Free Secure File Sharing Software for LAN with Automatic Disocvery: Payload

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Payload is a Windows based application that you can use to transfer documents, videos, pictures etc. extremely fast, between devices on the same local network (LAN).

Payload is also available for Linux and macOS systems. When the program is launched for the first time, it creates a public key pair that is stored on the local file system and acts as a device identity. Devices broadcast their presence on the local network using these identities and automatically connect to each other using Transport Layer Security protocol over TCP. Any incoming connection from public IPs are dropped to prevent data from moving in and out of the local network in relation to any external network. Additionally, all incoming file transfers must be accepted by the user before they are saved to the disk.

The following are the important features of Payload:

  1. Device Discovery: All devices installed with Payload on the same local network automatically talk and connect with each other automatically.
  2. Ease of Use: You do not need to Zip (Compress) any files before transfer. Simply paste or drag and drop files / folders into Payload to start the process of transfer. Files of all sizes are supported without any reduction in speed of transfer.
  3. Speed: Payload provides blazingly fast transfer speeds of a normal Internet connection.
  4. Resume: In case a file a transfer is interrupted, Payload resumes it automatically after the connection stabilizes from the point that it was interrupted.
  5. Multi-Platform: Payload supports Windows, macOS and Linux. Devices running on different platforms can also automatically connect to each other provided they are on the same local network.
  6. Secure: Payload offers end to end encryption (TLS over TCP) due to which nobody can see or access your data including the company.

How it Works:

1. Download and Install Payload from the link provided at the end of this article on two systems. Make sure that they are attached to the same local network.

2. Run the application and type your Name and Name of the Device (for identification), select the Icon and Color theme and click on ‘Confirm’. Repeat this process for any other system installed with Payload.

3. If there are any other systems on the same local network that are running Payload, the Device name (specified above) will be displayed on the screen. Otherwise Payload will display the message ‘You are the only one here’.

4. If there are any other available devices, you can begin the process of file transfer. Select all the files / folders from your local disk and drag and drop them in the specified space. Alternatively, click on the Add Files or Add Directories icon, select the required items and click on ‘Ok. You can also copy the Files / Folders from your local disk to the clipboard and use the ‘Paste’ icon to drop them in Payload. Verify the list of files and folders that you have added, select the Destination device from the available devices and click on ‘Send’.

Add files to transfer

Files ready for Sending

5. On the Destination click on the ‘Inbox’ icon on the left vertical bar and then click on ‘Accept’. The files will be saved in the default Downloads folder of your device. If you want to save them on an alternate location, click on the arrow mark beside the ‘Downloads’ folder, click on ‘Browse, choose the Folder where you want to download the files and then click on ‘Accept’ in the Payload window. If the data was sent accidentally, you can click on ‘Reject’ to delete the transfer.

Accept the Transfer

Data transfer completed

6. On the source system, you can click on the ‘Sent’ icon in Payload to view the files which have been successfully transferred.

Sent files

Final Comments:

After testing Payload with a couple of data transfers, I found that it indeed works extremely fast and is an excellent tool to transfer files and folders including huge ones between two devices provided they are attached to the same LAN.

Click here to download Payload for Windows, Linux or Mac.


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