Sunday, February 02, 2014

Seven Top Cloud File Storage and File-Sharing Sites

Cloud-based file storage and transfer solutions change all the time, and it's often hard to keep up with their new features and plans. Here are seven excellent providers of cloud file storage and transfer, and each one has scalable solutions. I've made a quick list of their main attributes, but I encourage you to visit each site. Please share your own user experience, and let me know what you think.

50GB of online cloud storage. Free. Can file share quite easily. Edit documents online. Remote file transfer. Easy search tool. If you wish to share a file, you may do so via a link that is created when you upload our file. 

** 50GB storage free
**Easy file-sharing via link
**Edit word processing, spreadsheets, and presentations online. Uses Zoho. 
**Search your files via search tool
**Can remotely transfer files from external websites to your ADrive account

Google Drive:  
5 GB of free storage / very convenient for sharing access to files. It is very simple to put files into the cloud, either by uploading them, or by dragging them from your desktop. File-sharing is also very simple. However, one should be a bit cautious, since it is distressingly easy to inadvertently share with your Google+ contacts or other individuals in social networks. You must be very careful review what you’re checking and giving permission for.  

**Easy to upload using your Google account
**Can email notifications of file sharing very easily
**Mobile app
**Interfaces with Google Docs for easy editing / collaboration

With, an individual may have a free account with 10GB storage space, and a 250MB file upload size. It’s very easy to use for file sharing, transfer, and storage. If you’re working with a team, however, it would probably not be a bad idea to upgrade to the $5/month version which allows you 100GB of storage, and a 2GB file transfer size. You can lock files, run access statistics, and also grant individual permissions.  

**Mobile apps
**Desktop sync
**Good file preview options 
**SSL encryption
**can share links / embed via email or social media
**can share / edit using online collaboration 

Hightail (formerly known as YouSendIt):
2GB free, file size up to 250 MB. I'm not sure why YouSendIt would change their snappy name to something like Hightail. The emphasis is on speed ("hightailing it" suggests moving at a high rate of speed).  I like the idea of a "high tail" in conjunction with a "long tail" -- cloud plus persistence?  Hightail is very easy to use for file transfer. You don't have to worry about old files haunting you or bloating your storage space -- your files will automatically be eliminated after a certain amount of time. 

**Easy drag-and-drop approach
**Simple interface
**Works on multiple devices

5 GB free. Good for cloud-based backup for personal and enterprise computers. Need to download apps.  Here are the unique comparative advantages of iDrive:

**Very fast (incremental and compressed backups)
**Can backup multiple devices (PCs, Macs, iPhones, and Android devices) in a single account
**Can manage remotely
**Can backup Facebook information

Can automatically back up documents, photos, and music stored on your computer.  JustCloud seems to focus more on business solutions, with $19.95 per month for 100GB storage space and 5 computers. There is a free solution, but unless one signs up, it's impossible to obtain information. 

2 GB free. Expensive to add more storage. Can be a bit nerve-wracking / integrates with social media (Google Plus, etc.) Dropbox has great brand recognition, but is probably one of the most expensive. The website pretty unfriendly, too. It’s challenging to get a side-by-side comparison of the plans. 

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