Talk:Intranet and file sharing tools for low bandwidth

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See the original thread of this E-Discussion on D-Groups

Ole Dahl Rasmussen, 2010/01/06

Dear all,

In connection to the current discussions on SharePoint, I would like to hear any experiences with file sharing tools for low bandwitdth. My organization uses SharePoint, but is considering whether it is the most appropriate one given the fact that we have 11 country offices in developing countries.

The most common usage is fore simple file sharing, so suggestions on ways to do that efficient among 250 people around the globe are particularly welcome.


Matt Moore, 2010/01/06

If you have narrow pipes / low bandwidth then you might want to consider using a bandwidth optimization technology such as riverbed.

Peter J. Bury, 2010/01/07

Good question.

Right now I'm trying to find out how a journalist based and working from Arua, West Nile region, with a yahoo and gmail address can send me a six page newsletter (black and white) compressed with an easily locally available and usable software tool. No scanner apparently, he would have to take high-resolution pictures of each page.


Peter J. Bury IRC International Water and Sanitation Centre

Hapee de Groot, 2010/01/07

Hi Ole,

there are some new initiatives in this respect, commercial one with a free just not enough space, like But I also would break a leg for Dgroups again, maybe not userfriendly but there is filesharing space build within. I also know that with regards to the usability it will become better the coming month.

Kind regards,


Chahira Nouira, 2010/01/07

Hi Peter,

Hi all, Would Dropbox be a solution?


Beatrice Murray, 2010/01/07

Hi Peter,

Uploading might be slow if the bandwidth is poor but another useful site for sharing documents is (free trial version and different file sizes possible).

A. Beatrice Murray International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development Web

George Mu'ammar, 2010/01/07

For low bandwidth we have found Skype to work suprisingly well for file transfer. Clearly this is a point 2 point connection so once it is sent to the fast side of the internet, then someone with broadband can post it on a server.

George Mu'ammar

Gabriele Sani, 2010/01/07


If he has access to it, he can use an OCR software to convert the images to text... but the result will not be optimal. Some editing may be required, if you need to read everything. Good luck with that!!


Gabriele Sani, 2010/01/07

A good overall tool could be a peer2peer filesharing tool that allows the creation of private channels (if you are sharing sensitive information). A few years ago I was using DC++, I do not know if now there are better tools out there...

George Mu'ammar, 2010/01/07

f he can't find a scanner, can he find a fax machine ? you can receive the fax with a PC with a modem and windows fax software has OCR in it.Taking photos is very difficult he may have to mount a tripod over a desk and do many tests before the photos are readable. I used to do that to digitise maps and it's complicated.

Good Luck!!!

George Mu'ammar

Alfonso Acuna, 2010/01/07

Hi Peter,

If your main interest is in the text of the newsletter you can use Adobe Online PDF creator, it uses OCR and therefore can catch the text embedded in the newsletter.

by the way, you don't need upload high definition pictures for OCR, fax quality (100p/i?) will do the trick.


Alfonso Acuna Capacity Development Officer Ecuador/Bolivia International Institute for Communication and Development (IICD) People - ICT - Development

Patricia Mantey, 2010/01/07

Dear Ole,

While we work with a much smaller group of people, we have used with our project staff in numerous countries in Africa as well as in Nepal, and they have been able to use this tool easily to upload and share/store files. Can create multiple folders for different activities, country teams. If offers more functionality than we use right now, including version control. We pay a small annual fee based on the amount of storage space available to us. Others have mentioned similar tools. You can try most out for free.

For Peter Bury--a free version of one of these tools might work for sending your newsletter. We use it routinely for files too large to send through e-mail.

Patricia Mantey AED, Hygiene Improvement Project

Peter J. Bury, 2010/01/07

Hapee, which dgroup would you recommend for non-specific use of low bandwidth correspondance? the km4dev-l ???

Gabriele thanks

But as I'd like to assess the newsletter also on its readability - user friendliness - it's important to see it .pdf like, so in its original form.

Anyone? Peter