#1  
02-08-2012, 04:58 AM
fredphoesh fredphoesh is offline
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Hello guys,

I have some wmv videos on my dropbox account, and my clients need to download them.

Unfortunately, many IT departments prevent mail clients from having the option to "Save Link As..." with a RH mouse click... so you cannot simply choose to download the file. Clicking on the link causes a web browser to pop up and to stream the video, which I do not want.

Is there some Suffix to the URL that one could add so the link forces a download and not an attempt to stream?

I know I can remove the .wmv file extension and ask the client to put it back after they download, but that is a clumsy work-around.

Your help much appreciated.

Mark.
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  #2  
02-08-2012, 05:16 AM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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Ah, IT departments. The evil rival of communication professionals. The primary breeding ground for nerdy control freaks.
But I digress...

Disabling right click in the email programs? Seriously? Oh good grief.

Assuming that the installation of Firefox (with the NoScript plugin) is not possible -- which would disable the click-blocking javascript -- then you'll need to resort to manipulation of the files, as you've correctly surmised.

Renaming the extension, as you've mentioned, is the common easy fix. However, since Windows has decided people are too stupid to be allowed to see extensions by default, this generally doesn't work. (As an alternative, you could also instruct recipients on the method to show extensions in Windows. But, of course, that comes tied to the ability to make changes within Windows, which may or may not be blocked by a control freak IT admin.)

The last easy solution is to put the video file inside of a ZIP file. Windows and Mac OS X come with native abilities to unzip files, so this is likely the most viable solution. (Personally, I prefer RAR files, but that would add a layer of complication to non-savvy computer users. Best to stick with ZIP.)

Because MIME types are handled on the user end computer, the computer gets to decide how to open/save/etc the file. There's nothing you can add to an URL that would force downloading if the computer has already decided WMV = open/play with Windows Media Player (which is the default setting on Windows). So that's going to be a dead end for you.

Another option could be to simply avoid the corporate webmail. Send it to their personal GMail/Yahoo/etc, which would have none of those silly problems. Assuming those sites are not blocked.

Maybe even put it on your own server, and create a "Right-Click Here and Save As (or Save Target As)" link on a basic webpage*. That should be right-clickable.

And again, I feel your pain. I actually use to take a great bit of joy out of making IT VPs look like fools in front of others. For all their pay and training, so many of them appear to be out of touch with how normal people actually use computers and the internet at any given moment. It was a constant source of nuisance to have to work within their ridiculous confines.

Let me know what works for you.


* Code for a basic page:
HTML Code:
<html><body><center>
<br /><br /><br /><br />
<font face="Tahoma" size="4">
<a href="http://www.mysite.com/clientfolder/videofile.wmv">Right-Click Here and Save As (or Save Target As)</a>
</font>
<br /><br /><br /><br />
</center></body></html>

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  #3  
02-08-2012, 05:24 AM
fredphoesh fredphoesh is offline
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Thanks for the quick and detailed reply!

Yep, this is a big multinational corporation, and their IT is absolutely hysterical.
I have been uploading these files all night, about 2.5gb... I should have zipped them first, but now they are 2/3 up, I may resort to asking for their gmail/yahoo/hotmail account details to side-track their mail client inability to Save Target As...

I guess I could also make up a quick html page with the links, and they can then RH click on the links in their web browsers.

I would love to have used FTP and just send them guest details, but alas, they are not allowed to have ftp clients on their computers...

Anyhow, thanks again,

Mark.
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  #4  
02-08-2012, 05:32 AM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fredphoesh View Post
I have been uploading these files all night, about 2.5gb... I should have zipped them first, but now they are 2/3 up
If you have any degree of server admin access (dedicated server, VPS, etc), then you can always do the zipping on the server side. In Windows Server, you'd just RDP to the server, and zip it like you'd do on a Windows desktop. In Linux, it's just a quick zip command from shell (SSH), almost identical to the commands used back in the DOS days (omit "pk").

Glad that I could help.

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  #5  
02-08-2012, 06:17 AM
fredphoesh fredphoesh is offline
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Hi again,
Yeah, I have not done that before, but these are on Dropbox, so I'm pretty sure I do not have that ability...
Thanks again,
Mark.
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  #6  
02-08-2012, 02:38 PM
fredphoesh fredphoesh is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kpmedia View Post
If you have any degree of server admin access (dedicated server, VPS, etc), then you can always do the zipping on the server side. In Windows Server, you'd just RDP to the server, and zip it like you'd do on a Windows desktop. In Linux, it's just a quick zip command from shell (SSH), almost identical to the commands used back in the DOS days (omit "pk").

Glad that I could help.

And welcome to the site.

Hi there,
I just found out how to do it, and thought I should let people know.

You add ?dl=1 to the end of the URL and it will download!

Cheers,
Mark.
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  #7  
02-09-2012, 02:41 AM
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kpmedia kpmedia is offline
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That URL addition is probably specific to Dropbox or a certain browser.

I just tried it on a WMV video on one of our servers, and that URL query has no effect in Firefox or Chrome.
It may be an IE specific function. (Don't have IE on this computer to verify.)

So be aware of that. But thanks for sharing.

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  #8  
02-09-2012, 02:53 PM
fredphoesh fredphoesh is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kpmedia View Post
That URL addition is probably specific to Dropbox or a certain browser.
Yep, Ive just tried, it only works on IE... which is fine for almost all my clients, but I have asked the guy who gave me that tip to see if he knows similar codes for firefox and chrome... I will report back if he replies affirmatively.

Cheers,
Mark.
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