Sending large media files: How free services stack up

by , February 14, 2013

Ever run into issues sending large media files via email? The answer is probably yes, especially if you work in a field which requires the transfer of large format video or audio files on a daily basis. While email is great for many types of workplace communications, file size limitations (usually around 10 to 25MB) make it next to impossible to execute video file transfers via email.

OnlineFileTransfer

So what’s the next step when you need to deliver an important file? There’s FTP, transporting the file via physical media (DVDs, hard drives, flash storage, etc.), or using a free web-based service to deliver your file, an option growing in popularity.

There are use cases where free services for large file transfer are extremely beneficial, especially for consumers. FileCatalyst even provides a free service, Files2U, for sending large files quickly. However, this method isn’t necessarily the ideal solution, especially in large organizations.

There are certain circumstances when free online services for large file transfers should be avoided in organizational workflows, including when:

  1. File tracking or automation is required: In important or urgent situations, you may want to be notified the second your transfer is received and opened by the recipient. There are also times when you may need certain files to be scheduled for transfers at specific times. These features, not supported by free services, help improve productivity and manage file transfers efficiently.
  2. Large file transfers are occurring daily, or several times per day: It’s easy to lose track of important files when they are all stored in email. Furthermore, email attachments greatly increase the amount of data being archived by mail servers, increasing organizational IT costs.
  3. Integration into other systems is needed: When file transfer is integrated into existing organizational workflows and systems, productivity can be greatly improved. Leaving file transfers as a separate process runs the risk of leaving them unmanaged as well.
  4. Transfers require advanced security: While most online providers offer a basic level of security for file transfers, your organization may require advanced security features. When it comes to protecting your important organizational assets, advanced security options like encryption with AES, LDAP(S) and AD(S) available for auto-provisioning and authentication, and brute-force attack prevention are great precautionary provisions.
  5. Your file size is still too large: Although some free services allow files as large as 5GB to be transferred, when it comes to media files this may still not suffice, especially if you wish to send multiple files at once.

If you’ve noticed any of these issues when using free online services for file transfer then your organization might benefit greatly from an accelerated and managed file transfer solution. If not, there’s no harm in continuing to use these free services as long as you’re aware of their limitations.

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