File Sharing Search Engines


Docstoc combines file sharing and social networking. Members upload documents they agree to share. Documents are categorized broadly as legal, business, financial, technology, educational or creative. Other members also may tag or comment on the documents.

You may browse, display and e-mail documents without becoming a member. However, to upload and share, tag, comment on, or download documents, you must register with the site.

All documents, regardless of their original format, display in MacroMedia FlashPaper. Therefore, you must allow javascript to run at this site.

Files Tube

Files Tube is a search engine that queries information about documents and other media available via file-sharing servers. The documentation indicates it queries several file-sharing sources. However, the majority of our test queries produced results from one server - RapidShare.

When you query file-sharing search engines, you generally are searching the filename and any information about the file provided. You are not searching the contents of the file. Files available include avi, mp3, mpeg, mpg, rar, wma, wmv and zip. Of course, some of these formats may contain media, such as music, movies, games, audio books and books, once decompressed.

JD Supra

Founded by a lawyer, JD Supra "promotes the free exchange of information to benefit the legal community, legal consumers, the media and the general public." Legal professionals may register with the site to post court filings and other legal documents or articles. Once you post at least one document, you may also create a free profile. Others may search the documents and profiles for free. Documents are available for downloading in Word or PDF.

You may search documents by keyword, and then limit the retrieval by court, type of filing or subject matter.

Technical note: You must activate javascript to search this site. Free registration is required to display documents in full.


This search engine locates information about files shared through BitTorrent, a popular file-sharing service. What distinguishes it from similar services is its RSS feeds for new files added. You may monitor the addition of several file types, including anime, books, games, movies, music, pictures, software and television shows.

Warning: It's possible, and perhaps likely, that some queries will retrieve files with offensive material. It's almost certain you will retrieve works that infringe on the copyright holders rights.

Technical note: While you can search and retrieve information about available files, you cannot download them via the search engine. (This is generally true of any file-sharing search service.) BitTorrent files require additional client software, such as Azureus or Bittornado.


Scribd is an online library of documents on a vast array of topics. You may browse or search documents, groups or people (members) by keyword. Documents appear in many different formats, including Word, PDF, PowerPoint, and more.

Scribd Groups gives 2 or more members with similar interests a way to share and discuss documents or other information. You may make a group private or public.

I was able to search, browse and display documents without registering. However, uploading, downloading, and of course, joining a group requires registration.