Dropbox is the granddaddy of cloud file storage apps, available for Windows, Linux, and Mac desktop computers, as well as iPhone and Android phones. The idea behind Dropbox is a simple one: After you install the application, a Dropbox folder appears on your desktop, and you can drag and drop and organize your files in that one folder, which is stored in the cloud. This means you can work with that folder on multiple computers or on your mobile device and your synchronized files are always just a click or tap away. Dropbox gives you 2GB of storage space when you sign up for a free account. If you want to increase the amount of space available for your files, you can upgrade to a Pro 50 account and get 50GB for $9.99 per month or get 100GB for a monthly fee of $19.99.
Google Drive’s standout features are its sharing and collaboration tools. Thanks to integration with Gmail and other Google services, you can share files with a click, with or without requiring a password. When you work with partners on the same word file, spreadsheet, or presentation, either separately or right at the same time, Google Drive marks the contributions of each person with different colored labels to make clear what has changed.
You could also just pass files back and forth via a service like MASV, if you’re sending archives of drafts and finished work to one another. It’s less useful if each client just wants to have a folder they can reference that’s full of everything you’ve worked on together: old and new projects, invoices, artwork, documents, spreadsheets, et cetera. Similarly, there’s Hightail—also worth considering, with the same kind of limitations.
Two of the oldest cloud storage file sharing platforms on the market nowadays are SugarSync and Box.com, both launched in 2005. Followed by Google Docs in 2006 and OneDrive in 2007. Dropbox has reached an incredibly high number of users, 300 million since launch in 2007. Google Drive has 240 million users and according to Microsoft, OneDrive has more than 250 million users. These applications have been highly adopted as they are very easy to use and accessible to anyone. With most vendors leading with their ‘Freemium’ pricing strategy, by which a product or service is provided free of charge, it’s a no-brainer for anyone who is looking to implement and trial cloud storage for themselves.
Amazon Abiquo Enterprise Edition CloudStack Citrix Cloud CtrlS DigitalOcean EMC Atmos Eucalyptus Fujitsu GoGrid Google Cloud Platform GreenButton GreenQloud IBM Cloud iland Joyent Lunacloud Mirantis Nimbula Nimbus OpenIO OpenNebula OpenStack Oracle Cloud OrionVM Rackspace Cloud Safe Swiss Cloud SoftLayer Zadara Storage libvirt libguestfs OVirt Virtual Machine Manager Wakame-vdc Virtual Private Cloud OnDemand
To access files and folder shared with you, you have to head to the OneDrive website or mobile app and look in the Shared section. Files and folders shared with you won’t be synced to your desktop, so you’ll need to use your browser to download such files and upload files to shared folders. As with Google Drive, Office Online also allows you to edit documents with other people in real-time.
Branko has a bachelor’s degree in software engineering and likes to write cloud storage, backup and privacy laws. Naturally, he thinks Assange and Snowden are champions of the internet age. In his spare time, he does all sorts of stuff, including photography, reading, salsa dancing and learning languages. He also likes barbecue, hiking, traveling and skiing. Favorite movie never made: Jodorowsky’s Dune.
If you don't yet have a service for storing and syncing your data in the cloud, you should seriously consider one. Which you choose depends on the kinds of files you store, how much security you need, whether you plan to collaborate with other people, and which devices you use to edit and access your files. It may also depend on your comfort level with computers in general. Some services are extremely user-friendly, while others offer advanced customization for more experienced technophiles.
Over the last decade, "the cloud" has become the latest business buzzword, sometimes to the point of confusion. Cloud storage, software, and computing might sound like jargon, but to businesses of all sizes, it's an important innovation that has led to increased data security, more reliable access to important files and a huge savings of time and money. What is cloud storage? Let's take a look.
You can store any kind of file in Dropbox, by either uploading to the website or adding it with the desktop apps. Those apps live in your file system so that you can easily move files from your computer to the cloud and vice versa by dragging and dropping them into your Dropbox folder. The service automatically and quickly syncs your files across all of your devices, so you can access everything, everywhere. There is no size limit on files you upload to Dropbox with the desktop or mobile apps, but larger files can take several hours to upload, depending on your connection speed.
Zoolz is less well known than other firms in this guide, but it's been operating for six years and has more than four million customers as well as high-profile business clients. It has decent feedback on Google reviews and specialist site Cloudwards. As with all storage services though there's always some element of risk, so weigh this up before uploading any sensitive documents.
No, Dropbox doesn't have many bells or whistles. No, it doesn't offer the most storage for free or the least amount of money. All it does is let me create, add, delete, move, copy, edit, whatever file and directories just as if they were any other file on my system. It doesn't matter if I'm using Linux, Mac, or Windows, or most smartphones or tablets; it just works with my device's native interfaces. That means I don't have to think about how to use it, I just use it. That makes it a winner in my book.
Your security might be sufficient, but that doesn’t mean it guarantees your privacy. It’s no secret that governments spy on their citizens, thanks to laws such as the USA PATRIOT Act and CLOUD Act. The PRISM surveillance program in the U.S. is one example of that. With those in play, it’s paramount that you ensure the privacy of your information on the web.