I suspect a tag or link to the file on the device (else, how did you attach it?) could substitute for the attached file. This would save a lot of space on IMAP servers.
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Redundant for you, perhaps. The issue with the link is, what happens if the file is moved or deleted? Or even just not moved to the new device along with the mail store?
The attached file is oft-times the email really, the email body simply suggesting you review/read/examine/approve/ the attached. So without it, what is the real point of storing the original email?
For others, there are legal reasons that the email must be exactly the same as it was when sent. Or they digitally sign or encrypt mail and therefore it must remain identical for the mail to not raise flags about tampering or inability to decrypt.
I think the real issue is everyone is becoming a hoarder of old emails without any real archivingt process hence their IMAP servers needing huge storage.
Generally when you attach a file to an email, you keep that file on your computer. So there is no need to keep a copy of it in the sent folder. Only to keep the name of the file within the sent email.
At the moment I delete manually all attached files from the sent emails, which takes me quite some time. I would like an option to delete all files automaticaly.
Of course this has to be an option, that you would activate from the account preferences (where there is allready an option to have a copy of the sent email in a sent folder).