How To Use DropBox As a Web Host

Dropbox is very famous cloud storage service and it’s was getting extremely popular in past few years. It’s letting you to sync your file in to online cloud, so you can access them from anywhere in the globe as long as you have an active internet connection.

It’s giving you a file syncing client which is automating entire file uploading process. Uploaded files could be shared among anyone using its sharing functions. Due to this simplicity it attracted lots of non-techy computer users.

These advanced sharing functionality are not only for non-techy people. Being a webmaster you can utilize the space in Dropbox as an extension to your webhost. This might sounds little funny, but it’s extremely possible, reliable and flexible solution.

How to Use Dropbox as a Web Host?

Initial you have to move all your files to Dropbox public folder. Then file syncing client will automatically upload them to cloud storage. Keep your folder structure well organized and to be on the safe side don’t include space in file names.

Ex: sample_image.jpg

Here comes the beauty of Dropbox public folder. Once you upload files to Dropbox public folder it’s automatically creating public link. The uniqueness in this public link is it’s directly letting you to access the file without going through a download page. Simply this is a “Direct link” to your file. This is exactly what you need from a web host.


Let’s say you need to include an image in your blog post. There you have to use <img> tag. Normally you are hosting your images in your server and most of the cases you have very limited space.

Here is how to use the Dropbox as an extension in that case.

  • Move the image file in to Dropbox public folder.
  • Right click on it -> Dropbox -> Copy public link
  • Now you have the image public link in the clipboard.
  • Create the image tag in the blog post as below.
  • It’s simple as that! Now your image tag will be properly displayed in the browser.
  • Of course you can do the same thing for any file type as long as Dropbox is giving you direct link to the content.

Answer to next big question, YES, you can host your whole website in the Dropbox, yet it’s not recommended. Why when you are hosting your content in a web server such as Apace it’s giving you lots of background service. You have pretty URL up here as a result of those services.

Best way to use Dropbox for web hosting is as an extension to existing space not as a replacement.

Advantages of Dropbox Hosting

Expandability and Reliability

Dropbox is giving you free 2GB, yet you can expand it up to 16GB for free by just introducing new people to Dropbox. So this will give you huge space for you to host your web content. Especially this will be a great idea for multimedia content since they consume lots of hard disk space.

Further, Dropbox is very reliable server. I was using it for years and I have never seen it down. Therefore you can expect good uptime from Dropbox as well.

Easy File Modification

Just think you have an image in your web server and you need to do a modification. What you should do is download the file from web server, edit it and re upload it overwriting previous file, too many steps to follow.

If you were using Dropbox as your image host, all you have to do is open the image which is right there in your Dropbox public folder, edit it using any application you need and simple save it. Changes will be reflected in the website once the file gets updated in online cloud.

This is applicable for video, document or any file type. There is no need to download and re-upload since file is right there in your local hard drive.


Serious stuff, but in some cases you need SSL enabled web host to get URL with HTTPS. Sad part you have to pay extra to get this from your hosting service provider. If your requirement is not so serious there is tweak in Dropbox.

Let’s say you need image with https:// URL, may be for Facebook welcome page. All you have to do is move the image to Dropbox public folder, get the public URL and simply change its http:// to https://. Simple solution but works like magic.

Ex: Here is a image I hosted in my Dropbox public folder. I just change http:// to https:// and it’s just working.

Warning: Be careful when you handling files in Dropbox after you include them in live web pages. If you remove them or alter file names in local Dropbox folder, public URL will give you “404” error. Keep your folder structure in “public” folder clean and clear to avoid dead URLs.

Hope you got to explore another dimension of Dropbox which will give you lots of benefits for zero $$. If you have any further question about this drop a comment down here. I’m here to help you.

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About The Author

The Guest post is written by Malinda Alahakoon of Notesofgenius



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BloggingeHow | Making Blogging Simpler: How To Use DropBox As a Web Host
How To Use DropBox As a Web Host
BloggingeHow | Making Blogging Simpler
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