The Trouble with Big Emails

Ever had trouble with an email that 'exceeds size limit', & you can't see why?

Possible causes

  1. Email software at sender's and recipient's end has email size limits. Mail servers have sending limits. Your email has to meet everyone's specs.
  2. Email size limits are expressed in bytes. File sizes are often in megabytes (Mb). There's a strange binary arithmetic twist whereby 1 Mb means 1,048,576 bytes, not 1,000,000 bytes. So much for metrication! That 12 Mb file is much larger than you'd think:
    • 12,582,912 bytes = 12 MB
    • 20,971,520 bytes = 20Mb
  3. File size for an email includes all attachments plus the email body.
  4. Files grow when they are attached to an email. Your email software can turn a 9 Mb attachment into 10.2 Mb, without letting on.

Are large emails a good idea?

It might suit you to email large files; but your recipient might not be as happy.

  • Bigger storage needs might cost them more.
  • A small mailbox will easily be filled up by very big emails; your email might stop other important emails from reaching them.

Email systems are not designed to transfer large volumes of data. Sending a huge number of large emails could take a whole system down.

If you work with a big database of email addresses, eg to send marketing emails, your recipients are likely to use a broad range of good, bad & ugly email services. Don't risk undelivered messages & annoyed customers, by bombarding everyone with big emails.

Reliable sending for large files

  • As a general rule: 10 Mb is a safe maximum for most email services.
  • Scans can be monstrously large files. Limit the scan resolution if you can; 300 dots per inch is good enough for many documents.
  • For multiple attachments: send one or two at a time.
  • In the settings area of your mail software, you can re-set maximum email size. Search online for your email software's instructions. But remember that your email has to pass size limits at the receiver's end too.


If you have large attachments to share, what about loading them to your Bizazz website, then emailing the link to your friends, colleagues or customers?

Upload your PDF documents to the website backend, using the File Link icon in the webpage editor. Just email the links.

What if it's not a PDF?

  1. Create a new non menu page. This will be a private webpage that no one can access without being given a direct link... unless you choose to link to it from the public webpages on your site too.
  2. Add all your files' content (photos, text, whatever) to this page. Use the photo processor to load photos to the website backend. Then insert them onto the webpage. Remember to 'clean pasted text' manually in older Bizazz versions; Bizazz v2 does this for you.
  3. Format with headings, etc as you want.
  4. Publish the page. Email the link.


You can read more about file sizes here. Find out more about email management on the other Email menu pages on this website. Visit our main website for pro's and con's of IMAP & POP3 accounts.