what.cd which could be published if its copyright expires eventually. There's a page on archive.org with "what_cd" in it's url and no public items: https://archive.org/details/what_cd

They have such a feature, they call it "darking".

Would be more interesting if copyright on anything created after Mickey Mouse would ever expire -- and unfortunately it doesn't look like it ever will.

the same is true within the styles of music that I like. It was compounded by the fact the other centralized file hosts, like Rapidshare and Mediafire, were forced to delete TONS of content on the same day that Megaupload folded.

There are many obscure demos, rehearsals, etc. that disappeared from the internet and most haven't reappeared since. I knew some bloggers who had uploaded probably in the range of 5000-10000 old metal demos, and these guys were careful to not post copyrighted material, but it seemed like if they got even a single strike against their account, everything was deleted.

I hope someone imaged those servers, otherwise a lot of that content might be lost forever.

I have fond memories of Rapidshare. Even the cats.

Haha, just told a friend about those cat-captchas...

For the ones that do not know what is meant: http://www.geeksaresexy.net/2008/04/24/rapidshare-captcha-wi...

I wonder if it's feasible to build a hosting site that strictly forbids (and actively removes) copyright infringing material, intended more for this kind of file hosting than for piracy.

Monetising would be a challenge, since rapidshare et al mainly made money by selling premium accounts, which are generally only attractive for piracy purposes.

If you want to share something legit, Dropbox/Google Drive/etc. seem to work fine and have working business models.

Both require registration and are far more than just file hosts. The thing I like about rapidshare and other file hosts is that you can just drop a file on it and a minute later get a link. No thinking or effort required, no activation emails (or endless onboarding emails for that matter), no passwords to remember.

There's no such thing as "copyright infringing material", it depends on how has uploaded it. If I download an awesome ROM from megaupload using the link shared by its creator and upload it myself to megaupload to get my own link, the very same file is both infringing and not infringing copyright.

This is what people who were appalled that megaupload would only remove one of the links to a deduplicated file, instead of removing the file itself, failed (or refused) to understand.

I think it was never very optimal to share roms through megaupload, but it seemed to be the easiest option. I'm happy to see more rom devs starting to use the needrom.com. They have rom hosting as well as commenting/rating system, it's not perfect but at least they have lots of android roms available.

When MP3.com was shut down, I shed a tear :-( It was an amazing collection predating the YouTube's of today.

The second and third albums I bought in my life were from mp3.com. That site had a huge impact on where I am today (teaching music, playing in a band). The people who bought it had a responsibility to keep that music alive. It's a shame they didn't. Some of that music is lost forever.

Yeah, I feel you. Some of my favorite tunes were lost. I've yet to find them somewhere else.

+1 give the internet archive your money guys. http://archive.org/donate/

torrents are a reasonable solution for sharing those kind of programs.

Not really; nothing guarantees that someone keeps seeding them forever.

Nothing guarantees that anything keeps serving files forever. BT at least distributes responsibility and allows anyone to easily keep the files hosted.

I've often wondered if Freenet, or a similar encrypted network file system would be a viable solution. This, of course, requires a significant number of computers to contribute full time.

What's wrong with BT? It can operate encrypted and has the DHT to address/discover content.

AFAIK Freenet is basically a cache with no incentive system, so content will expire. There are some cryptocurrency-oriented storage projects but they all seem to be in way over their heads.

I think the fundamental economics for a cryptocurrency approach don't lean towards preserving obscure things that don't interest many people. Storage cost is always going to be proportional to the amount of data being stored, but income is always going to be proportional to the number of people who want the data.

In Freenet content will expire unless it's accessed regularly. If you want to make sure your files are around, just poll them every other week (which may or may not be already supported by the software), which is a simple "proof of work" scheme: As long as you care, the files are reasonably safe to be around. When you (and everyone else) stops caring, they'll slowly disappear in favour of more popular stuff.

"Reasonable", not "absolutely infallible".

Unseeded torrents are pretty common, especially for less popular items.

In my experience, unseeded torrents are less common than Rapidshare links that have been removed by their user or taken down after being reported.

However, I've never gathered statistics on it, so this is purely anecdotal.

I'd expect a team like xda-developers to run a seed of their content; it's the best way to make sure it is still available.

the point is that a service like rapidshare doesn't cost the user any money (and instead, get ads). Running a torrent server is expensive, and require dedicated hardware too. You can't really seed from the webhost after all.

The user can use seedboxes, they're far from being as difficult to use as dedicated hardware. They sometimes have some free tier that I expect would be more than enough for a team like xda-developers (think 5GB). It's true that they wouldn't be able to earn money through this, though.

You can seed from regular webhosts - as long as it's a regular http query to a regular http server, not some temporary http query hidden behind several layers of interstitial ads for the premium account.

Even as an indie software developer, this makes me sad.

Rapidshare was the most responsive to copyright complaints out of all the filesharing sites, they took down links within 2 hours of being reported. But instead of nuking cracks to my software on Rapidshare immediately, it meant I let the Rapidshare links stay alive longer, because I knew I could turn them off whenever I wanted. I'd rather people uploaded cracks to RapidShare where I could see how popular / unpopular a link was & had control over when to remove it, than somewhere like MegaUpload that would deliberately take a long time to remove links.

I never saw evidence of piracy helping sales (always hurt sales) and I never used it for promotion, but I was more worried about cracks that came bundled with a virus, or that came bundled with a collection of illegal images. That stuff had to be nuked straight away for the protection of customers (and since much of the time, customers never understood that cracks don't come from the company that makes the software).

> (and since much of the time, customers never understood that cracks don't come from the company that makes the software).

I never saw that. Even when I was young, that was something obvious, and I never heard someone else mention that he beliefs cracks come from the company making the original software. Where is that coming from? Is that your impression because you get support requests for cracks?

Yup, I get some support requests where I have to explain to the customer that they never bought the software. They'll tell me the Photoshop Tutorial they downloaded my software from, inevitably with a link to a Rapidshare download. They're not looking at URLs and might not even understand they're downloading from a different website to the tutorial. Some have told me they got my software from "a Photoshop Tutorial that you advertised your software on". Ugh.

It's worth noting that while I have customers of all ages, many are older / elderly (many in their late 60s and a few in their 80s & 90s). They're not the most tech savvy, they don't understand the cracking scene & some need a lot of time-consuming handholding. Often wonderful & friendly folks, but they don't grok computers the same way the usual Hacker News reader will.

Wow dude, props for referring to people who crack your software as 'customers' and going through the trouble of protecting them. Most companies don't even realize that things like this can actually hurt their image.

Can you provide some info about the way piracy hurt sales - like - when a crack appears for new version, suddenly sales plummet until new version is out?

Torrentfreak has some good editorializing and context around this shutdown:


"Hoping to clear up its image the company made tremendous efforts to cooperate with copyright holders and limit copyright infringements. Among other things, the company adopted one of the most restrictive sharing policies while (re)branding itself as a personal cloud storage service.

"The anti-piracy measures seemed to work, but as a result RapidShare’s visitor numbers plunged. The dwindling revenues eventually cost most of RapidShare’s employees their jobs."

I don't see how this could have ever ended any other way.

RapidShare was clearly only popular in the first place because of piracy. Once they started restricting that they became just another Dropbox/OneDrive/Google Drive competitor.

Nah. As mentioned before, they were a great place to store all manner of random files. During their golden age, having a place to put random "stuff", especially large files, was a killer feature.

The problem was their new model completely precluded sharing of any kind. Imagine Drive or Dropbox, but without the ability to give links to your files, and you can see how useless the service became. You don't out-dropbox Dropbox.

As usual, lawyers ruin everything.

Lawyers didn't really ruin this, RapidShare banking on piracy to sustain their business model ruined their business.

Well piracy wouldn't have been a problem if it weren't for the lawyers.

Lawyers neither make nor enforce the laws. If you want to blame someone, blame the lawmakers...

It worked for YouTube. They got their start with pirated content and pivoted quite successfully.

>They got their start with pirated content and pivoted quite successfully.

By being bought by Google, then having Google spend 100s of millions of dollars defending YouTube in court.

How was Rapidshare supposed to replicate that feat?

Well a file sharing platform got popular due to file sharing taking place, sort of obvious isn't it. Then those who built an industry out of controlling distribution who are threatened by these new ways use their acquired power to shut down the threat by claiming copyright infringement, stuttering history (see 17th century french button makers, 19th century theatrophone, and so on).

Thing is sharing is a human trait, a trait required to live in a social group. The internet is about sharing and either the copyright industry will adapt/disappear or the internet will disappear (probable eaten alive by fecesbookians and politicians).

Rapidshare died because the market moved on. "File hosting services" like rapidshare have been replaced by cutthroat "cyberlockers" like Keep2share and rapidgator.

The most successful cyberlockers do what Rapidshare decided not to: pay uploaders, even those who share illegally. And also pay linking sites through referral schemes far more resilient legally. They aren't trying to appease anyone not either a customer or a very active uploader. Working with copyright owners beyond base legal requirements (DMCA et al) isn't the business plan anymore. Getting into bed with copyright owners was megaupload's and rapidshare's first mistake. The new plan is to make as much money is possible then abandon the ship the moment the MPAA looks their way.

Filesharers are ok with this. They purchase monthly subscriptions in full knowledge that the service might disappear any day. They aren't looking for a long term relationship anymore. The blind panic resulting from the megaupload raid ended that expectation.

I partly disagree with this. It's true that there is a crowd of uploaders who do it for profit, but Putlocker/Firedrive discontinued their affiliate system in 2012 and continued to be one of the most popular file hosts (yes, they closed down now but that's because they operated in the uk and had issues). Zippyshare also remains very popular when it doesn't pay uploaders either. Vkontakte is another popular file sharing site in addition to 4shared (but 4shared recently started being very strict to copyrighted files).

Argubly one could argue that megaupload was mainly used by non-profit uploaders. It gained popularity with affiliates but afterwards the average person and non-profit uploaders used the website to upload files more than the affiliate users. I believe you had to become a premium member to actually gain access to the rewards feature.

Rapidshare died because not only did they combat copyrighted files, they also blocked the ability to share legit files. As pointed out in the comments elsewhere in this thread, they tried to out-Dropbox Dropbox.

edit: also, Mediafire before they went all-cloud had no affiliate system and is very popular. And look at Mega.co.nz, a very popular website which is used for movies etc.

what's the difference betwwen a "cyberlocker" and a "file hosting service" ?

A hosting service pretends to be a dropbox-style service for backing up and sharing important files. A cyberlocker abandons the pretense, all but calling for people to share files they don't own in exchange for money.

For me, the line is when you start paying website that host links to files on your service (referrals) or when you reward known pirates even after, literally, hundreds of valid takedown notices against their files.

So, that's a business that shuts down gracefully. They clearly identify their last date, and, continue to serve a useful function (for their customers, at least) right up until that date. They even continue to take new customer business right up to 30 days prior to their last day of business.

"Kindly note that RapidShare will stop the active service on March 31st, 2015. Extensions of STANDARD PLUS and PREMIUM will be possible until February 28th, 2015."

This isn't exactly a graceful shutdown. The majority of their files were already deleted in the past on very short notice. I have no idea who still used or trusted their service.

Well they're Swiss after all ;).

I've interviewed an ex rapidshare employee some time ago. Might have been just one disgruntled ex employee, but they told me the CEO wouldn't hand out access to the servers to anyone and insisted on keep doing that himself and other stuff.

They weren't competent though, so maybe he just didn't want to give that employee access. I asked them what they did at Rapidshare and the only answer I got was "multicore stuff" (sic).

However it seemed inviteable, Rapidshare tried to rebrand to a personal cloud storage provider without providing the features needed to be one while still cracking down on piracy. Maybe they should have pulled a dotcom, shut rapidshare down and announce rapid. And then stick to the old business model.

They also refused to change their name. The founder wouldn't rebrand. They had a decent chance, if you think about it: storage know-how, a bunch of servers, some good techies, and - which could have been the killer - a Swiss location with Swiss data privacy laws, right in the Snowden era. Forget Dropbox and google drive and amazon with the NSA tapping into them here and wherever. Could have been a great selling point. But the owner couldn't face 'swissshare' or 'swissbox' or something else... had to keep Rapidshare with all that implied.

Rapidshare shafted their paid users long ago (announcing the deletion of files on short notice) then they came back with a business model that was not exactly well thought-out.

I was doing research on anti-piracy, torrent kills all the file sharing portal more than government. File share portals comes directly under law of punishment for hosting and sharing infringed content. Torrent is a general public, mass, there could be many ways to protect innocence against strict law. Hoping that rapidshare made enough money, may try to leave the shit off and spend their time on vocation.

These all hall of fame, rise and fall of empire, giving way innovations and technologies.

Rapidshare links have continuously died whether they were legit or not for a long while. Sure, a lot of it was illegitimate, but people simply moved on.

I like the "187,864 users trusted rapidshare in the last hour" in the bottom left corner of the announcement...nice touch lol

Anyone remember those hard to figure out capchas Rapidshare had? specially the cats.


I came across this thread whilst searching for info on File Hosting and there's certainly a lot of good information here.

I'm writing an app that uploads small documents to public file hosting sites (e.g. via REST-HTTP Post) so that others can download them again, preferably via simple HTTP GET.

Rather than coding to a particular API for each and every Hosting site, are there any public code libraries (preferably C++ or C#) that do this already presenting a common API across a number of different supported hosting sites?

Ideally I'd be looking for an Apache/MIT license code rather than GNU.

Is anyone else here surprised that Rapidshare is still even a thing and lasted this long in the face of Mediashare, Megaupload, Zippyshare and all those other sites? I haven't seen a Rapidshare link shared in a very long time.

I remember once upon a time if you downloaded leaked music or even software, then Rapidshare was the go to site for that kind of thing. Funny how things change.

For me the service to use was eDonkey/eMule. You could find anything there.

Nowadays it's mostly torrents.

Reminds me of Xoom [1]. It's very hard to pivot a legit business when you're basically know as the best place to download pirated software/music/games.

[1] -http://web.archive.org/web/19990515000000*/http://xoom.com/h...

I completely forgot about RapidShare till I saw this, I'm probably not the only one...

LOL me too. I have switched to torrent since megaupload was banned.

imo they failed to adopt to the Cloud Model . one interesting company which I think pivoted form being a similar site to cloud/backup space is Mediafire


It actually happened later than I would have thought. Rapidshare built their entire brand around warez uploading and piracy, so when they changed their concept to please anti-pirate organizations, it was just a matter of time.

I'm surprised they never adopted to the cloud model of their competitors such as Dropbox, surely they would of had the resources (at least the hardware) to compete. Such a shame.

RapidShare was my childhood hero!

I think appearance of google drive/dropbox is the main reason of this. People easily share data with them.

I remember it being the pirate king in the old days. Won't miss it much now.

Good, their new premium features shut out large treasures of content on the web.

goodnight sweet prince/and flights of angels sing thee to thy rest

Many memories of waiting for their little countdown timer to finish so I could click the "Free download" link, switching to another tab during the countdown, and then forgetting to come back in time before the download link became stale and having to do it all over again.

Back to BBSs?

man I had the most amazing time with Rapidshare during the 2007~2009 era. I remember being in an all you can eat candy store. Same with megaupload. Stuff you couldn't find anywhere were popping up, old vintage rare tv shows, games, magazines. The monetary incentive provided an explosion of content you couldn't get elsewhere.

I will really miss the golden era of filehosting services.

There should be a public list of cool stuff on RapidShare. That way, people can sift through all the pr0n/Disney movies and start archiving this stuff in a distributed sense. That way, the artifacts aren't lost forever.

There was load of blog sites which kept posting up new stuff with links back to Rapidshare in the footer, but older page just ended up have dead links as the content got deleted.

Google used to be able to index Rapidshare so you could just search for files on via Google

We got a glimpse of what life would be like with free access to culture. I hope to see such a rich community again soon.

Three words. Private torrent trackers.

The content on trackers drops off sharply with popularity. That was what made file-hosting services special. You could find something only three people cared about in the past year.

That's why I said Private torrent trackers, and not public torrent trackers.

We could assume that Rapidshare got shut down because of evil copyright blah blah...

Or maybe they just couldn't compete with Dropbox et al.

Well it's both. Copyright crap eliminates the market they were in. Then they were forced to compete in a different market with established players (e.g Dropbox)

To me Rapidshare was a very shady place to be full of warez, never visited, never cared. good riddance

It's not that hard to create a Tor hidden service, locally or on a VPS or hosted server. And using OnionShare <https://onionshare.org/> it's trivial.

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