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Posting Web Pages Free of Charge

By Jason Shpik
Posted Tuesday, June 15, 2004

It's called free Web hosting. You may find it's the fastest and cheapest way to get your message out there.

If you're one of the growing number of people who publishes Web pages or cobbles together Web sites, you've probably learned one lesson: You can't get enough space for your content. Because, let's face it, with Java, graphics, and multimedia content, even a small Web site can eat up megabytes of storage.

But getting that extra space can be difficult for several reasons. Sometimes you need a cheap place to hang your hat online. Maybe you can't afford full service from your Internet Service Provider (ISP). Or, maybe you need a way to mirror your Web site cheaply. There's a way to dolt that costs you nothing. It's called free Web hosting. Over the last couple of years, services that let you post Web pages free of charge have been springing up all across the World Wide Web.

Free Web hosting has a lot going for it. The most important aspect is the cost. How else can you get a place to dump your Web pages without paying a cent? A free hosting service is perfect for someone who can't afford a full-fledged Internet account or who accesses the Web using a public terminal or a FreeNet. Depending on the service you choose, you can get anywhere from 3 to 35 MB of storage space. Many ISPs don't offer that much. If they do, the extra space can get quite expensive.

Of course, there's the convenience of it all. You can do just about everything you need to with a free Web hosting service. Most give you access to an online HTML editor and to some sort of file management tool. While the latter allows you to delete or rename files, but generally little else, the HTML editors are quite useful. They range from a simple workspace into which you type your code and content, to editors that insert HTML tags with a mouse click, to fully-fledged graphical tools that let you build pages by pointing and clicking.

Best of all, transferring your files from your computer to any free hosting service is easy. Most have an interface for transferring files. Or, you can use good old-fashioned FTP to move your files around. There's no learning curve for experienced Web users. You simply do as you have always done.

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