Generally, we use personal computers and thumb drives to store useful and personal files. Although it is safe and secure enough but its limitation is that you cannot access your files, if you are not at home and even you may lose all of your data if your device gets crashed accidently. In such case cloud storage services may be beneficial for you. In this article, we will get familiar with some of the best cloud storage services.
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What is Cloud?
Cloud is nothing but server based storage technology which stores your data in the server of cloud service provider. It allows you to access all your files remotely from anywhere on any device.
Cloud services provide flexibility to store files of all size in any format. Cloud services help to reduce local storage and act as online backup for accidental data loss due to the system crash. You can access your files easily in the cloud using app or software, given that you must have working internet connection.
Cloud service may be paid or free. Some cloud service allows you to store the limited amount of data in free version, later you can upgrade to paid version. Keep reading to know about best cloud storage service and file syncing service in 2016-17.
Dropbox is a one of the best cloud storage cloud storage and file syncing service available on all major platforms including Windows, Mac, BlackBerry, Android, iOS, Linux and Kindle Fire.
After downloading and installing dropbox client it automatically syncs with your PC. Now you have to just put files to upload in the folder named dropbox and everything will be done automatically. If you delete a file from that folder it will be deleted from cloud too. In this way, you can access your files both online and offline arranged in the same manner.
It is reliable with simple, easy to use user interface and provides both free and paid version. In the free basic account, you can store only 2GB data. You can get 250 MB more free data storage by taking a basic tutorial to use dropbox and 1GB more by signing up to mailbox account.
If you want more you can upgrade to paid account you have to pay $9.99 per month or $99.99 per year. In paid account, you can store data up to 1 TB. In paid version, you will get excellent live personal support which is not available in free version.
Dropbox provides a feature to share your documents with others in both free and paid account. But in the free account, you cannot set permissions, therefore, anybody can edit or delete shared files. In paid version you can set read-only permissions in shared files, even you can set a password and expiration timer in shared links.
Additionally, dropbox allows file recovery till 30 days. It is very useful if somebody deleted or edited your shared file. Good news is that this feature is available in free version also. Dropbox can be used to backup files from VPS Server. Files and documents in dropbox are strongly encrypted by AES 256-bit encryption technology which provides extra protection and makes your data secure.
So you can try the free version of dropbox if you need small space or you can go with paid one for more data space with additional features.
OneDrive is also a popular cloud storage service managed and powered by Microsoft and available for windows, Mac, Android, and iOS. It provides flexible service both in desktop and Smartphone.
You just need Microsoft account to access OneDrive. It offers 5GB of free storage in free basic version and up to 1 TB storage in paid version. It allows sharing and remotely accessing your files. Its real-time notification feature allows you to know when and by whom your shared document is edited or modified
OneDrive is pre-installed in windows 10 which automatically save documents and photos. It also provides useful features like music streaming, excellent photo presentation, shared desktop folder syncing similar to dropbox and full-document searching in shared files.
Photos saved in OneDrive are automatically tagged based on visuals and you can well organize your files in OneDrive albums. Data is protected and secured using AES 256-bit encryption technology. At the same time, Microsoft has right to look in your files for objectionable or copyrighted content.
You can try this secure and trusted cloud storage service.
Google Drive is online data storage service powered by tech giant Google and available on Windows, Mac, iOS, and android.
Google Drive provides smart and easy to navigate user interface. It is simplest and cheapest and possibly best of all cloud services. It offers 15 GB of free storage and 100 GB to 1 TB in paid account. To upgrade to paid account, you have to pay $2/month for 100 GB. Google Drive automatically integrates with Gmail, Blogger, Picasa web album and other services offered by google.
Google Drive provides compatibility to upload your file and convert them to Google's file format to edit them online. It offers a complete set of office tools like a word processor, spreadsheet application, and presentation builder at one platform which allows you to create and save documents in the web interface.
It syncs with your PC similar to Dropbox and OneDrive by creating local folders on your PC. All your files and documents in google drive are protected by 128-bit AES encryption technology. It also allows sharing of your files like other services.
Google Drive is best for you if you want trusted and cheap storage option along with many beneficial services by Google.
Mega is another good reputation cloud storage service working since 2013 and available for Windows, Mac, and Linux. It makes your files accessible to you anytime and everywhere.
Mega offers 50 GB free storage in the free version and up to 4 TB in pro version. Files in mega are protected by end-to-end encryption technology. Means documents are encrypted and decrypted during transfer of your files only by mega client installed in your device.
Mega allows file sharing with real-time updates and syncing services like Google Drive and OneDrive. It also provides browser extensions for Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome for fast loading and resilience against attacks. Its new encrypted communication package allows to chat, email, call and video conference securely.
pCloud is another personal and cloud storage service available on all major platform with a nice web interface.
It gives 20 GB of free storage in the basic account and you can upgrade to pro to get 500 GB data storage at $ 3.99 per month. pCloud offers secure payment options with 10 days money back guarantee if you are not satisfied by their services.
You can set permissions in shared files in both paid and free version. Free account users can restore their documents till 30 days while paid users can do same till 180 days. This service protects your file by transferring data using TLS/SSL protocols and the file is copied in about three super secure servers for file redundancy.
It offers an additional special feature crypto folder at $2.65/month in which your files are encrypted using 256-bit AES encryption technology. Therefore nobody can hack your data kept in this folder. You have your own 4096-bit RSA encryption key means even authorities of pCloud cannot see or check your files.
So pCloud may be suitable for you, if you want large cloud space in a simple and user-friendly platform.
Box is also a file uploading and syncing service since 2005 available on Windows, android, blackberry and iOS.
It offers a free version with storage of 10 GB and file size limit of 250 MB. In paid version, you will get 100 GB storage with file size limit of 5 GB. To upgrade to paid version you have to pay $11.50/month.
Like other syncing services you can integrate or sync it with your hard drive. You can view many file formats online without downloading and integrate box with a variety of apps including Office 365, Salesforce, NetSuite and Google's online office suite.
From point of privacy of your files, you can decide who can open, view or edit your files. It allows to you to set a password and expiration timer for individually shared files. Box uses multiple data centers with reliable power sources and backup systems for higher data redundancy.
This service may be the best alternative of other famous cloud storage service because of its fast, secure servers and lots of useful features.
Mediafire is also a trusted and widely used cloud storage and file sharing service by a Texan company.
It offers 10 GB of free storage in a free version and you can earn up to 50 GB by doing some social sharing. In the free account, you cannot upload files larger than 200 MB and ads are shown in shared links. But you can upgrade to the premium account at $ 3.75/month to get 1 TB storage. Also, ads are not shown in paid account.
In pro version, you can share files via direct downloadable links and one-time links which lets only one computer to download your file. Additionally, in paid version, you can upload a file of any type of size up to 4GB.
So you can try it if you generally share files on your blog or facebook.