Complete Guide To Handling Large File Uploads

Filestack file uploader

File uploads are an essential part of many modern web applications and websites. For example, sites like LinkedIn and Indeed enable users to upload CVs and resumes in the form of documents. Similarly, thousands of people upload photos and video files on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. However, sometimes files uploaded by users are too large to send over the internet. Additionally, large file uploads can cause issues related to latency, speed, and timeouts, which can frustrate the end users. This is where you need a large file upload. Large file uploads can be used for different purposes. For example, users may need to upload files on a web app or upload documents for business use.

Sometimes, you also want to transfer large files, such as large videos and other media files, to friends and family, etc. To ensure that large files are uploaded and transferred quickly and securely, there are key considerations to keep in mind.

In this article, we’ll discuss issues related to large file uploads. We’ll also show you how to enable large and fast upload file.

What Are The Problems Related To Large File Uploads?

Filestack file uploader

File uploading has been a part of many web apps for some time. However, according to trends, file sizes have increased over the past few years. This is because we now have modern cameras that allow us to capture high-resolution pictures and make HD videos, and such files are quite large in size due to their high quality. However, large file uploads can be a major challenge for web developers that can cause an error message to appear or cause the upload to fail altogether.

Here are the common issues with uploading large files:

Network Bandwidth and Speed Issues

Network bandwidth can be a major issue with large file uploads. It’s because large file uploads require more bandwidth and time than small files. If the internet connection of the user is slow, the file size can exceed the maximum file size allowed by the server before it is fully uploaded. Additionally, when several users upload multiple files at once, it can result in network congestion and slow down the entire process. This can result in a bad user experience.

Speed issues can also occur when you transfer files to your server in a single batch. It’s because all the files uploaded by users are sent to the server via the same route, resulting in gridlock.

Server Limitations

Another big issue with large file uploads is server limitation. Most web servers have a maximum size limit for files that you can upload. Additionally, many servers only allow a specific number of concurrent uploads that can take place simultaneously. Some servers only support specific file types. For example, some servers don’t support compressed or zip files.

Large files can also pose security issues. For example, cyber attackers can upload files that are too large in size, which can cause the server to malfunction.

What Are Different Ways To Handle Large File Uploads In Apps?

Enbaling large file uploads

While enabling users to upload large files is an essential part of several apps, it can be challenging for developers as uploading large files require more resources and bandwidth. Fortunately, you can use different techniques to make the process of uploading large files easier and more efficient:

Chunked Uploads

Chunked uploads mean breaking a large file into smaller pieces or chunks and then uploading them one by one periodically. This makes it easier for the server to handle the uploads because it can process each chuck separately instead of processing one single large file.

Chunk uploading also allows us to resume the upload where we left off, even when there is a problem with uploading one or multiple chunks. This is very helpful when we are uploading large files from a mobile device with an unstable connection.

File Compression

Big files can be uploaded more quickly if we compress them before uploading. This is especially a good technique for uploading media files, such as images and videos. Today, you even can use free compression software to compress files without losing any quality.

Enabling Parallel Uploads

Parallel uploads mean splitting a large file into multiple smaller parts and then uploading each part simultaneously. This way, the server can manage multiple file uploads simultaneously.

You should also focus on asynchronous uploading, as it allows you to upload larger files in the background while your app continues to function smoothly.

Storing Files To The Cloud

When you’re storing and processing files in different locations around the world, they will take longer to upload. Hence, it’s recommended to send large files directly to your cloud storage. You also need to ensure that you’re sending files to the nearest bucket or data center of the cloud storage service. This will increase the uploading speed and reduce errors, as your files won’t have to travel to various locations.

It’s also crucial to choose the cloud storage provider carefully because different cloud-based storage services have different file size limits and storage space. Popular cloud storage services like Google Drive, Amazon S3, and some other services offer a file size limit of up to 5TB.

How Can You Ensure Secure and Fast Large File Uploads?

You can ensure secure and fast large file uploads by following a few key steps:

  • It’s crucial to choose a reliable hosting provider with secure servers and extremely fast connections
  • You must also use an encryption protocol such as end-to-end encryption, SSL, or TLS to ensure the files won’t be intercepted during the upload process.
  • It’s recommended to use a content delivery network (CDN) as it helps speed up the upload process.

Filestack File Upload Service

Filestack file upload service for large file uploads

Filestack is a reliable file upload service that offers a 99.9% uptime guarantee. It makes uploading and managing large files super easy and offers affordable pricing plans.

When it comes to fast and secure large file uploads, Filestack offers a range of features. For example, it allows you to split your files into pieces or chunks and upload them asynchronously. All the chunks are stitched together efficiently once they are uploaded. This helps prevent timeout errors. With Filestack’s efficient Content Ingestion Network (CIN), you can significantly increase international upload speeds.

Additionally, Filestack supports parallel and resumable uploads, file compression, and more. Filestack stores uploaded files to an S3 bucket (internally managed). However, it also supports cloud storage integration. This means if you’re already using a cloud storage solution, you can easily integrate it with Filestack. With Filestack, users can drag and drop files and securely upload them without worrying about server limitations or network bandwidth issues.

How Can I Send Large Files To Others?

exchanging large files through Airdroid Personal.
Source: Pexels

In the past, most people used to send files via email or transfer them via a USB flash drive. However, sharing large files via email or USB can take a lot of time and involve several issues. Fortunately, there are now other more efficient ways to share large files with others.

If you want to quickly share files, such as a movie or video file, with your friend, you can use a file transfer service, such as AirDroid Personal, which lets you transfer large files between various platforms, such as a Windows, iPhone, or Android device. You can also use a file-sharing app like Filemail, which hosts your uploaded files in the cloud and provides a direct shareable link to your files. Your friends can then use the shared link to download their desired files.


Handling large file uploads in apps can be challenging for developers. However, you can upload large files efficiently by:

  • Storing files directly in the cloud
  • Splitting large files into smaller parts or chunks
  • Ensuring your files are stored in the nearest storage bucket and take the shortest route to your cloud storage

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I send large files to others?

You can send large files via a file transfer service or file-sharing app like Google Drive or Filemail. These tools allow you to share a download link with your friends and family.

How can I enable large file uploads in my app?

You can efficiently enable large file uploads in your app by using a tool like Filestack file uploader. Filestack allows you to split your files into chunks and upload them one by one. You can also enable parallel uploading and upload each part simultaneously.

Can large file uploads cause problems?

Large file uploads, if not handled carefully, can cause server problems, such as latency and speed issues, upload errors, and security issues. Sometimes, servers also reject a file upload request because of an unstable internet connection and network interruption.

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