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Thread: SMTP size limit

  1. #1
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    Question SMTP size limit

    Hello all.
    One of my customers is a printing shop and needs often to send large (5-40 MB) files as e-mail attachments. Since the move to the new server such emails start more or less at a decent pace and then crawl down slower and slower until the connection fails.
    Is there a limit somewhere on the smtp server regarding attachment/message size?

  2. #2
    Administrator AndrewT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by djn View Post
    Hello all.
    Is there a limit somewhere on the smtp server regarding attachment/message size?
    No. But large e-mail attachments aren't exactly reliable (40MB).

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    I have never had any luck sending attachments over about 2MB. At around 2mb I get an error saying the message could not be sent or something to that effect, but the message goes thru. Anything larger from there, and it just fails. Think this could be timeout settings or something in my email program?

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    Could be. Sending large e-mail attachments does require a rather reliable connection. I know I've sent several hundred MB through the same cPanel mail server setup with no problems. But its easy for it to fail as the size increases.

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    Thank you. I was just double-checking, as those sending troubles appeared first somewhere last week. More, I tried the same setting up their mail client to use my Gmail account as smtp and it was briskly sending out the stuff up to gmail's own size limit of 20 MB ca. I'm going to try out their broadband connection with another PC as soon as I can borrow one...
    What are you folks using to check ISP connection quality? Thanks for any idea.

  6. #6
    Administrator AndrewT's Avatar
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    Any lost packets can quickly lead to a time out. Mail is particularly sensitive about this. You could just run a really long ping sequence to the mail server while you're sending the attachment.

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    Good idea. A quick and dirty batch file with a loop and a 15 sec timeout should do the job.

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    Hello. Has something changed lately regarding the message size limit?
    I've just seen a Thunderbird replying something about a global size limit on the server side, somewhere around 52 MB.

  9. #9
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    Nothing has changed in this regard. Though I can't say I would recommend sending attachments that large. You do have to keep in mind the quotas of the domain and email account itself.

  10. #10
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    Since this thread started, there are alternatives like Dropbox that should probably be used for large attachments. The customer gets a link and retrieves it. Less chance of it hitting the recipient's max mailbox threshold. I read a few days ago that Hotmail increased the size of attachments to 40 or 50 GB, but Gmail is still at 20 GB.

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