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/snee'ker-net/ Term used (generally with ironic intent) for transfer of electronic information by physically carrying tape, disks, or other media from one machine to another.

"Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon filled with magtape, or a 747 filled with CD-ROMs."

Also called tennis-net, armpit-net, floppy-net, shoe-net, walk-net, foot-net.


Carrying a portable storage device such as a USB flash drive from one machine to another to exchange information. The term was coined in the early days when local networks were not common, and the floppy disk was the transport medium. However, there are still occasions when files will not transfer over a network due to sharing restrictions or just plain software bugs. If USB drive copy restrictions are not in place, sneakernet may provide a solution because files copied to and from a USB drive are a local procedure at both ends.

Floppies were superseded by a raft of portable disk cartridges, all winding up as ancient history after the USB flash drive became popular (for earlier disk devices, see magnetic disk).

Sneakernet Prevails
Alan Freedman, author of this encyclopedia, uses Windows and Mac side by side day after day. For years, Alan transferred files between platforms over the local network. In 2016, after upgrading the Mac OS, all of a sudden, the Mac could not access the Windows machine, and worse yet, it was intermittent. Flash drive sneakernet was the solution. See USB drive and SMB.

The only (almost) guaranteed method for transferring data between machines.
References in periodicals archive ?
Medical platoon leaders would no longer have to revert to analog systems, sneaker net, or work-arounds to report to battalion or brigade commanders, as illustrated in the February 2006 1-25th Stryker Brigade Combat Team lessons learned brief-- The medical company could not routinely check on the Due-out statuses with TCAM--the report was requested through the supporting MED LOG [medical logistics] unit.
Although eliminating the sneaker net and batch processing will benefit many organizations, the gains for the warfighter are exponential.
When the requisition is brought via the sneaker net to the automated system, the requisitions are queued and batched.
All levels I and II medical facilities are familiar with disk or hard-copy information transfer, both of which are often called the "sneaker net." Adding Soldiers and vehicles to convoys to carry these data on a disk or in hard-copy form exposes those Soldiers to some of the most dangerous areas on the modern battlefield.
As a result, units resort to doing "business as usual," which, in this case, means defaulting to the sneaker net. When this happens, future attempts to troubleshoot the new system are eventually stopped unless strong command influence dictates otherwise.
While the less convenient but viable 'sneaker net' option for file sharing had filled the gap in the past, there was no alternative for shared Internet access: broadband can be shared only with a network and, conversely, broadband is the only method for Internet access that can be shared over a network.
The CE-LCMC is preparing to start providing logistics support for CSS VSATs, commercial-off-the-shelf satellite terminals which allow Soldiers in the logistics, medical, biometrics, and personnel arenas to share documents, pass requisitions, collaborate and conduct meetings online, and make voice-over-internet-protocol telephone calls, all without moving from their location, eliminating "sneaker net"--the often-dangerous need to get in a convoy to hand-carry re-supply or spare parts orders on floppy disks.
* Can you do it without deploying the "sneaker net" to obtain the data, writing your own customs scripts, or licensing expensive and complex statistical packages that require dedicated, trained specialists?
To place requisitions for everything from "bullets to butter," Soldiers had to rely on "dropping disk" or "sneaker net"--that is, they have had to physically hand-carry disks containing requisitions data from one location to another.
And it will reduce 'sneaker net' and make it safer," he added, referring to the practice in which Soldiers need to save logistics data on a disk and then drive--or walk--the disk to another location--hence the term "sneaker net."
According to Jose Ilarraza, a logistics management specialist from the Combined Arms Support Command, Fort Lee, Va., who is deployed in Southwest Asia as part of the Automated Logistics Assistance Team, previously the remote ammunition outpost had to rely on "sneaker net"--saving the data on a disk and then walking or driving to hand-deliver the disk to the required location on base.