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Sending Files to Non-Internet Sites

What if your friend only connects with a non-Unix system, such as CompuServe or MCIMail? There are programs available for MS-DOS, Apple and Amiga computers that will encode and decode files. Of course, since you can't send one of these programs to your friend via e-mail (how would she un-encode it?), you'll have to mail (the old-fashioned way) or give her a diskette with the program on it first. Then, she can get the file by e-mail and go through the above process (only on her own computer) to get a usable file. Remember to give her an encoder program as well, if she wants to send you files in return.

For MS-DOS machines, you'll want to get uunecode.com and uudecode.com. Both can be found through anonymous ftp at wuarchive.wustl.edu in the `/mirrors/msdos/starter' directory. The MS-DOS version is as easy to use as the Unix one: Just type

uudecode filename.ext

and hit enter.

Mac users should get a program called uutool, which can be found in the `info-mac/util' directory on sumex-aim.stanford.edu.

Think twice before sending somebody a giant file. Although large sites connected directly to the Internet can probably handle mega-files, many smaller systems cannot. Some commercial systems, such as CompuServe and MCIMail, limit the size of mail messages their users can receive. Fidonet doesn't even allow encoded messages. In general, a file size of 30,000 or so bytes is a safe upper limit for non-Internet systems.

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