My desires for sharing something like credentials are all over the place:
- End-to-end encrypted is a must, no way around it; the options for less-than-encrypted is a lot larger and well-served by e.g. my employer.
- Self-hostable because the history of this app segment revolves around shutdowns. I can spin up a new Ansible role for most containerized things in a blink.
- Command-line interface since I’m inclined to make helper scripts for most workflows.
- Easy to use for the receiver because not everybody in my life can install something on the command line, making the web the optimal delivery mechanism.
- Expiring uploads because an out-of-band send shouldn’t exist long-term and because there’s better options for perpetual file hosting.
Firefox Send was fantastic. Mozilla killed it off due to moderation issues, and likely because they’re unable to ship and maintain products that aren’t Firefox itself these days. It sets the tone for the rest of these services because it leveled up the space. I miss it.
Wormhole.app is the spiritual successor of Firefox Send but lacks a command-line interface and is not open source. Normally I’m not one to bemoan something like this being closed source and free but I’d much rather pay for a service than watch yet another thing shut down.
magic-wormhole is a great peer-to-peer-only command-line option, and I often use it to send files between my own machines and servers, but it requires both sides be online at the same time and requires installing it on the device. Wormhole.app – almost certainly stealing the name from this one – also does peer to peer through WebRTC.
FileSend by Standard Notes works well, is self-hostable, but has a rather limited scope of impact and community around it, eliminating any possible extension into the command-line world. Difficult to host publicly without allowing anonymous uploads.
Bitwarden Send is self-hostable, most easily via Vaultwarden which is what I use, supports large file sizes, has a decent command-line integration, and has a great option for text-only sends as well. The biggest issue is interface: authenticating into a Bitwarden instance via master password has to happen before you can send the files, which adds overhead to working with it both on the command line and web/clients.
Send (with many hosted instances) is a fork of the defunct Firefox Send codebase. It is also difficult to host without allowing anonymous uploads.
ffsend by the same author is a capable command line interface, and supports using Basic Auth in front of the instance. In my testing, requiring auth on
/api/ws is enough to prevent anonymous upload but still allow downloading.
For my personal use, I went with self-hosting Send on a cheap VPS that I’ve already got a few services running on.
Were I picking something for sharing within a team/family/company I’d probably go with Bitwarden, since it’s so extensible and likely a good choice for general password storage/sharing as well.
I’ll probably recommend Wormhole.app for one-off sends from others as long as it exists. Hopefully that’s for a little bit longer than Firefox’s attempt lasted.