Would you use a saw to hammer a nail? It could be dangerous to make use of email to talk about files with other people when it only results in chaos and people making use of the wrong version of the file.
We all know the wisdom of ‘use the best tool for that job’ – to do otherwise is to invite confusion and lost files. It’s no different with all the many choices of online Internet-based tools: select the best one and you job will likely be sped along to successful conclusion.
Email is the #1 Internet application. Free mail services like Yahoo Mail, Microsoft Hotmail and Google GMail are perennial favorites because they provide powerful mail capabilities, work from the browser or computer, and are free. Many of us still use PC-based mail programs including Microsoft Outlook.
However, whatever mail program you make use of, you are bound to have tried it sometimes to talk about files with friends or colleagues. It’s so tempting because it’s so simple – just attach the file and hit ‘Send’, and the message is sent away and off to Samantha and Henietta. Not just that, but you can be assured they’ll notice it – it’ll be right near the top of their share an email as a link.
Or could you make sure? There are several potential hitches with sending files by email, and a more pervasive problem when people slip into utilizing their email programs as being a ‘filing system’ for dozens or hundreds of file attachments they’ve received.
First, the potential hitches to them even getting the file to begin with:
1. Your email system or theirs might absolutely refuse to deliver the attachment because it’s too large or because virus protection software is over zealous and stripping out attachments
2. Their email system could have spam filters that prevent them from ever seeing the email
3. Your email may get lost within their inbox – never noticed by them; only leading to you being asked to ‘send it again please’
Second, the more pervasive problem when both you and your colleague Samantha and Henietta slip into using email as a filing system. However , email inboxes and folders top off with lots of emails with lots of attachments, so when you send a new version of a file, the previous version of the file never disappears altogether – it’s also still there, lurking in their email folders. It’s bipgkh too easy for them to mistakenly refer to the wrong version of the file. This can be a major source of confusion, mistakes or worse.
There’s a much better method to share files with a number of groups than sending them via email attachments – post the files online in to a single file sharing website, where all of your colleagues have secure access to the files. That way, members always access the most recent, most current version in the files.
There are a number of excellent online file sharing solutions for groups. The most effective provide various levels of support for groups to set privacy levels and so the files are only able to be accessed by group members who log on with passwords.
Some really good methods to find directories of file sharing would be to Google or Yahoo explore ‘file sharing directory’. Or Google on ‘CloudHQ. Free File Sharing’ for a free service.
The 3rd, is an easy-to-use system where you produce a free account and organize your data in folders which you name whatever you decide to like. Folders can contain files you upload, in addition to native web documents you could make in CloudHQ. You determine the ‘sharing’ on the files and folders to control who sees what – which means that your details are always as secure as you wish. You may also grant edit rights to permit others in your group to upload files right into a folder for sharing.