Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 12th Apr 2012 08:59 UTC
Internet & Networking I would honestly serve at the altar of the person that did this. Keep the debugging information, but for the love of god, make your email client do something pretty and useful with it.
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Thom_Holwerda
Member since:
2005-06-29

That said, some people hate to learn. They want the computer to make a 45 MB e-mail go through, rather than learn why it's a bad idea to e-mail such a monstrosity.


In the era of broadband... Mightn't it be time to change email so that id DOES handle large file transfers?

I'm sorry, but I personally refuse to use crappy cloud solution with separate applications, dodgy ToS, etc. to give somebody a file. Instead of trying to change people - which never works - change the product to adapt to the expectations of your users.

Reply Parent Score: 1

tidux Member since:
2011-08-13

That's retarded. We'd have people emailing each other 1080p video files and ruining SMTP for everyone else. I don't think that it's too much to ask people to use a different protocol to send big files. They've only had 30 years to get used to it.

Reply Parent Score: 4

judgen Member since:
2006-07-12

Cloud or not, email is becoming a strain on both the web and the mail servers. (was an atricle here on osnews about more than 40% of traffic on the internet at some time were spam) People just do not read emails any longer (i can back this up with results from SCB 'Statistics Central Bereau', allthogh this statistics only apply to queries of swedes.), just as they do not read anything on twitter or facebok that is not in their "circle". Some bad eggs ruined a fine concept for the rest of humanity just as so many times before. But i would argue it was kind of ruined the moment they had anything but text introduced in e-mail.

And how many of us are not too tired of trying to find "Leg4l dru6s & 0v1agr4" on the web never to find any. =P

Reply Parent Score: 3

chmeee Member since:
2006-01-10

The problem with making email handle large attachments itself is that email is designed to be an all-or-nothing system. How would you change it? Make attachments separate? But if you do that, why not use an email service like Whale Mail (apparently now discontinued by Symantec, was a really good service), which is designed for emailing large files to others?

Reply Parent Score: 2

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

Mightn't it be time to change email so that id DOES handle large file transfers?


That's a massive undertaking and it will not happen any time soon, if ever. Someone might come up with an improved alternative though.
Right now it's time to use the right tool for the job and the right tool for sending gigantic files is not email. Just like how an envelope is not the right way to send a bulky TV.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Vanders Member since:
2005-07-06

"That said, some people hate to learn. They want the computer to make a 45 MB e-mail go through, rather than learn why it's a bad idea to e-mail such a monstrosity.


In the era of broadband... Mightn't it be time to change email so that id DOES handle large file transfers?
"

It's not as simple as that. The receiving server almost certainly will run some kind of AV scanner on the received message before it gets to the users mailbox. Running AV scans on hundreds of thousands of multi-megabyte emails is no fun, and not a cheap or easy thing to have to do.

That's not even getting into the size of the mailboxes you'd need to store all that data for the users who use IMAP but don't ever delete anything.

Reply Parent Score: 5

bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27


In the era of broadband... Mightn't it be time to change email so that id DOES handle large file transfers?

I'm sorry, but I personally refuse to use crappy cloud solution with separate applications, dodgy ToS, etc. to give somebody a file. Instead of trying to change people - which never works - change the product to adapt to the expectations of your users.

So if you want to send your 40MB attachment to your mailing list of friends, the network must bare the load of the 40MB times the number of mailed people. No thanks.
If you want to send files typical of a broadband era, you use tools from a broadband era, so clouds and whatsnot (and then you report the URL in your mail).

Reply Parent Score: 5

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

So if you want to send your 40MB attachment to your mailing list of friends, the network must bare the load of the 40MB times the number of mailed people. No thanks.


*sigh*

I don't think you understand what it means when I say "change email". I'm not saying "allow larger files to be sent". I'm thinking of complete rethink of how the technology works - heck, you could integrate smart P2P technology into the whole thing.

Reply Parent Score: 1

saso Member since:
2007-04-18

Yeah, Google tried it with Wave and failed miserably. E-mail is not a P2P service. For that, use any of the IM services which support P2P file transfers (e.g. XMPP). I don't want your multiple gigabyte attachments CC'd to three dozen people bogging down my mail server... you want to transfer huge amounts of data, pay for the infrastructure yourself. I have nothing personal against you, Thom, but as a mail admin myself, I know how this would end up being used.

Reply Parent Score: 3

Alfman Member since:
2011-01-28

saso,


"I don't want your multiple gigabyte attachments CC'd to three dozen people bogging down my mail server... you want to transfer huge amounts of data, pay for the infrastructure yourself. I have nothing personal against you, Thom, but as a mail admin myself, I know how this would end up being used."

Unless I'm mistaken, he doesn't mean to replace SMTP with another SMTP like infrastructure, but to completely rethink email messaging as a peer to peer content distribution system with support for interpersonal messaging. Only the manifest would be routed through the mail network, but the attachments would be P2P.

People will continue to use legacy jargon such as "I've attached a large file to the email I sent you, you should get it soon".

Under the hood, the recipient client might be notified of a new message and the client could start downloading individual attachments like in bittorrent. Then, and only if it wants to, the receiving end could download the large media files directly from the sender.

This would make it far more efficient than traditional SMTP, especially with large mailing lists or repeated/reforwarded mailings. Obviously this system has slightly different semantics from than when emails are handled by SMTP servers. But the recipient's server could be configured to automatically download attachments for data retention purposes if they wanted to.

I find people don't particularly want to use email to transfer files. But email is the least common denominator approach for two arbitrary people to transfer files to each other without owning a server somewhere, it's a defacto mechanism for file transferring. And it's a natural way of attaching a message to those files as well.


I think Thom's onto something, unifying email with P2P would be a big hit if it were adopted by enough people to make it scale.

Reply Parent Score: 3