How To Send Large Files

As employees become increasingly dependent on the ability to share and collaborate on large files, organizations are finding new tools that make file sharing simple. Finding a method that’s both easy and secure, however, can be difficult. Read on to learn the best ways to send large files securely – inside and outside the office.

What is Considered a Large File?

Most email clients limit the total message size – including message text and any file attachment – to anywhere from 10 MB to 25 MB. However, delivery isn’t always guaranteed – when nearing the higher end of the scale, sending within the same client (i.e., Gmail to Gmail) is the best bet, otherwise another email server could reject the too-large message. When files exceed these size limits, using a dedicated file transfer method or email add-on is the best way to securely send data.

Large Files Transfer Options

1. Using Free Tools to Send Large Files


Should you use a free tool? That depends. For sending one-off documents that don't require any security precautions or privacy, a free tool could work great. But free – especially when it comes to sensitive data – is typically too good to be true.

Whether you need to maintain strict confidentiality, meet compliance requirements, or provide audit trails, sending large files with a free method typically is not the best way to send files securely. The free tools you may find in an online search rarely have the security necessary to protect your data as it moves from A to B.

Keep reading: No Such Thing as Free File Transfer

2. Sending Files Over Email

Email works to send large files until you start to approach the file size limit – but isn’t necessarily the best way to send large files securely. Jump to Sending Large Files Over Email: Tips and Tricks

3. What About FTP?

While both free and popular, FTP is outdated and doesn’t meet today’s cybersecurity standards. Sending files via FTP exposes your data to security breaches, and there are many new, more secure options that have taken FTP’s place. Jump to Secure File Transfer Options

Keep reading: Is FTP Dead?

Watch: Replacing FTP Scripts with Managed File Transfer

4. Homegrown Scripts

Homegrown scripts can have time-consuming upkeep and might not stay current with evolving hazards. Plus, these often rely on the original author to make quick changes. While they may begin life as cost-effective solutions to sending files here and there the constant updates, fixes, and re-writes end up taking up more and more time, while still not meeting all your file sending needs.

5. Secure File Transfer

Secure file transfer tools, like managed file transfer (MFT) solutions, can simplify and streamline the exchange of authorized data between organizations and their trading partners. They are flexible, encrypted, and centralized to fit into your current processes, translate data between popular formats, and track data movements. MFT solutions can support popular transmission protocols, safeguard file transfers through modern encryption technology and authentication, and give administrators greater control and insight over data movements.

Questions to Consider If You’re Using a Free Tool:

  • Does your solution have a “resume transfer” option or delivery receipt? What happens if your file doesn’t make it to its destination? Are you informed?
  • Is your data secure as it moves from A to B?
  • How long does it take your file to get to your recipient?
  • Does the tool you’re using to send large files expose your servers?
  • Is your solution better at sending large files once in a blue moon, or sending files on a recurring basis? Can it do both?

If your organization needs assurance that big files transfers will be executed without a hitch, it’s time to look at a more robust solution.

How To: Send Large Files

The best method for sharing large files depends on multiple factors, all unique to your organization or the data you’re trying to share:

Sending Large Files Over Email: Tips and Tricks

  • Zip your files to shrink the attachment size
  • Send multiple files separately, or split up your file and attach portions to individual emails
  • Reduce any images – however, this could affect the quality, so avoid reducing image size if it’s an essential print or web piece
  • Sign up for a file sharing app and share a link to the file rather than sending the large file itself
  • Use a secure email module that allows anyone in your organization to send ad-hoc email messages with no size or file type restriction

Secure Email for Sending Large Files

Secure Mial Diagram

Options like Secure Mail lets anyone send ad-hoc email messages and files simply, with no size or file type restriction.

How it works:

  1. Draft a message in the Secure Mail module or Outlook plug-in.
  2. Attach your files – of any size. These are immediately encrypted to protect the sensitive data they contain.
  3. Once you send the message, the recipient will get an email with a unique link to the secure “package.” Then, through a secure HTTPS connection, the recipient can download the message and files.

For the especially security-conscious, file transfers sent through Secure Mail can be password protected, given an expiration date, and/or allow a certain number of downloads before the files within are deleted.

Explore Secure Mail

Secure File Transfer Protocol Options

  • SFTP – Best for preventing unauthorized access to sensitive information while data is in transit
  • FTPS – Choose from two security modes within FTPS to ensure security
  • AS2 – A popular option in the retail industry for securely transferring EDI
  • HTTPS – Protect web visitors’ identities and keep uploaded data
  • MFT – A method that encompasses all of the above, and more

More about these secure file transfer alternatives to FTP

What is Secure File Transfer?

Sending Large Files Securely with Managed File Transfer

Managed file transfer is a secure option that gives you the flexibility to both automate batch files and send one-off emails with absolute security. No file size is off-limits, and built-in features take the pressure out of tracking, auditing, and compliance:

  • Unlimited file size transfers: Big files don’t stump an MFT tool, and you have access to features that give you multiple large file transfer options, including Secure Mail, Folders, batch, and ad-hoc sharing.
  • Email options: GoAnywhere’s Secure Mail lets employees easily send confidential messages and files as secure HTTPS links. Just as easy as sending a standard email.
  • Volume capacities: Multiple big files? No problem. High visibility and scalability can handle the load.
  • Automation: Reduce time spent on sending files and set up automated file transfers for routine sharing.
  • Auto-resume: Provides peace of mind when it comes to network connectivity. If the network has a problem mid-file, many MFT solutions pause and resume when it’s resolved – no more “transfer failed” messages or recipients asking where their file is.
  • Security: A secure file transfer solution encrypts information at all stages – at rest and during transit.
  • Audit logs and reports: If a file ever fails to send, find out before your intended recipient. Plus, if compliance regulations and privacy laws impact your operation, GoAnywhere MFT easily tracks and reports all file transfer activity.
  • Easy access: Through a single, user-friendly web browser dashboard, authorized users can transfer big files anywhere, anytime.
  • Speed: Accelerate large file transfers over UDP data channels.

GoAnywhere MFT offers secure file transfers through a centralized, enterprise-level approach. Data sent through the solution is kept safe during the transfer as well as at rest through industry standard protocols like FTPS and SFTP and Open PGP and AES encryption. With GoAnywhere in place, data sent is more secure, simplified, and meets compliance stipulations. MFT is the best way to send and share large files securely.

Try a Leading Managed File Transfer Solution Risk Free

Take GoAnywhere MFT for a spin for 30 days. Start a free trial and see how MFT can support your organization.

Try MFT Free for 30 Days

Content Collaboration & Secure File Sharing

Sending files to specific recipients is one way to get data from point A to point B. But using a shared app or folder can facilitate collaborative changes. Many cloud-based file sharing tools, like Google Drive, Microsoft OneDrive, and Dropbox, make sharing large files simple. Upload files to the platform and simply assign users access to individual documents or entire folders. Most file sharing tools limit your storage space based on the subscription plan, but still make sharing large files straightforward.

For organizations that need to exchange large files securely with internal users but want to avoid the cost and lack of security controls that come with a mainstream file sharing product, there are options! Consider secure file sharing tools like GoAnywhere’s Secure Mail, Secure Folders, or GoDrive to support your internal file transfer requirements. All of these are affordable, practical, and easy to use.

Learn more about large file transfers for peer-to-peer exchange

Enterprise File Sharing

Also known as EFSS, Enterprise File Sync and Sharing tools help organizations of all sizes sync and share information in the cloud, on-premise, and across multiple locations. An advanced EFSS allows your users to access shared files remotely, from wherever they happen to be working.

Don’t let the word enterprise scare you off from EFSS if you’re a small business. Enterprise solutions are well-suited solutions to help organizations adhere to business-related security standards and compliance regulations.

Why Use Collaboration, Sharing, and Sync Tools for File Security?

  1. Whether you’re sending files in bulk, collaborating on a sensitive document, simply need to send large files – or perhaps all three – a secure file share tool worth implementing should let you easily share files securely in a variety of ways.
  2. They’re primed to helping organizations comply with data security laws and regulations.
  3. They integrate seamlessly with other data security solutions for more layers of protection around your files and file transfer.
  4. Some enterprise file sharing solutions combine the convenience of file sharing with the security of a file transfer tool; using a centralized tool makes managing your file sharing and transfer needs easy.
  5. Unlimited file sharing: with an enterprise file sharing solution or collaboration tool, you’re not limited by arbitrary file size limits or any number of files you can send every day, week, month, or year, so business can run smoothly – no more last-minute scrambles for a way to get your data to the right people.

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