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Ratio Sites

At some MP3 FTP sites, you're required to upload files before you get to download any. These are ratio sites. Usually, your uploads are measured in megabytes. That's so no joker can create a bunch of five-second MP3s to satisfy his upload requirements. A site with a 1:5 ratio lets you download 5MB for every 1MB you upload. Ratios range from a stingy 1:2 to as loose as 1:10. In most instances, the credits you get for uploading last only for that session. If you disconnect, you'll have to start over from scratch.

Some sites don't have ratios. Instead, you must go through umpteen porn sites to find the password. Even if the music is free, server space isn't, and so a lot of sites make sponsorship deals with other sites. And stockbrokers aren't likely to sponsor an FTP site; those sponsors are porn. The password deal is to ensure you click the banner ad to make the host site some money. Many FTP sites let you log on with a public password that only allows you to read a text file that tells you what hoops to jump through to get leech access, the ability to download all the songs at the site. Other sites give you the password only by email. A few, called anonymous FTP servers, let you in with no strings. These are as rare as hen's teeth.

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