If you've ever tried to send an executable file through Gmail, you've probably found that Gmail doesn't like to send these files as attachments. Gmail still searches for programs even in compressed files. If you want to share a program with someone, there are a few ways to get around Gmail's restrictions. You can upload the file to Google Drive and then easily share it with others without worrying about the file type, or you can remove the file extension and send it via Gmail as a generic file.
Method 1 of 2: Via Google Drive
Step 1. Know when to use this method
Each Gmail account has 15 GB of storage in Google Drive. With Google Drive you can upload and share any kind of file without the limitations of Gmail. With this method, you first upload the file to Google Drive, then share a link with the people you want to give the program to. Google Drive also has a much higher file size limit (4 GB), compared to just 25 MB in Gmail.
This method works on any operating system and for any type of file, because Google Drive works through your web browser
Step 2. Sign in to Google Drive
Go to drive.google.com and sign in with your Gmail account.
Step 3. Drag the file you want to share to your browser window
You can also click the "New" button in Google Drive, then "Upload Files" to locate and upload the file on your computer.
Make sure to upload the program installation file. If the program does not need to be installed but uses multiple files, you can create a zip file with all the necessary files so that you only have to upload one file
Step 4. Wait for the file to be uploaded
This may take a little longer for larger files. You can follow the progress at the bottom of your screen.
Step 5. Right click on the file in Drive, and click on 'Share
Step 6. Click the "Get Shareable Link" button at the top of the window that appears
Step 7. Copy the link and paste it into your email
This link goes directly to the file, and anyone with this link can download your file.
Step 8. Send the email to anyone you want to share the file with
Do not forget to include any instructions for installing or starting the program.
Method 2 of 2: Changing the file name
Step 1. Know when to use this method
If the file is small enough to be sent via Gmail (less than 25 MB, or 10 MB if the recipient doesn't use Gmail), you can use this method to bypass Gmail's file type filter. It may still be easier to use Google Drive, but this is a good option if you can't use Drive.
The recipient must know how to change the file name so that the program can run
Step 2. Open the folder containing the file you want to send
Step 3. Make file extensions visible
If you can't see your file's file extension (.exe,.bat, etc.), you'll need to enable file extensions so you can make the necessary changes.
- In Windows 7, Vista, XP – Open the Control Panel, select 'Appearance and Personalization', then click 'Folder Options'. Click the View tab and deselect the 'Hide extensions for known file types' option. Click Apply.
- Windows 8 – Navigate to the folder containing the file you want to share, click the View tab at the top of the window and select the 'File name extensions' option.
Step 4. Right click on the file and click on 'Rename'
Step 5. Remove the filename extension
For example, if the file is named file.exe, then you delete.exe so that only file remains.
Windows will ask you if you really want to change the extension. Confirm this. The file will still work if the extension is added again
Step 6. Write an email in Gmail and attach the file
You can drag the file to the message box to add it.
Step 7. Wait for the file to be uploaded
This will probably take a few minutes.
If the file is too large, try sharing it via Google Drive
Step 8. Send the email with the file
This will probably also take a while. Don't forget to explain in the email that the original extension needs to be added back to the file.
Step 9. Make sure the recipient adds the extension back to the file
The recipient does not necessarily have to make file extensions visible. The extension can be added simply by changing its name.