Re: Electronic File Transfer

Subject: Re: Electronic File Transfer
From: soundy -at- NEXTLEVEL -dot- COM
Date: Thu, 29 Feb 1996 09:46:37 -0600

In <9601288255 -dot- AA825526687 -at- ccmail -dot- ndc -dot- co -dot- il>, on 02/28/96 at 12:54 AM,
"Bar-Haim, Pam" <pbar-haim -at- ndc -dot- co -dot- il> said:

> My company is debating options for electronic file transfer that *do
> not* allow the recipient to change the file. We do want them to be
> able to view, read and search for key words in the documents.

Any file can be made effectively tamper-proof by setting its "Read-Only"
attribute. Users could potentially change it, but not make those changes
permanent (ie. not save them to disk). Removing access to some kind of
command-line shell or file manager would then mean they can't change that
attribute either.

> One option we are considering is Adobe Acrobat, but we have been warned
> that it produces very large files. Can anyone offer pros and cons of
> using Acrobat? Comment on the file sizes? Does anyone know of a good
> alternative? Any information would be greatly appreciated!

An alternative would depend largely on what types of documents you're
dealing with, what types of information you want to provide, how you need
to be able to access the documents, what platform(s) they'll be accessed
from, and so on.

If "remote" access (from other machines on the network or another
location) is the order of the day, you could set up a simple http server,
set the documents up as web pages, and use web browsers to view, read and
search them. If it's large amounts of data configured in a database, you
could use someting like "Remote Access Database plus" (assuming, again,
you need remote access to the information, be it via phone line or
internal LAN) or a program like Doorway to give direct view/read access to
the file while not allowing the user the ability to edit the file, or to
drop to a shell to change the file.

If access directly on workstation(s) is necessary, but will remain within
your company, it would be simple enough to set the file Read-Only, then do
something devious yet simple, like rename, hide or delete ATTRIB.EXE on
all the workstation(s) so users can't change that attribute.

Again, the options really depend on exactly what type of documents you're
dealing with, and that depends on what kind of information you need to
present.


Your friend and mine,
Matt
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