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thornysarus's picture
930 pencils

Heavy-weight file emailing solutions reviewed

heavyfileI'm sure we've all been in a situation where someone's waiting on a file, but for any number of reasons including large file size, email just isn't a viable solution. In this case, I usually just toss it on the server and email the expecting party a link where they can download the massive file. Simple enough, but if you're server is like mine, at any given time it's always at near-capacity. So, what to do (aside from actually cleaning out the server, of-course)?

Well, the good news is that there are several free, web-based services who offer to upload and deliver these large files in short order. And a few actually do so with out much hassle.

We've selected six of these services and compared them based on similar criteria. For each, we registered (if necessary), timed the upload of the same 50 MB, CMYK tiff file, and then timed each download. Other considerations were limits to file size, relative ease of use and whether it was possible to notify multiple recipients of the file's availability from their site. I also included the results from my personal server, via FTP just out of curiosity (see Speed Report graphic).

I also should note that these test were performed on a Macintosh G4, v10.4.8, with a 1.8 Ghz processor, 1.12 GB RAM, with an Ethernet-to-DSL internet connection. We also used Safari for these tests, so your mileage may vary depending on your configuration. Also, no other internet activity was going on while these tests were being performed, so the results should be fairly indicative of optimum performance for each service.

In order of personal preference:

thornysarus's picture
930 pencils

Bad Ads

This morning, my son came in with this ad, torn from the local paper (really... it was torn, as he and his friends were actually fighting over it).

Go ahead and take a look... I'll wait.

After one look, I knew what I had to do. Scan it and post it to CB. :)

Here's my thoughts:

Ivan's picture

Illustrator CS2 crashing on Pathfinder operation

If you are running an Intel Mac and suffer from Illustrator quitting whenever you apply the Pathfinder commands — there is a quick and dirty solution.

You need to have InDesign installed. You can simply copy the objects from Illustrator into an empty page in InDesign. Ungroup them and apply the required Pathfinder operation within InDesign. Menu point Object/ Pathfinder/. Now you can copy the transformed object back to Illustrator.

Ivan's picture

Free text area selection

Area selectThere are certain occassions when you want to make a special non-linear selection in your text editor. You may for example want to select a column of all first characters in a long list. You can select each letter manually by pressing the Apple (Cmd) key, but this is tedious work.

Ivan's picture

Close all but the active Finder window

WindowCleanerYou probably know that you can close all windows at once by holding the Alt (Option) key while clicking the red close window button in the top left corner. Or simply pressing Apple-Alt-W (Cmd-Option-W).

Ivan's picture

Move, don't copy

When you drag a file from one volume to another by default the system performs a copy operation. You can tell if you're copying because a green button with a plus sign will appear next to the ghost image of the file icon. If you only intend to move the file and not copy, you can simply press and hold the Apple (Cmd) key while performing the drag operation.

Ivan's picture

Combine Exposé with Application switcher

We all use and enjoy the application switcher key combo and Exposé individually. But, did you know that you can combine their features?

First press F9 to activate Exposé. Next, press Apple-Tab (Command-Tab) to cycle between applications. Every time you press Tab, one application's all windows will open up for you to choose from.

mijlee's picture
500 pencils

Software convergence

Random graphic

I was interested by a question in the forums about the difference between PhotoShop, Illustrator and InDesign. I have been thinking about this too more recently, especially Illustrator and PhotoShop. Adobe is pushing people more and more into buying the full Creative Suite and it is a much smarter way to work now that these products are so integrated.


Creativebits is a blog about Creativity, Graphic Design, Adobe, Apple and other related subjects.

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