Proactive usage of a document storage system to facilitate more efficient e-mail attachment transfer
Publication Date: 2010-Dec-08
The IP.com Prior Art Database
Disclosed is a method for an email system that allows it to work in conjunction with a web-based, central document storage system to automatically save attached files to the repository. In subsequent emails that contain the same attached file, the system determines whether the recipient has access to the central document storage system. If so, it sends a link to the file instead of the file itself. If not, then the file is sent as an attachment. This invention saves data space on servers.
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Proactive usage of a document storage system to facilitate more efficient e -mail attachment transfer
Email users commonly have to send the same attachment in multiple email messages. This places a strain on both networks and email servers. Redundant storage of repetitively used attachments occupies unnecessary, redundant hard drive space both on the sender's and the receivers' email servers. Further, sending these attachments places strain on both sender and receiver networks.
To reduce these problems, users can leverage web-based services wherein they upload an attachment and then reference that attachment in a subsequent email.  The problem with these services is that they are not automatic or unseen processes; a user must explicitly attach files to the document storage system and then reference the attachment in the email message they send. These additional steps are often enough reason for the user to avoid using the document storage system.
The disclosed solution is an enhancement to an email system that works with almost no end-user intervention to leverage document storage systems to facilitate more efficient attachment functionality in email messages that share common attachments.
The system anticipates that any attachment may be used again as an attachment in future email messages. Based on this anticipation, the system analyzes a user's sent mailbox to determine potential candidates for storage in a document storage system. For example, potential candidates are attachments that were sent three or more times in the last 30 days. This criterion of candidacy is user- configurable to provide the most flexibility. Once a candidate is established, the emai...