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back to article Yahoo! drops! size! limit! on! email! attachments! with aid from Dropbox

Size is everything in the world of email attachments and with a limit of just 25MB, Yahoo! wasn't measuring up - until now. The would-be ad giant has belatedly dropped its size limit with the announcement of a partnership with Dropbox which will allow users to attach huge files to their emails. Both Google and Microsoft have …

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What's so difficult about pasting the public dropbox link for the file in an email and send it?

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Devil

@KjetilS

Sounds like they're essentially automating that process, since it's apparently "too hard" for Yahoo! email users.

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IT Angle

> What's so difficult about pasting the public dropbox link for the file in an email and send it?

You're asking users to stop and think; that right there will stymie most people. Have you never done technical support before?

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Anonymous Coward

What about security?

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Anonymous Coward

On June 20, 2011, TechCrunch reported that all Dropbox accounts could be accessed without password for 4 hours. This was later widely reported in the mainstream press and caused some doubt about Dropbox's 'cloud' technology model....

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You're asking users to stop and think; that right there will stymie most people. Have you never done technical support before?

I have, and you're right. I try to forget that fact :)

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Meh

Paste Dropbox link

Again, sorry to bug you all, but how do I do this? This is turning out to be quite a bit of set up for me.

Why should a dorky user like me have to spend hours figuring this all out. Eg. Copy files to DropBox, don't move them, etc. Okay, I am a little lazy and not too tech savvy. If you can suggest a better forum for these types of questions, please do so.

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Stop

Anybody trying to send me attachments that large can shit right off.

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Anonymous Coward

The twenty something meg limit from Google / Yahoo etc is a PITA!

If you work with video-games (Assets) of just video (edits) the limit is always a PITA.

Yes it can be circumvented by spanning a RAR over several files but its a pain.

Using a DROPBOX like service isn't necessarily a good thing if its your work or its personal and you don't want it fully exposed to the wild...

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Re: The twenty something meg limit from Google / Yahoo etc is a PITA!

>> Using a DROPBOX like service isn't necessarily a good thing if its your work or its personal and you don't want it fully exposed to the wild...

In which case... why are you sending it via "open" email in the first place?

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The twenty something meg limit from Google / Yahoo etc is a PITA!

'why are you sending it via open email...'

Open to suggestions....Sure if you're working with the same team then yes you all can use something more secure. But many small businesses for one-off projects just use yahoo or gmail and don't want to have to learn or use any another service and are squeamish about hosting files on a 3rd party service other than email. One line email links to files can be accidentally emailed to the wrong person, especially by assistants, whereas its less likely to happen when its a gigantic attachment... The file-spanned RAR files I send are password protected, but some clients complain at the extra effort needed on their side.

Any secure alternative practical suggestions to Dropbox like one line emails welcomed...

As long as small biz clients don't have to install or learn anything new because they don't want to...

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Re: The twenty something meg limit from Google / Yahoo etc is a PITA!

>secure alternative practical suggestions to Dropbox

Combine with PGP - there are add-ins for MS Outlook that will help to automate the process. The only issue is then communicating the encryption key to all parties...

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Anonymous Coward

Re: The twenty something meg limit from Google / Yahoo etc is a PITA!

Why Downvoted...?

"On June 20, 2011, TechCrunch reported that all Dropbox accounts could be accessed without password for 4 hours. This was later widely reported in the mainstream press and caused some doubt about Dropbox's 'cloud' technology model"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dropbox_%28service%29#Reception

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Stop

Just because you CAN do it, doesn't mean its a good idea

The email servers I look after have a limit of 15Mb and it's staying that way.

Email is a VERY inefficient way of sending large files, especially if it's something you want to send to multiple people. There's no shortage of file sharing services available now, so really no excuse for using email for such things apart from laziness or ignorance. I don't understand why some major providers are encouraging people to do it.

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Re: Just because you CAN do it, doesn't mean its a good idea

In which case this should be a good development - the file is stored on Dropbox's servers and will only be downloaded on demand - rather than being foisted upon you in a massive email attachment.

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Re: Just because you CAN do it, doesn't mean its a good idea

Thumbs up because I know for a fact you'll get complaints from people saying why can't I send this 1GB file and will call you a server nazi

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Unhappy

Re: Just because you CAN do it, doesn't mean its a good idea

Those poor poor email servers where never meant to move large files. Just because our users don't want to learn about a protocol like FTP doesn't mean we should try to widen the maximum attachment size into what I've come to call FTP over SMTP. (and a promising DOS attack vector)

And now all the webmail vendors seem keen on inventing some two step program where email is integrated with a service that is basically nothing more than FTP over HTTP.

Sending large files over the internet is perfectly valid and we have a fine protocol for that. If the major browsers had put just a little more effort into supporting the FTP protocol more fully than they did, we wouldn't have to be in this mess... le sigh

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Go

Re: Just because you CAN do it, doesn't mean its a

I believe this XKCD comic explains well why this service is necessary. In a couple of years, having 15MB limits on email attachments will sound out of the stone age. Of course, most people will never realize the difference between sending an actual attachment and sending a link to Dropbox — and they should not realize the difference. This is really an implementation detail the user should not have to bother with.

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Megaphone

Why?

Why in the world would anyone use email to transfer huge files like that? Performance is crap, and any attachment is increased by ˜50% when it's encoded, exacerbating the problem. Email was never meant for sending massive files like this. Finally, 99% of emails are transferred serially, which means if you have 50 emails to download to your computer, and the first one is a gig, then you have to wait half an hour (if you're lucky and the transfer doesn't bork) for that to download before you can even access the rest.

The only reason these major webmail services allow for such things is so they can datamine the attachments. This sort of thing is completely impractical for almost all non-web based email systems.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Why?

Frequently run into this problem with small business owners who :-

A. Don't realize even a short video is quite a large file.

B. Don't want to have to learn anything new...

C. Don't want to use anything more than email...

D. Don't want to host the file on a 3rd party service like Dropbox for fear their assistant may accidentally forward the email link to the wrong person!

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Re: Why?

Frequently run into this with large business'es, where email is the only way to reliably communicate to team members spread across several different companies. However, 'large' attachments have always been problematic falling foul of various mail gateway restrictions. There have been enterprise-grade solutions around for years that typically integrated into MS Outlook. These automatically assessed the attachments and on sending, automatically uploaded 'large' attachments to a repository and replaced the attachments in the email with unique URLs to the files. The recipient would click on the 'attachment' and the file would get downloaded.

There are only really two problems with this approach. Firstly there is the need to set up a secure area where these files could be uploaded to and also be accessible to a remote recipient. Obviously with larger enterprises this isn't a problem as they have an IT department to do it. However, with the development of public services such as Dropbox it has become much easier for SME's and the public to gain from these enterprise tricks (although whether the Dropbox version of the service also includes the management and logging functions of the pure enterprise solution is another matter). Secondly there is the client integration (and availability), obviously it is relatively easy to create an Outlook (fat-client) add-in, it is more difficult to integrate into other mail clients (ie. get the relevant developers to implement the functionality). With respect to I ran into problems (back in 2008) trying to get an enterprise client OEM to modify their client so that it could be sold to individual users (ie SOHO users). Aside: Perhaps what we need now is for the Dropbox API to become adopted as a standard by the Open Group...

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Meh

Re: Why?

Okay, I am willing to learn. Think I got my ducks in a row. I am not an IT person.

Downloaded DropBox for Mac OS X. Yahoo Dropbox upload of two 1 page jpegs. Upload very slow.

Recipient has to download from DropBox site which they think is a PITA.

I don't send large files so why do I need DropBox? From what I gather, Yahoo doesn't want to store large files on their server.

Sorry to bother you all, but I am not sure where else to look for help with Yahoo upload speed. Just bitchin' about the other stuff.

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Anonymous Coward

Large emails

To those complaining about huge emails: I thought the point of this was that you're NOT sending large attachments. You're sending links to the file on Dropbox, so the email itself is just a few kb.

At least, that's how it should work. I don't know how Yahoo! is doing it.

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Anonymous Coward

It's about time ...

... that Marissa allowed me to dump my large payloads all over her Dropbox.

Yahoo!

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Anonymous Coward

Re: It's about time ...

Made my day!

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Nice! But!

I still can't select all unread emails at once, just a stupid endless scroll. It seems to be receiving emails much slower than other emails, attracts the most spam somehow, chat bots spawning all the time, and it seems that Yahoo! is sharing everything I do to all my previous contants. PoS IMHO, stopped using it completely.

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Thunderbird

Thunderbird already does this. You can set up Dropbox (or another system) to host files larger than x KB. You don't really see much difference when you receive - you can click the attachment or not, if you do it downloads using your default method of downloading files. It's the best of both worlds.

I can't see why anybody would object to this. Unless Yahoo do it in a stupid way - and how likely is that?

Oh wait...

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Anonymous Coward

Problem.

I don't have a Dropbox account, I don't want a Dropbox account, and I don't want my files and data stored on the Cloud (Dropbox, Google Drive, Skydrive etc).

At least it's a step in the right direction for the new Yahoo CEO. Her predecessor, potty-mouthed Carol Bartz's crowning achievement was needlessly murdering Geocities.

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Anonymous Coward

well...

If speed is necessity:

I have 3rd party VPS server, upload files to that, password protect the folder and turn off indexing.

Send the receiver the url and the username/password, they go to the url, put in the login info, and see links to click on to download or just need to right click and "save target as".

Once they tell me they have downloaded the files, I remove them.

If tighter security is needed:

I do a similiar setup, but I have a series of subdomain of a domain that are pre-pointed via custom A records to the dedicated IP address on my home internet connection.

Being a dedicated IP, has not changed in years and as the A records are already setup at the registrar they are already propagated, so I only need to enable locally.

9 times out of 10, these subdomains are not working since they are not setup/active locally, so when I do activate one, noone would usually know ahead of time WHICH one im enabling.

I will enable one of them on my local server for long enough to have the person I am connecting to download the files, disable the subdomain, and all done.

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Re: well...

Yes, that's the sort of thing that IT-aware users can set up to solve the problem, although many would probably just stick the content in a password-protected archive in an obscure folder on their ISP-provided web server. This Yahoo thing is catering to the sort of user who doesn't know how to find the size of a file, or having found it doesn't know whether it's a reasonable size to send by email. Having had to telnet into a mail server to shift the blockage caused by a large attachment on a slow connection, I appreciate moves to stop naive users from causing that sort of problem, but I'm not sure that enabling big uploads by other means is really the way to go, especially if said naive user might not be sure quite what he's uploading, and to where.

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It's not as useful as a direct attachment

Many U.S. government agencies block FTP, DropBox, Google Drive, SkyDrive, Box, and all other file-sharing and cloud sites. For workers there, there's still no easy way to quickly send or receive a file larger than perhaps 20 MB using their government account or 25 MB using their Gmail or Yahoo account.

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Stop

Can somebody please enlighten me... what file(s) over 500MB would someone want to send that are not pirated?

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