The worst way to share files
How many times have you sent or received an email that says “Please see the attached file for details…”
And there is no file attached??
I do it at least 2-3 times per month… (And that’s even now that Outlook points out half the time there is no attachment… click happy!)
Using e-mail to send file attachments is great in some circumstances, but more often than not it can be a very BAD way to send files…
I’ll give you three reasons why…
- E-mail is one of thee most inefficient ways to transmit files you see e-mail sends everything in plain text… and I mean everything.. even that nicely compressed zip file that your computer has spent ages squeezing every last bit of space out of, e-mail takes it and bloats it up again… I’m not going to go in to the techno-babble of why this is the case, just take it from me it is.
- Imagine you are collaborating on a file with someone you send them what you’ve done, they send you back some amendments, you tweak it and send it back again… That’s just one file right? Wrong it’s at least 8 (Assuming you both only save it once to your computer)… it’s sat in your sent items twice, your inbox Once, your collaborators inbox twice, their sent items once and in both of your my documents…
- If the file you send is more than just a few megabytes it may well be dropped by the recipient’s mail server without either of you ever knowing. Some mail servers are set-up to not pass files of more than 10meg (or less!), and with Reason 1 above your file may only show 5mb, but once it’s been ‘bloated’ it can easily double in size…
Arrgg! So how am I going to send these really important files?
There are loads of great ways to share files, it really depends on your circumstances and security requirements, but a great start is the free tool called ‘DropBox‘
If you’ve not already heard of it, Drop Box creates a folder on your computer that you can save files in to… you can then choose to share that folder with selected people… you can then copy your file in to that folder and whenever you edit it, the other person gets notified and can see those changes straight away…
I use drop box for sharing files with my designer, with my mastermind group, with my VA and with my family (it’s a great way to share our family photos too).
If you’ve not already tried Drop Box, Give it a go now and sign up here it’s Free!
Save you’re email for sending messages, not sharing files. If you’ve got a large file to share with someone, try DropBox or a similar file sharing tool. It’s dead easy to send them a link to a dropbox folder, plus you’ll know when they’ve joined the folder too.
Also remember Drop box is a great way to share files, it’s definitely NOT a way to back them up, you should have a proper remote backup solution for that (Ask me if you’re unsure!)
If you need any help please don’t hesitate to call – 01543 241 234
Oh and big thanks to Karen who sent in the idea for this Top Tip…