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How-To Share Files Easily Using Dropbox Public Links

Public Dropbox Download LinksSharing pictures and files is usually pretty simple with email and other technologies like drop.io. But what if the file is HUGE like over a gig or if the person you want to share the file with isn’t exactly geeky?? Well, I have a great solution for you today using DROPBOX! The great thing about using this tip is your end users don’t need to do anything but click a link you send them. Yup. They don’t even need to register for a Dropbox account. Now that sounds groovy ehh! Lets get started.

Step 1 – Get a Dropbox if you don’t have one

Take a look at this article where I talk about what Dropbox is and How-To get started. The registration is super simple so you can also just click this link to get rolling with an account.

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Step 2 – Uploading Files

Once you get the Dropbox folder on your computer, go ahead and copy the files you want to share into the Public folder in your Dropbox folder. Make sure you put them in the Public folder so that you can copy a public download link. Depending on the size of the files, you might need to wait awhile for Dropbox to sync them up to the internet. Just wait for the Green checkbox to appear then you know it’s ready to share.

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Step 3 – Getting A Public Download Link

You have two options to grab the Public link to the file.  The first and easiest method is to just Right-Click the file from Windows Explorer, Click Dropbox inside the Context menu and Click Copy Public Link.

The second method is more work but also works.  Just goto the Dropbox website and log in. Locate the file and Click the Small Arrow on its right side and Click Copy Public Link. A small new window will show up displaying the link to the file, you’d probably want to go ahead and click the Copy To Clipboard button afterwards so that you have the link ready.

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Step 4 – Share Your Link

Your file is now public and open for anyone to download. Anyone you send the link to will be able to download / view the file. Simple, clean and FREE!

Do you have a simple tip for sharing files? Drop a note in the comments and perhaps we will write it up for the groovy community!

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12 Responses to How-To Share Files Easily Using Dropbox Public Links

  1. Brickmonkey August 12, 2010 at 8:17 am #

    As a new user to dropbox (yeah yeah a bit slow on the uptake) I must say I really do like this service. Makes using files on multiple devices very easy and a great backup service to boot.

    • MrGroove August 12, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

      Exactly. The thing I like about Dropbox is 1: It’s simple 2: It focuses on 1 thing – File Sync and Distribution 3: It’s simple. 🙂

  2. Eddie October 29, 2010 at 10:43 pm #

    I have a problem. When I send the Dropbox link in an e-mail and the recipient is using Outlook, they can only COPY or OPEN the link. There is no “save as” option when you right-click. So there is no way to save the file from Outlook. Anyone else run into this issue and have a remedy?

    • MrGroove October 30, 2010 at 12:39 pm #

      Hi Eddie,

      They should just cut and paste the link into their browser – IE or Firefox etc… and from there they should prompted to save the file.

      • Eddie October 30, 2010 at 4:03 pm #

        Thanks for the suggestion. Unfortunately it doesn’t work with the media files we’re working with. If you paste the URL of an mp3 in the browser it just starts playing the file.

        • Dominik February 6, 2011 at 2:50 am #

          Hey Eddie,
          when using Firefox just go to Extras -> Options -> Applications and select the download option for the MPEG Layer 3 file extensions.

  3. Jiyaad December 17, 2011 at 10:07 am #

    Hi Eddie,

    If you’re using IE then simply edit the link by adding “?dl=1” at the end of it – this will force a download rather than having the file played. For example:

    Original Link
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/123456789/test.mp3

    Edited Link
    https://dl.dropbox.com/u/123456789/test.mp3?dl=1

    Cheers

  4. best browser January 2, 2012 at 2:47 am #

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  5. John November 17, 2012 at 8:50 am #

    Previously, just yesterday in fact, I was able in Dropbox to get a URL link to a PowerPoint file, and when I put that URL into a browser’s address it brought up the contents of the file. But when I tried to get a link to a different PPt file today, I just get a URL only links me to a download window, and the download then requires the PowerPoint application to open. Can I bypass the download as i did previously?

    • Austin Krause November 19, 2012 at 5:43 pm #

      What browser are you attempting this with? I just tested it out using Google Chrome and Dropbox was able to preview my powerpoint presentation, although many of the effects were missing the main content was there.

  6. ANTHONY BRIAN LONG March 5, 2013 at 4:20 am #

    COPIED FILES TO DROPBOX AND THEY WERE UPLOADED, SENT A LINK BY EMAIL BUT WHEN MY FRIEND TRID TO OPEN IT IT SAID FILE BLOCKED, CHECKED FILE BEFORE SENDING LINK WAS IN BLUE BUT BLACK WHEN HE GOT IT, MY FRIEND SENT ME LINKS AND NO PROBLEM OPENING AND SAVING THEM USE OUTLOOK 2003.

    Regards

    Anthony

  7. Lale September 21, 2014 at 12:28 am #

    my dropbox doesnot have public sharing.What should I do to share my file with public?Is there any other ways?

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