The Simplest And Cheapest Free Web Hosting Services

Dear Lifehacker,

I have a single HTML file that I would like to post online. I don't need scripts or web editors or any of that. What is the best (and cheapest) way to post a plain, non-dynamic web page?

I see plenty of services for hosting files, but haven't recalled one that could host a web site (.html). I would really appreciate your help.

Thanks,

Needing A Web Site

Dear Needing,

Remember back in the dinosaur days when everyone wanted a website? Then, with an asteroid-like fury, blogs came with a blazing wrath, eliminating all the free website providers — they just weren't cool enough to survive. Fortunately, it's not too hard to find some decent free web hosting providers and and clever hacks to do the trick today. We've rounded up some options for you below.

Find A Free Web Hosting Site

It's been a long time since Geocities has been around. Geocities may not be around anymore, but that doesn't mean there aren't options to host a free and simple web site. Web hosting site FreeWebs morphed into Webs.com. The free package on Webs.com offers 40MB of space, 100 MB of bandwidth, five form submissions, a subdomain and web-based and email-based file uploading. They have a template for creating sites, or if you like a little more control, the more familiar file-like structure for you to interact with.

We also found ad-free Weebly, another promising free web hosting service. Weebly offers a free address URL, drag-and-drop widgets and customised templates to create your website simply if you don't know any code. If you do, there's a built-in HTML editor with a preview function so you can code to your heart's content. Think Tumblr meets Webs.com — unlike a traditional web hosting service, there's no information on the space and bandwidth you receive.

If you already have a domain name, you might want to check out Microsoft Office Live Small Business, which offers free web hosting. For zero dollars, you get free domain hosting, 500 MB of space and 100 email accounts. The service is free for up to one year and after that, you'll need to pay $US15 per year.

Use Dropbox's Public Folder

There are tons of clever tricks to use file-syncing service Dropbox, but here we're using it to host an HTML file from the public folder. You'll need a Dropbox account if you don't have one.

Drop the static HTML file(s) into your Public folder, right-click the homepage file on your computer and grab the public URL. If you want to share one page, you're done. If you want to host a site, that URL will now be your website's homepage.

If you understand HTML, it's easy to host a full, static website on Dropbox without grabbing all the public URLs for each file. In order to do employ this hack, use a backslash to have the server fill in the domain and subfolder in your link code. The result will have your HTML link code look like <a href="/secondpage.html"> instead of <a href="http:// http://dl.dropbox.com/u/######/secondpage.html">. If you haven't guessed it, ###### refers to your unique Dropbox public URL number.

Love,

Lifehacker

P.S. We'd love to hear what your favourite web hosting solutions are. Let us know in the comments below!


Comments

    Just on the (forward) slash issues, here is how it works:

    If you are on a page at dropbox.com/user/##/page3.html

    And your link looks like:
    href="/page5.html" It will go to dropbox.com/page5.html
    href="page5.html" It will go to dropbox.com/user/##/page5.html
    href="../page5.html" It will go to dropbox.com/user/page5.html
    href="more/page5.html" It will go to dropbox.com/user/##/more/page5.html

    Hope this clears it up.

    Get a friend who has a web site and offer to buy him a beer to host your page.

    If you want to use your own domain, and avoid ads, I'll put in a plug for NearlyFreeSpeech - they have a pay-what-you-use model at 1 cent per MB per month storage and $1 per GB bandwidth. It doesn't stack up as well for large, high traffic sites, but for small sites a couple of dollars can literally last years.

    http://sites.google.com/

    dropbox use S3, if really datas are stored/accessed *directly* on S3 servers dropbox will be happy to receive bills in case of high traffic ^^but i can understand of course webpages normally are tiny ;)

    I recommend http://www.inethost4u.com for fast blooging & WordPress hosting. This host is really good for WordPress & other CMS.
    They have good shared & reseller packages with unlimited bandwidth.

    Ye..web.com is a good free hosting service. I used to host on geocities/fortune hosting before but they are no more offering this service.

    Pain often drives people crazy and forces them to do stupid thinks! Don’t let pain rule your life! That's what i want to say here.

    For quality/affordable WordPress hosting (or any dynamic php site for that matter) I can recommend Scrybes. Whilst not free they are reasonably priced and definitely worth a look - I always think you get what you pay for where hosting is concerned anyway.

    I go with Typical Hosting i used the Wordpress Auto install and it worked a charm and also they help me with anything and i mean anything, just send them a message and they will do whatever they can to help even if it is web development,

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