TIP: How can I share really LARGE files with someone?

As you may be aware, file sizes are getting larger and larger now a days. Years ago a floppy drive held less than 2 Megabytes, which seems pretty small when one photo on a digital camera can be that big now. And video sizes get REALLY big really quickly. A ten-minute video can be 500 Megabytes or more.

As you are also probably aware, most companies have a limit on attachment sizes in email. The reason for this is pretty simple; server space. (If someone sends a large file to all the staff, that suddenly eats up a lot of disk space on the server.) If the organization uses Exchange, often that limit is 5MB or less.

So, how can you send big files then?

You have several options, including;

1. Try to make the file size smaller. Zip it will often help. Most XP/OS 10 computers have Zip installed. In Windows XP, it’s as easy as: RIGHT-click on the file and Send To, Compressed File. This might shrink the file enough to get under the 5 Mb email limit.

2. Use a different email account. For example, you might have a Google Gmail account. Gmail’s file size limit is 20 Mb. (Be aware that the person you are sending the file to may have a limit on THEIR email system also, so the file might leave Gmail but bounce getting to them. They could also set up an account to share the file.)

3. Try a third-party solution. There are several sites on the net that allow people to send large files. Some examples are: YouSendIt.com — which has a great “send email” bit connected right into it, Box.net, and the one that I personally really like; Drop.io. (Drop.io is REALLY simple to use and has a 100Mb free file storage.)

Security Reminder: As always there are security issues with any file sharing —
1) the very nature of sharing a file makes that less secure
2) sending over the Internet isn’t by nature secure (passing through various servers, possibly throughout the world)
3) if you use a 3rd-party solution (such as Drop.io or others), you are storing your files on THEIR server.

I’m sure there are some other great sites out there for easily sharing a file or two with some people — know any?

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