Description of the Transfer Service

This service is designed to allow you to share files significantly larger than 1MB which would otherwise clutter up either your own or other people’s email inboxes, by temporarily making a file (or files) available to other users across the Internet, in a secure and efficient way.

Note: Confidential information should be encrypted (see below).

How to use

Types of user

There are two distinct kinds of users that can access the Transfer system:

  1. internal: University of Glasgow staff who are allowed to create a drop-off that can be delivered to one or more individuals, (whether they are internal or external to the University)
  2. external: anyone else, anywhere on the Internet, who are only allowed to create a drop-off that is to be delivered to University of Glasgow staff members.

Drop off and pick up

A drop-off is one or more files uploaded to Transfer as a single entity for delivery to a specified person.
A pick-up allows a person to collect the dropped-off files.

Creating a Drop-off

When creating a drop-off you:

  • enter identifying information about yourself by logging in or providing your name, organisation, and email address;
  • enter identifying information about the recipient (name and email address);
  • choose which files should be uploaded to the drop-off.

If the files are successfully uploaded, an email is sent to the recipient explaining that a drop-off has been made with a link to access the drop-off.

Other information (the Internet address and/or hostname from which the drop-off was created, for example) is retained, so that the recipient can verify the identity of the sender.

The recipient has 14 days to pick-up the files. Each night, drop-offs that are older than 14 days are deleted from the system.
(if your recipient(s) have not picked them up in that time, you will have to repeat the drop-off).

Ask for a drop-off via "Request Code"

Ask anyone to send (upload) one or more files by logging in and selecting the "Request a Drop-off" button. The recipient will receive an automated email containing a "Request Code" and instructions for uploading the file(s).

Multiple files

There are two ways in which a user can dropoff multiple files at once:

  1. Attach each file individually on the dropoff page
  2. Archive and compress the files into a single package and attach the resulting archive file on the dropoff page. There are many ways to archive and compress files:
  • Mac users can select the files in the Finder and Compress (see the File menu)
  • Windows users can use 7Zip or WinZip
  • Linux/Mac/Unix users, give the tar utility a try

Making a Pick-up

There are two ways to pick-up files that have been dropped-off:

  1. Anyone can use the claim ID and passcode provided in the notification email message to access a specific drop-off.
  2. Members of staff, once logged-in to the system, can display a list of all drop-offs waiting for him or her.
When viewing a drop-off, the user will see quite a few things:
  • The sender and recipient information that the sender entered when the drop-off was created
  • The Internet hostname and/or address from which the drop-off was created
  • The list of files that were uploaded
  • A list of pick-ups that have been made

The recipient has 14 days to pick-up the files. Each night, drop-offs that are older than 14 days are deleted from the system.
(if your recipient(s) have not picked them up in that time, you will have to repeat the drop-off).

Virus checking

Please note that the uploaded files are scanned for viruses, but the recipient should still exercise as much caution in downloading and opening them as is appropriate. This can be as easy as verifying with the sender from the notification email that he or she indeed made the drop-off.

Confidential information

Whilst the transfer service has features that make it more secure than email any information that is confidential should be encrypted.

Encryption tool

7-Zip provides strong encryption suitable for encrypting a file.

Note that:

  • Most older zip tools only provide weak encryption, and should not be used.

Policy: Confidential data policy

Resumable Downloading of Files

Some web browsers support resumable downloads. in the event of an interrupted download

Transfer features support for the server-side components of resumable download technology under the HTTP 1.1 standard. If you're a Safari, Opera, or OmniWeb user then rest assured, you can resume interrupted downloads, we've tested it!

Size Limitations on Uploads

10.0 GB, Internet Explorer and Edge browsers have variable success on uploading files larger than 4.0GB


Please contact the IT Helpdesk