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Large files will take longer to send and receive. To check how large a file is before you send it, right-click the file on your computer and click Properties. If the total of all the files you want to send is over 10 MB you will not be able to send them all at once. I, personally, try to stay under 5 MB. There are several ways to reduce the size of pictures and other files.

Picture Files

Probably the most common type of file attachment is picture files. Normal image files are called Bitmap files with the filename extension .bmp. These can take up a lot of file space, so to reduce this they are often compressed into smaller-sized file types which may loose a little quality, but are usually still good enough for most purposes. Most picture files on the Web or sent by e-mail are .jpeg or .gif files.

To convert an image to one of these compressed file types, right-click a picture file and choose to Open With.. and select Paint.

Alternatively right-click the file and choose Edit to use your default graphics editing program.

In Paint, click File and Save As; and in the Save As Type drop-down menu, select a file type such as JPEG. Give the picture file a name then click Save and the picture will be converted to this file type.

.jpeg file sizes can be many times smaller than typical .bmp files. If you right-click the new file you have saved and view Properties you should see a difference in file size compared to the original.

With pictures that are very tall and very wide, even .jpeg file sizes can be very large. The solution in this case is to resize the picture down to a reasonable size.

Open your original picture in Paint again and click Image then Stretch/Skew.

Now you can type in a percentage to stretch the file by. If you input a figure less than 100% you are actually squeezing rather than stretching, for example if you type 50% for horizontal and 50% for vertical then click OK, the picture will be squeezed to half of its original size.

This is a simple way of reducing a picture's physical size and therefore file size. Once you have squeezed the picture to the size you want, save it as a .jpeg as before and when you view the file's Properties again the file size should be much smaller.

Other Files Other files such as Word documents (.doc files) will need to be compressed into .zip files with a program such as WinZip.

However, not everyone will know how to open a .zip file. If they have Windows XP they should be able to open it by double-clicking it. If not, they may have to download a program like WinZip to actually open the file you have sent them.

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