File Transfer

Windows’ Words of Doom (from B$) –

  1. The Time-Fluctuation Phenomenon
  2. The Delayed-Query Syndrome
  3. The Long-Filename Anomaly
  4. The Drive-Full Abort
  5. The Multiple-Folder-Slowdown Paradox
  6. The Yes-to-All Baffler
  7. The Cannot-Erase-File Gotcha

I’m not one to post Dvorak’s stories as I think he’s one of the biggest trolls around, but this article does have merit. Most file transfer systems on OS has many of these problems and it’s not just Windows.

I’ve always wanted a file transfer manager, sort of like a download manager. Features I would love in this file transfer manager:

  • Be able to queue up a list of transfers instead of executing them in parallel
  • Limit the number of simultaneous transfers
  • Continue to next file or transfer if error occurs or needs user action (i.e. overwrite a file or not)
  • Support Yes, No, Yes to All, and No to All
  • Be able to pause, stop, and resume transfers
  • Be able to re-order when transfers are executed
  • Show the speed of transfer
  • Better approximate time left for transfer
  • Force start a transfer to ignore the limit

This seems like a very easy system to write, yet no OS has this capability. I can of course write my own, but it would be so much better if it was incorporated into the core system, so I can copy or move files via the explorer and having automatically bring up the file transfer manager, like when I download using Firefox, the download manager automatically loads.

I am able to explain “the long-filename anomaly”. Windows XP has a 255 character limit for file names. Windows Vista supports up to 260 characters. But this not counted the same way you’d think filename characters are counted. Most people assumed that filenames only refer to the filename + file extension (i.e. MyPhoto.jpg would have 11 characters). Filename in this scenario includes the entire file path, so that means file “C:\Users\me\My Documents\My Photos\MyPhoto.jpg” really counts as 46 characters. So if you tried to move MyPhoto.jpg into a directory which already has 245 characters, it wouldn’t work.

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