There’s a website currently growing in popularity that might be able to find that song you are looking for without installing a p2p client. This website is called FilesTube.
As many are aware, there are places one can use to search for a file hosted on sites like Rapidshare and MegaUpload. There are also ways of using Google to search for loose media files hosted on web spaces. Still, there hasn’t been a unifying way of finding these files – that is, until now.
FilesTube is a website that crawls the Internet for content hosted on generic file hosts and various file hosting services like RapidShare. It’s certainly no small website and it seems to be growing. For some who are familiar with p2p clients like LimeWire, eMule or BitTorrent, it may be just another file-sharing tool that might be useful for finding the odd file that doesn’t seem to be found anywhere else. For those who are looking for an easier way to find files though, it may become the easiest way of obtaining files.
In short, it may very well be the MiniNova of direct downloading (since the files are not hosted on the site itself, but they do link to files in an automated way) We were certainly interested in this new development. So we tested the site ourselves to see if it was too good to be true. A few searches later, aside from a few garbage files, it was quite easy to find what you are looking for. For now, you have to be rather specific on what you are looking for to filter out unnecessary files, but otherwise, it seems to be a legitimate way of obtaining what you are looking for.
So, impressed by the initial test run, we interviewed Arkadiusz Senko, the CEO of FilesTube to learn more. Initially, we thought FilesTube hosted the files, but obviously, they don’t.
ZeroPaid: Who are you? What is FilesTube and how is it different from other methods of p2p today like LimeWire, BitTorrent and RapidShare?
Arkadiusz Senko: We are “Red Sky LLC” company with a residence in Poland. FilesTube is one of many websites currently developed by us. FilesTube is not [a] hosting platform but [rather] [a] search engine, similar to [...] Google. Like other search engines[,] it has its own web crawler system which is searching for public media on the Internet. Biggest difference from [the] other search engines like [...] Google is that FilesTube concentrates only on searching for [...] media.
For the person that would like to use our website[, the way] FilesTube works could be described as [the] follow[ing]: user specifies what he wants to find and then we present him search results found on the net in a clear and friendly way.
ZP: When I’m looking at the site, I’m reminded of a sort of derivative idea of RapidShare and MegaUpload. There was a recent court ruling against RapidShare (link). Is this a concern for you? Going on the same line of thinking, the site seems quite similar to that of YouTube. I am aware that broadcasters in different countries have sued YouTube in the past in spite of a DMCA policy in place. Are you concerned that there’ll be issues with rights holders?
Senko: We cannot say for sure that we won’t have any problems with law and we consider that they could occur in the future. But as [we said] earlier, we do not host any media on our servers, we only point to the media on the Internet. Still we are doing our best to provide only legal search results. In situation[s] that the media is illegal[,] most of
the time DMCA applies to [the] owner of [a] website that physically stores that file. For that reason[,] everyday we check for the files if they still exist. If [they are] not [legal], they are automatically and immediately deleted from our resources, so we don’t have many [copyright complaints].
ZP: Some people would say things like, “I already have BitTorrent for large files” or “I already have LimeWire for single songs” or even maybe, “I have been using RapidShare/MegaUpload for downloading” or “I use eMule for rare and old files”, what sort of benefits does a site like yours bring to users that current p2p methods don’t? Also, why would a p2p user switch to your service?
SenkoFilesTube grants [a] very fast way to gain access to [search] resources [on] the Internet, no [matter] if they are accessible through FTP, websites such as RapidShare, Megaupload or other public places. [A] very important benefit when using our site in comparison to [...] p2p network[s] is that the downloaded file is not being shared at the same moment, which saves user’s bandwidth. Our database of indexed multimedia is growing very fast and even if [a] user can’t find a file that he was searching for, our system of crawlers will be informed about this fact automatically and it will start looking for items matching criteria. Another thing is that the user can specify his email address where a notification will be [sent] right away after any matching search results [become] available.
Currently we are intensively working on improving our search engine to index more resources. At this moment we have more than 40 millions [...] items in our database. In [the] near future[,] we are planning to add [a] feature of searching in p2p network[s]. Our goal is to allow [users] to find in FilesTube any multimedia which could be accessed through the Internet. Google has dominated [the] area which covers search[ing] websites containing information but we think that [a lot can be done in multimedia searching].
ZP: I remember when MiniNova having problems as they grew in size mainly because of the influx in traffic. If you’re site continues to grow, will it possibly run into problems like MiniNova or have you found ways to prevent things like downtime as a result of site upgrades?
Senko: We’ve also had [...] problems[, at first] with [...] very fast growing traffic. It was resolved by [the] rewriting and optimization of source code of FilesTube ([today,] FilesTube [contains] more than 100 000 lines of code and this amount is still increasing!) and by adding new hardware resources. FilesTube was developed with a keynote of full scalability. At this moment our servers are able to maintain at least 3 times [the current] traffic than the one we [have] now, which exceeds 5 million unique users per month and is growing fast. All performance problems are maintained if any risk of decrease in quality of provided services is possible. We know that there are big chances that we will cross paths with many more performance problems, but we will do everything in our [power] to give FilesTube users [a] fast and easy to use search engine.
ZeroPaid would like to thank Senko for taking the time to answer some questions.
It is certainly an interesting development. Will it be this kind of site that’ll be the next revolution in p2p? It’s hard to say, but this site clearly has a shot at doing so.