Wait long enough and someone comes up with a better way to do something useful for free. Don’t like paying Microsoft for Office? Use Apple’s own Pages, Numbers, and Keynote instead. Cross platform between Mac, iPhone, and iPad, and free. What’s not to like?
What if you want to send some files to someone else? What’s the best way? Email attachments are common and sneaker net isn’t exactly dead (yet) but the steps for burning a DVD are numerous. How about cloud services? Again, there are steps, security issues, and complicated setup.
Mozilla, the company behind the once popular Firefox browser, came up with a free and easy way to send very large files to anyone and baked in some hefty security with the new Firefox Send and how it works could not be much simpler. For now, you’ll need to use Firefox to send and receive the file.
Click Here in the most recent version of Firefox. This is what you get.
Drag and drop a folder of files or a large file, or, in the alternative, click the Select button to encrypt and upload a file. The encryption occurs on your Mac and the file is then uploaded to Mozilla’s Send servers to be downloaded.
It can take a few minutes to encrypt and upload the file you select; depending upon the file’s size (up to 1GB), but the process is automatic. When it’s done Firefox gives you a link which you can send to whomever.
Mozilla wants you to use Firefox from end-to-end. Just paste the link into Firefox and the download begins. Files can be set to expire after a single download which makes the whole process, including encryption, relatively secure for 24 hours and a better option than the convoluted email attachment method.
What happens if you put the Send link into Safari?
Obviously, Mozilla wants everyone to use Firefox, but the new Send feature is a good, sticky, and useful way to ensure Firefox stays on your Mac.
Once the download link is dropped into Firefox, simply click the big blue Download button and the file is downloaded to your Mac or PC and unencrypted, ready to use.
It’s all free and very easy to setup and use, so nothing to not like. Is it perfect security? Nope. But nothing is, and there are dozens of similar but slightly more convoluted methods to share files between users and devices.
Last week I read a story about someone sharing a photo via iPhone’s AirDrop to another iPhone user in a different airplane at 35,000 feet (not sure how that’s done with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, but interesting nonetheless). Admittedly, I’ve never tried to use AirDrop that far away but it opens up possibilities. As for Firefox Send, it’s another good reason to keep Firefox on my Mac. Until Apple does the same thing with iCloud and Safari.