How to Share Videos – How I Shared My 780GB Video Collection

There are lots of opinions on how to share videos, but big videos and uncompressed videos present problems that are not adequately solved by traditional methods. But there is a way that is easy and painless. To find out more, read on.

Estimated reading time: 3.5 minutes

When my youngest daughter was born, I went down to our local Sony Store and bought a brand new high-definition Sony Handycam. At the time, it was the best home video recorder in the store and recorded stunning 1080i high definition to digital tape. Sony provided utility software that easily transferred the files from the tape to my computer via a high-performance IEEE 1394 firewire cable. Now I have all our family memories – childbirths, first steps, vacations, birthdays, Christmases, holidays, children’s school performances, piano recitals, hockey games, and deceased parents – all in beautiful high definition. The problem is – these wonderful high-definition videos are HUGE. Each tape is an average of 11 GBs and the 71 tapes that I have, consume 780 GBs of storage!  If I wanted to share videos like these, I was going to have to do some homework.

How to Share Videos – Option 1) Use Video Compression

We really wanted to share these memories with overseas relatives, but let’s face it, to share videos this large would not be easy. The first thing I thought to try was to compress the files down to a smaller, more manageable size. I tried about a half dozen video compression utilities, however, they all presented me with 2 issues. First, it takes a long time to compress even one video. Even though I have a brand new computer with an SSD hard drive, 8 GBs of RAM, 64-bit OS, high-speed i5 processor, and a fast discrete AMD graphics card with 1 GB of video memory, each video takes hours to compress. If I did one video every night, it would take me over 2 months to compress them all.

To share videos, the second issue was that with the compression I was sacrificing video quality. The higher the rate of compression, the more quality was lost. You especially noticed the difference when there was motion in the frame. My kids have a lot of motion and that motion would be slightly blurred. It kind of negated all my effort to record these memories in beautiful high definition. In the end, the effort to compress the videos would be huge and the result would be a compromise in quality that I felt would not be worth the effort. So after quite a few hours of research on how to share videos down this path, I abandoned it.

How to Share Videos – Option 2) Use the Cloud

My second idea to share videos is to simply upload the videos to the cloud uncompressed. After doing the math, however, I quickly had to abandon this idea as well. We have pretty good high-speed internet at home. Our upload speed is 5 Mbps, download is 30 Mbps and we have 25 GBs of bandwidth per month. This is more than enough for our family web surfing, email, and occasional use of Kodi (don’t ask). The first issue is that according to this file transfer calculator, each video would take about 5 hours and 30 minutes to upload. I guess I would have to let it upload overnight. The big issue however is the bandwidth. I really only have enough unused bandwidth in my current high-speed plan to upload one video a month. If I uploaded one video a month to the cloud, it would take me over 5 years to upload them all. I know that people use the cloud to share videos and large files, but for all practical purposes using the cloud to share even a few uncompressed home videos is impossible. So the cloud is out.

The Better Way to Share Videos – Use FileFlex

All of this led me to the solution. I would use the brand new technology of file access virtualization found in FileFlex to share videos right from where they are stored. FileFlex allows remote access, sharing, and streaming of files and even an entire 780 GB folder from source locations. If I share my collection with someone, they will be using FileFlex to access those videos where I stored them. There are no uploads at all. The people that I share my collection with can simply stream any video I made in the last 5 years as they were recorded in mp4 format and they can download and watch the older MPEG-2 or m2t videos. (The older m2t videos need to be downloaded as this older format is not streamable.)  Once the software is installed and running, the actual sharing process takes only a couple of seconds. Sharing my 780 GB home video collection is now easy and painless. Problem solved.

How to Get Started

FileFlex is free to try. To check it out yourself, click here. To see me share my 780 GB collection of home videos, watch the video below.


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Tom Ward is the VP of Marketing for Qnext Corp. He is an expert in the technology industry with a history of achievement. Tom holds an MBA from the Schulich School of Business at York University.