Large files and file transfers in enterprises

How large files are created

Your staff create large files in their daily work using powerful office tools and it is inside these power-points, spreadsheets, excel charts, data bases, cad files, pdfs and so on that they capture some of the most important and confidential aspects of your business.

These files are quite large and with new technologies are getting larger; your staff want to use these files in many different locations and on many devices and the people with whom they share ideas are often outside your organization and the fact is the power of these ideas is most valuable when shared; and it is here you hit a serious problem.

How big files are sent usually

The tool we would most likely select to share our ideas is email, and email simply does not handle large files well and is not secure especially beyond the boundary of your firewall. You have most likely by necessity set limits on the size of files that can be attached to email and on the absolute size of email storage for each member of your staff; when either of these limits are hit individuals are forced to make a choice about how to share the ideas they have been working on with others.

And here lies the problem; those choices include some safe, complex and expensive tools such as SMIME, or some less safe home built solutions such as in house ftp servers however increasingly staff are finding consumer grade email and cloud services such as drop-box and g-mail the fastest ways to share what they want when they want.

There are many choices that are made, some if not all of these can be found in most work places and these choices create significant risks to your organization. We will show that by removing the flaws in email you dramatically reduce your risk and so remove the associated problems.

Sending large files with Outlook

Remove file size limit for email attachments in Outlook

Microsoft Outlook Warning: The file you´re attaching is bigger than the server allows. Try putting the file in a shared location and sending a link instead.

Microsoft Outlook Warning: The file you´re attaching is bigger than the server allows. Try putting the file in a shared location and sending a link instead.

From time to time, most users need to send large files with Outlook.

When you try to send a large email in Outlook, you are faced with two file size limitations:

  1. The file size limit set by the mail server of your email recipient
  2. The file size limits set by your Outlook itself.

Outlook limits the size of email attachments to a total of 20 MB. It makes no difference whether a single file with 20 MB or several smaller files are attached;
If the total size of the email attachment exceeds 20 MB, a warning message will appear that is well-known by most Outlook users:

Problems with large email attachments

Now one could certainly discuss whether one can still speak of a "large file" at 20 MB nowadays. Furthermore, this file size limit for email attachments dates back to the previous millennium.

Nevertheless, these restrictions give legitimate hints to problems resulting from large email attachments, no matter if with or without Outlook:

  1. Large emails (or emails with large attachments) cause your email recipients' storage quotas to become very busy
  2. Large attachments also burden your own email storage quota (for example, Exchange) by storing the data in the Sent Items folder.
    If you then add yourself, or perhaps work colleagues, to CC/BCC, the memory consumption can increase many times over again.

Send large files in Outlook - With Cryptshare

With our Outlook add-in "Cryptshare for Outlook", you can create your emails in Outlook as you are used to.

It extends Outlooks capabilities so you can attach very large files to your message, up to multiple gigabyte.

You don't have to take care about attachment file size limitations in Outlook anymore! The Cryptshare Attachment-Manager will be activated automatically, when the total attachment file size exceeds a previously defined threshold (5 MB by default).

The files are then not transported via email anymore, but via your Cryptshare server. Even taking the load off your and the recipient's email system. Only your system administrator can limit the size by configuration.

Send large files in Outlook with the Cryptshare add-in

Please note:
We recommend, to watch our video (File attachment handling starts at 1:05) to see how easy it is to send large files in Outlook with Cryptshare.

With our Outlook Add-In Cryptshare for Outlook you can create your emails in Outlook the way you are used to.

It extends the possibilities of Outlook in that you can attach very large files to your message, up to several terabytes.

You no longer have to worry about the size limits for attached files in Outlook! The Cryptshare Attachment Manager is automatically activated when the total file size of the attachment exceeds a predefined threshold (5 MB by default).

The files are then no longer transported by email but via your Cryptshare server.

This even relieves the load on your email system and that of the recipient. Only your system administrator can limit the size by configuration.

Sending large files with the Web App

Upload and share large files via browser

Send Large Files upload screen

The Cryptshare Web App is the central point of communication and can be used at any time from any PC, tablet or smartphone.

All you and your external communication partners need to exchange confidential data or large files is a browser and an email address.

The Cryptshare Web App is self-explanatory and intuitive to use - the user is guided step by step through the transfer process. No training or support is necessary.

Sending large files via HCL Notes

Remove file size limit for email attachments in HCL Notes

Large File Transfer in HCL Notes

With our HCL Notes integration Cryptshare for Notes you can attach files of any size to your emails and send them securely.

File transfer methods and their Pros and Cons

Removable Media

Easily lost or stolen.
Very likely to turn up during waste disposal.

Whilst the cost of mass storage has fallen dramatically widespread use of removable media adds up. USB sticks are more expensive than CD and used widely across organisations, as is common leads to a significant cost.

Not a day passes without lurid details of security breaches where a USB stick or CD is left on a train, recovered from a dustbin or dropped in the street. Once the data is on these devices it tends to stay there. To test this look in your desk drawer, do you find any USB sticks? Now take a look and see if there is anything confidential on them…

Removable media gets lost and stolen, and it gets recycled. Even when encrypted it remains a material risk to data security and in many companies it is prohibited. It remains one of the most frequent cause of data breaches.

Very easy to use, very easy to loose. 

Cloud Services

Consumer grade. Places your most sensitive data outside into the "Wild West".

On the face of it very low until you dig into to it to find out who is expensing the drop box accounts. Suddenly it looks expensive, and the risk of compliance breach is very, very high.

Poor, in general the cloud solution vendors are fighting hard to defend private data but stories of breaches are frequent. In addition issues such as data location and legal jurisdiction are becoming new vectors for data loss or breach.

These services are used in an ad how and uncontrolled manner and so do not fit the governance requirements of an organization. Breaches when they occur cannot be defended.

Ease of use – These are appealing and easy to use solutions. They are a low stress choice for individuals and a high risk and complex problem for the organization to unravel.


Requires management of user accounts and may be a graveyard for data.

Once set up and running an FTP server is relatively cheap to run but they will most often occupy a member of your staff for some time to build and manage. Transaction costs are low but access may be complicated so user set-up and support will take time.

In house FTP servers are not secure. User access controls are frequently rudimentary and it is common to find large amounts of legacy data on older ftp servers which have not been purged, however they have the benefit of being inside your DMZ.

Large files may be handled by ftp servers, but controlled availability data integrity and user authentication are weaknesses and the concepts of non-repudiation are handled poorly. Some level of audit trail is possible.

For non-technical users ftp services are un-popular and with security being especially low outside the DMZ services based on ftp are sporadic in use. However relative ease of access and lower authentication hurdles mean that they are easy to use.

Secure FTP

Complex to use, time-consuming to set up and operate. May conflict with other infrastructure. 

More expensive than regular FTP and more complex to install and create SFTP can place a very large burden on your corporate IT infrastructure and on IT staff to install administer and manage. The need for user accounts and administration add to the costs.

Bringing encryption in transit and in storage provides short term security but often poor long term management of the data store. SFTP does have the benefit of running inside the firewall and being locally administered offers some configurability. In the long term SFTP solutions tend to be updated infrequently and are vulnerable to current threats.

SFTP services are rarely certified but they have some advantages, high security, clear process inclusion often policy driven and a clear audit trail. Against this is the problem of ad hoc usage and management which can place barriers to use.

Requiring a client installation SFTP takes time to set up and some level of training before it can be used. For the client end it is more complex to use than SFTP and policy creation is complex. Back to overview Learn now how to transfer files using Cryptshare.

MFT Solutions

Secure but complex. Limited for ad-hoc requirements. Expensive.

Whilst offering comprehensive functionality these solutions are very expensive to licence to install and to manage. Because of their complexity they also create barriers to use, require training and often require external users are licenced.

Is high, encryption is strong if complicated to use multiple policy tools and options allow strong control. In general these products are designed towards narrow security functional requirements with the addition of features later on. Complexity may put some users off.

Good governance depends on use and if complexity or high cost, slow implementation or technical barriers intrude this is placed at risk. The products have the ability to offer high levels of good governance at a price, but they possess a downside risk.

Very wide functional capability mitigates against ease of use. Once mastered then always used but to truly gain the best of these tools extensive training is mandatory. Training introduces cost and time in implementation.

Post and courier Services

Still perceived as safe, but old-fashioned, slow and expensive.

Very expensive for each and every use and very slow by comparison to electronic communications. There is a $50bn per annum business shipping A4 sized envelopes around the world.

Good, documents are packaged and cannot be read and in general loss rates of documents are very low. The records of most modern logistics companies are excellent in maintaining security, breaches typically occur before shipping and after delivery.

Whilst use of courier services in very well established in certain markets many companies are seeking faster and cheaper ways to share documents with less impact on the environment.

Easy to use, but most often used by third parties, PA’s and secretaries. Ease of use tempered by very slow speed of delivery and return.

Advantages of file transfer with Cryptshare

  • Send files of any size
  • Encrypted file transfer
  • Password protected file transfer (optional)
  • Recall/delete uploads at any time
  • No software installation needed
  • No user accounts needed
  • Automated deletion of all files on server
  • Documentation of all activity for compliance

Requirements for data transfer solutions are constantly increasing


Send Large Files with any Browser

Exchanging large files between businesses: B2B.

Few companies regardless of sector, can avoid exchanging data packaged as big files. It happens many times daily and is now almost exclusively done electronically. Users face two challenges: Firstly, the content is usually pretty sensitive, and secondly, the file attachments are often too large to send via email.

However, since the data has to be sent urgently employees, customers and business partners use solutions that are not in the control of the enterprise and lack basic data security, simply due to the absence of an alternative. We will discuss the best ways to share large files and show you the benefits of Cryptshare.

Sending large files, videos, power-points, CAD drawings and so on was and still is a task with unwanted difficulty. To send a PowerPoint presentation or similar data ad hoc as you would an email attachment is likely to be blocked by your email server, if not by yours then by the recipients email system. There are many solutions to this problem, but certain criteria should be met.

So how can I send large files in daily business life?

For enterprises it is essential to be able to send and receive sensitive information and large amounts of data ad hoc, quickly and securely. Demands to exchange data securely - whether secret documents or big files - will increase in the future. Companies must have access to secure and easy-to-use solutions that are easily available to all.

The fact is that software solutions with which large files can be secured and sent that handle emails and offer an audit trail at the same time, are rare. The security you demand when transferring large files is only provided with a few applications.

That's why we developed Cryptshare in the first place. A secure file transfer solution that lets you send files of any kind, of any size, securely, anytime, anywhere.

File transfer software - Acceptance, usability & individuality

When sending files, security is not the only issue. It should be possible to do quickly and easily too. A software solution for secure data transfer must be extremely user-friendly and available at point of need.
The email and file transfer solution should be easy to use for all communication partners - employees, customers and suppliers. A user interface, which is well structured and guides the user, is essential.

Typically the solution brings the ability to customize the file upload and download to specific policies, while maintaining easy handling for all parties involved. The enterprise should, for example, define sender and recipient combinations and set file size limitations, if bandwidth needs to be protected. Sending files via email should be handled away from the company's email server and instead be handled automatically via the encryption software.

Trust plays an important role in business communication. Therefore, the web application of the encryption software must be adaptable to the corporate design of the company, showing that care is being taken.

Industries and their special file formats

In some industries specialized file formats are used for critical and mostly confidential material. In addition to security and ease of use your solution should have the ability to handle all file formats and files of any size. In order to be able to send very large files which the recipient can also receive, a receiving software must be compatible with a variety of possible file formats.

Every company depending on the industry has its own requirements for a successful data exchange: the employee of a film production company sends videos, a human resources manager rather contracts in the form of text files, but no special requirements should exist to inhibit successful sharing of large files.

Engineers, architects or technical draftsmen often send and receive CAD files. Banks, government agencies, the pharmaceutical industry and many other companies need to exchange information in a wide variety of file formats while respecting strict legal requirements.

No matter what your focus is on data exchange, with Cryptshare, you have a user-friendly software on your side that can be adapted to your needs for the secure exchange of large data.

FAQ about large file transfers

How to send large PowerPoint files?

Large PowerPoint presentation files in marketing

The presentation software PowerPoint has been established in the business world for decades. Admittedly, there are established alternatives such as Prezi, Keynote, Google Slides or Impress from LibreOffice. However, PowerPoint is firmly established in the broad desktop environment. Since the topic of "creating appealing presentations" is traditionally located in the marketing department, presentations are correspondingly frequently edited there.

When are PowerPoint presentations sent out?

The content of presentations is often still prepared in the specialist departments such as sales and development or at management level. However, the PPTX documents are then usually handed over to the marketing department to be prepared in line with corporate design or "to make them look good". Before larger events, in the "hot phase", it can also happen that several departments prepare their slides simultaneously and independently and send these individual slides to Marketing.

This happens partly via releases in the file system, but often also by email. However, PowerPoint documents very quickly exceed the file size of 25 MB. Above this data volume, however, email servers often no longer accept incoming emails. At that point, employees often get creative and look for their own ways to deliver the PowerPoint files to marketing, not infrequently using unauthorised, free cloud services they know from their private lives.

Why are PowerPoint presentations often so large?

PowerPoint presentations go far beyond mere collections of texts, tables, graphics and screenshots. They have long since evolved into genuine multimedia presentations and contain embedded video files (avi,mp4), audio files (wav,MP3) and other documents such as PDF. All too often, all kinds of media are carelessly inserted in the design phase without considering the file size of the individual media. However, before integrating them into the presentation, they should be prepared by an experienced media designer in a media-friendly way, i.e. scaled down, cut and compressed in the correct file format. In this way, the file size can be drastically reduced and you retain the best possible ratio of image/sound quality and data volume.

Why free cloud providers are often a bad choice

When you send large PowerPoint files via free cloud providers, the ownership rights often pass to the provider. The transfer size is limited, the data is not encrypted and you can no longer recall uploaded PowerPoint presentations if you have entered the wrong email address as the recipient.

It is better to send your PowerPoint file online via your own server, for example with our solutions for secure data exchange.

How to send large videos?

Large videos in Marketing

In the age of video marketing, marketing departments are involved in the production of video campaigns on a daily basis.

After the first video was uploaded to YouTube in 2005, numerous other video channels such as TikTok, Twitch and GIPHY have since been established. In LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter, too, reach and interaction rates can be significantly increased through entertaining video content.

Accordingly, marketing staff produce, edit, compress and send videos of various sizes, depending on the requirements of the channel and the end devices.

Why are video files often so large?

Due to ever-improving playback devices and displays, the file size of videos is increasing analogue to the resolution from SD with 858x480 pixels to HD with 1,280x720 pixels or Full HD with 1,920x1,080 pixels up to 4K with 4,096x2,160 pixels. Thus, a high-resolution video with a high frame rate reaches several GB per minute.

The challenges of sending large videos

Sending these large video files to customers, partners and suppliers can be a challenge; during the production phase of a video, agencies and marketing departments often still use the cloud services of the video editing software to collaborate on it, for example, after previewing a rough cut. However, when the final rendering is then available in the file system and needs to be sent "once again quickly" to external recipients, free cloud providers such as WeTransfer or Dropbox are often used. Simply because there is no in-house solution that is adapted to the company's own needs.

Why free cloud providers are often a bad choice

When you send large videos via free cloud providers, the ownership rights often pass to the provider. The transfer size is limited, the data is not encrypted and you can no longer recall uploaded videos if you have entered the wrong email address as the recipient.

It is better to send your videos online via your own server, for example with our solutions for large file transfers.

Large File Transfer Insights

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