How to use the Drop Box


1) Send your files as attachments to an e-mail addressed to -

2) Name ALL your files so that the first few letters cause them to be grouped together in directory listings.

3) You MUST also attach a plain TEXT file created in Notepad or some other non-word processing editor so that we can all figure out what you have posted. Submissions that do not include a text file WILL BE REMOVED as they have little value if not accompanied by an explanation. For help with creating plain TEXT files, Click Here.

4) To help protect the Dropbox against abuse many types of files are deferred. Files that are too large or small enough to be likely spam will also be deferred. These files are manually reviewed and valid ones typically get moved into the dropbox within a day or two.

5) Look at the current contents of the dropbox to see examples for file formats, sizes, other useful guidance.

6) Do not send correspondence to the dropbox, use instead.

7) Please do not mention the Dropbox email address as clear text in postings to newsgroups or forums. Doing so allows spammers to harvest the address and send junk to the Dropbox. Instead, please direct potential users to our web page for instructions.

The "drop box" is an automated posting facility for items related to the newsgroup 'rec.crafts.metalworking', (e.g. binary files including programs, drawings, and pictures) which should not normally be posted directly to a discussion newsgroup.   Normal text questions and comments should be sent to the rec.crafts.metalworking newsgroup.  If you are not familiar with newsgroups, please see "Help Reading R.C.M." for more information. The dropbox is intended for "user" to "user" postings of files. Blatantly commercial postings and those without a valid return email address are subject to deletion by webmaster.

To retrieve files from the drop box, simply click on the "Check the Drop Box" link here or on the home page. You can then click on the title of the file you want. If the file is plain text or a picture, your browser will open it automatically. If the file is an archive (ZIP) file or a program, your browser will give you a choice of opening it or saving it to your hard disk. Select "Save" and give the file a name when prompted by the browser.

NOTE: This facility does nothing to protect you from viruses and malicious or simply badly-written programs. Exercise considerable caution if you download anything other than text, JPGs, or PDF files. Because of the increasing threat of viruses, files with  .exe , .com , .cmd , .bat , .xls , or .doc extension types will no longer post to the dropbox directly. GIF files are no longer accepted directly because of the huge burden caused by all the GIF files attached to the hundreds of spam emails that the dropbox gets each day. The .xls and .doc file types are excluded because of the recent trend to macro viruses. Documents should be sent as plain text and have a .txt file extension. Other prohibited file types should be packaged into 'zip' or some other similar compressed file along with instructions for their use. This will make sure the the user at least has the chance to decide if they want to take the risk of opening the file, instead of having their browser try to automatically open it for them.

By submitting files to the dropbox, you acknowledge that you are granting and Practical Micro Design, Inc. the non-exclusive right to publish the files on the Internet and in other forms such as CD-ROM.

You may place files into the drop box area by sending email to ' ' with your file included as an attachment in UUEncoded or MIME format. MIME seems to be a little safer. This encoding is automatic if you are using Netscape Navigator's Mail or Internet Explorer's Internet Mail. Do not split attachments into multiple parts. Make sure your attachments are NOT sent as "inline" text.  Also many email programs will not pass filenames in the email headers if the filename does not contain at least one dot (.) character.  Agent, ELM (for UNIX), and some other email programs of the same heritage suffer from this problem.  The result is that the file will be saved with a filename of att.# where # is a sequential number assigned by the dropbox robot.  If this occurs you should re-send  the file with a new name because files named att.# may be deleted if webmaster cannot find the mating files.

Some versions of Netscape and possibly other browsers will not open picture files if they do not have a filename that ends in .JPG or .GIF even though they are valid files. It is also a good idea to avoid special characters other than hyphen and underscore in file names because these characters may have special meaning to UNIX or LINUX systems. Multiple attachments per email are acceptable. Also, please make sure your 'Reply-To' address is valid, so that the system may issue an acknowledgment by return mail. Postings which are off-topic, older than 90 days, or originating from an invalid email address may be deleted.

Please keep in mind what it will be like to download your posted files.  Text files should consist of lines of 80 or fewer characters followed by a carriage return.   Many browsers may not be set up to provide word wrap on long lines.  Picture files should be either JPG or GIF format.  It is recommended that the size be less than 50K bytes and that the image fit into 600 by 400 pixels.  The "dropbox" will not automatically post files larger than 2 megabytes.  As with all "rules" there are valid reasons for exceptions, but these guidelines will make your posted files easier for most users to utilize. Webmaster reserves the right to process image files to enhance clarity and/or reduce size.

PLEASE also send a TEXT file to describe your other files. One text file can be used for many binary files, just have them all share the first few characters in the file name so that they are grouped together in the file listing. See the existing files in the dropbox for examples.  In order to be sure that the text file will be saved with the name you intend, it is best to prepare it outside your email program and attach it just as you do the other files. This is recommended because some email programs seem to insist on using their own meaningless names for files that they create. If your file duplicates an existing filename it will automatically be placed into a "deferred" area for manual handling. Older files will periodically be moved into subdirectories. Keep this in mind if you plan to refer to the URL of your posted files.

The text body of your post will be saved in a log file; however it is best if you send any message, other than the text description, about your post directly to to assure that it is read by a human.

After placing a file here, don't forget to announce its presence, including the file names, on 'rec.crafts.metalworking' so that other interested people will know it's here. Also, don't forget to hit the 'Refresh' button on your browser when looking at the Drop Box after submitting a file.

Do not put copyrighted materials here without the permission of the copyright owner. Shareware files typically contain a notice granting such permission and containing terms for copying. Please be aware that original material posted here is likely to be treated as "public domain" unless it contains a copyright notice. Posting original material here constitutes agreement for this site to allow downloads without responsibility for copyright enforcement. If you see copyrighted material posted here without permission, please notify and we will promptly remove it.

If you want a file you have posted to be deleted from the drop box, you will have to email the webmaster to request that it be removed.

This facility should not be used to exchange a file with just one other person. It is no better or more efficient than simply emailing the file to that person.

AGAIN, please look at existing examples of file naming, with attention to grouping by first few characters in directory sort, and at the text files associated with the posting so that you can see what helps viewers and the webmaster make this site easy to use.

Your are encouraged to send your comments on improving the functionality or policies related to this site by writing to ' '.

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