has anybody tried using this new service from the fine people that bought us archive.org and the wayback machine.
the service is basically used to spread the content of sites that include http://freecache.org/http://your.site/yourfile into the url of content. the first time it is downloaded freecache downloads the content to a proxy server and it is then spread out to many proxy servers all over the globe. people can now download the file off the proxy which should be closer and faster then from your site. this should speed up downloads of larger files and reduce stress on popular files.
seems like a very neat idea to me and i can see this being used alot more in the future. shame the service is still a little unstable at the moment but it is still a beta.
SourceWhy not Squid or mod_proxy?
Both Squid and mod_proxy are great for reducing the load on web servers, and we encourage everybody to use them. The disadvantage of these caching proxies are that they only work "vertically", i.e., they reduce the bandwidth downstream from the originating web site to the users' browsers. That web site still gets 1 download per (non-cascading) proxy. The FreeCache system works more "horizontally", i.e., FreeCaches fill themselves up from neighboring FreeCaches if at all possible. Hence, the load on the originating web site is much lower. FreeCache and caching proxies are complementary technologies. Both can be used to reduce the impact on web sites.
FreeCache is a demand-driven, distributed caching system. Cooperating caches exchange files without burdening the original site too much.
Why not BitTorrent?
BitTorrent is good and similar to FreeCache in that it balances download "horizontically". BitTorrent uses other BitTorrent clients for this balancing; these clients often become un-available after a particular file is not popular anymore. The FreeCache system utilizes permanent FreeCaches that don't go away (although particular files get flushed out after a while). Unlike BitTorrent, the FreeCache system is transparent to the end-user. No new client or server software is required, and the files do not need to be converted. To offer a file via the FreeCache system, all you need to do is prefix the URL with http://freecache.org/
What files are being served by FreeCache?
FreeCache can only serve files that are on a web site. If the link to a file on that web site goes away, so will the file in the FreeCaches. Also, there is a minimum size requirement. We don't bother with files smaller than 5MB, as the saved bandwidth does not outweight the protocol overhead in those cases.
What's a good download manager?
We like wget, because you can tell it to play nice and go slow. It's highly configurable and very powerful. Wget runs on all Unix platforms (incl. Mac OS X), and it comes standard with Cygwin on Windows. If you prefer something graphical, Mozilla's built-in download manager works fine.