Updated: 11/06/2021 by Computer Hope
Uploading from a laptop to the Internet.

Sometimes abbreviated as UL or U/L, upload is sending a file to another computer through a modem or network.

How is a file uploaded?

The most common method of uploading a file to another computer or server with FTP. When using an online service with no FTP support (e.g., social networking service like Facebook), a file is uploaded through the browser on the service's website. Other methods of uploading a file include file sharing on a network (e.g., Telnet, SSH (secure shell), and P2P) and saving a file to the cloud.

Copying vs. uploading

Many new computer users inappropriately refer to copying or moving files as uploading. When copying a file from your computer to another drive or folder on the same computer, you're copying that file and not uploading the file. If you're sending a file to a different computer from your computer, you're uploading the file.

Upload vs. download

Uploading is sending information from your computer to another computer or server. Downloading is receiving information from another computer or server. When browsing the Internet, you're mostly downloading information. For example, when viewing this page, your computer needed to download the text and pictures shown on this page. You'd need to upload when sharing pictures or videos, playing online games, or participating in an online video call.

Why would I need a fast upload speed?

For users who only browse the Internet, read e-mails, and watch videos the upload speeds is not as important as the download. However, if you're sending a lot of information to the Internet and have a slow upload speed, you'll encounter problems.

When you'll want a fast upload speed

Today, most broadband connections (even those with slower upload speeds) can meet most upload requirements. However, as more data is being uploaded, you'll need a faster upload speed. In other words, a broadband connection may have no problems with uploading lower-quality video but may have issues if the quality is increased (which requires more data). The following is a list of examples when you'll begin to notice if your upload speed is not fast enough.

What is a good upload speed?

Speeds of 5 Mbps or faster is a good upload speed that lets you play games and do video calls.

Why is my upload slower than my download?

Most broadband connections are asymmetrical, which means the upload and download speed is never the same. These speed differences are by design and how most broadband technologies (e.g., Cable or DSL (digital subscriber line)) work. In contrast, symmetrical broadband connection (e.g., fiber) has the same upload and download speed.

Computer acronyms, Data transfer, Download, Internet terms, Modem terms, Network terms, Push, Put, UL, Uplink, Upload speed, Upstream