Most Web-based mail services like Yahoo! Mail, Gmail, Hotmail, etc. impose a strict limit on the size of files that you can attach to a single email message. And the same limit holds true for incoming mail as well. For instance, Gmail or Yahoo! Mail will bounce (or return to sender) any message whose size exceeds 20 MB.
While the 20 MB limit is more than enough for personal use, it becomes a limitation if you need to exchange high resolution photographs, large Office documents or 3D drawings with your clients over email.
Let’s assume that you are a corporate IT user, you have Microsoft Outlook as your default email client powered by Microsoft Exchange and the message size limits are pretty relaxed in your organisation.
But one of your main customer is using Google Apps for Gmail as their default mail service (that has the same file size restrictions as Gmail). How do you ensure that large email messages sent to your customer from Microsoft Outlook don’t bounce but land safely in their inbox?
Adobe, the company that develops popular graphic editing programs like Photoshop, launched a new document-sharing service last year at acrobat.com that offers 5 GB of free online storage space for documents, images, PDFs, etc. You can store pretty much anything there except for multimedia content (MP3 music or videos) and executable files like exe and bat, which can potentially contain viruses. The Acrobat.com service has been around for a long time but the company recently released a new plugin for Microsoft Outlook at http://bit.ly/outbat that will help you send large files directly from Outlook.
How it works
You can compose an email message in Outlook just as before. When you attach files to Outlook, they are uploaded to your acrobat.com account in the background and links to those files get included in your email message. The client can then click the links in the email to download the relevant files at his end, no matter how large they are. You can also set different restriction levels for each of the attached documents so that files can be downloaded only by the email recipients.
Amit writes a technology blog at www.labnol.org