Free Web Operating Systems (WebOS)

Free WebOSes


Free Web Operating Systems (WebOS)

These free web-based operating systems allow you to do a wide variety of activities that you normally perform on your own desktop or PC, using only a web browser. The exact facilities provided by such web OSes vary from site to site, but a typical list of features include things like the ability to store files, share files with other users, play music and videos, create documents and spreadsheets, send and receive email, chat or use internet messaging, etc.

You might be wondering why anyone would want to use a Web OS, seeing as how they are not real operating systems. After all, you still need an operating system like Windows, Mac OS X or Linux to run your browser in before you can access these so-called WebOSes. In general, the web operating systems are primarily useful if you want to work from multiple computers, and want to store your documents, email, bookmarks and other files in one place where they can be accessed from any computer. They are also useful if you need to share files with others, store backups of your important files online, or regularly use an Internet cafe.

In view of this, there is some overlap between sites that advertise that they are Web Operating Systems and those that call themselves by other names. If your purpose in using them is for writing documents, so you may also want to check my Free Online Office Suites: WordProcessors, Spreadsheets, Presentation page. Those who want to back up their files online may also want to look at the Free Online Backup, Internet Hard Drive for Offsite Backup page. Finally, for additional file sharing facilities, you may also want to explore the Free File Storage Hosting page. The criteria for whether a site is listed on one of those other pages or on this page is sometimes a bit arbitrary, so give the other pages a look as well if you're hunting for such a facility.

Update: From the looks of things, providing free Web OSes does not seem to a viable business model. Most of the WebOSes previously listed here have closed. As such, the list below may be empty (or close to empty). Sorry. I can only list stuff that exists.

Related Pages

Free Web Operating Systems (WebOS)

ZeroPC (formerly StartForce)

ZeroPC provides you with 1 GB of storage for your files, a file size upload limit of 25 MB, a monthly bandwidth limit of 2 GB, and the ability to share your file with others.

Ghost Cloud Computing, network storage (formerly G.ho.st)

(Update: Ghost Cloud Computing closed on 15 March 2010.) Ghost Cloud Computing (formerly G.ho.st) provides 1 GB of file storage, an instant messenger, MP3 player, internet radio, an office suite, photo editing, games, an RSS news feed reader, clock, weather, calculator, email, a browser (no kidding, a browser within your browser, but one that can store your bookmarks and cookies), the ability to share/publish your files, etc.

Jooce

(Update: I think this service is gone. I have not been able to reach it for some time now. For those who want to try, the original domain was "jooce.com".) Jooce allows you to share your photos, documents, music, and videos, watch videos, listen to music, play games, chat (with MSN, Yahoo!, AIM and ICQ), engage in social networking, store your files online, etc, from a customizable online desktop. Apart from your private desktop, you also get a public desktop, called joocetop, that is accessible to others. Files may even be imported from Youtube. An email client is apparently in the works as well.

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