Free Online storage solution needed.

Discussion in 'backup, imaging & disk mgmt' started by Reggy_Simpson, May 26, 2009.

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  1. Reggy_Simpson

    Reggy_Simpson Lurker

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    I am currently looking out for a free online storage solution. I need to first need to check the application and then consider backing up my data. Mozy and Carbonite do not have any free storage area.. Can somebody make any suggestions?
     
  2. Reggy_Simpson

    Reggy_Simpson Lurker

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    Looking for free online storage solution. [duplicate threads merged]

    I am currently looking out for a free online storage solution. I need to first need to check the application and then consider backing up my data. Mozy and Carbonite do not have any free storage area.. Can somebody make any suggestions?
     
  3. King Grub

    King Grub Registered Member

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  4. GlobalForce

    GlobalForce Regular Poster

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  5. Creer

    Creer Registered Member

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    Also Microsoft offers Free space (25GB) in their service called Drive Space, which is available for everyone who has account on live.com
     
  6. LenC

    LenC Registered Member

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    Mozy gives you 2 gig free:

    https://mozy.com/registration/free

    I used it for a while - didn't like it. Went back to tried and true method of backing up to external HD and keeping copy out of the house in event of fire or theft.
     
  7. GlobalForce

    GlobalForce Regular Poster

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    Are you kidding ... Reggy guy's long gone! He was long gone :eek::D YESTERDAY! - "Well I'll be ..."
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  8. Reggy_Simpson

    Reggy_Simpson Lurker

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    Thanks guys for the valueable contributions to my question. Thanks for the suggestions.

    I would like to go for a tool that provides mobile access since I am a frequent traveller. I need a tool specifically that can be used on my BlackBerry using which I would be able to download my important stuff. I did check live.com but I am not sure if they have a mobile version using which I would be able to access files on my BlackBerry
     
  9. Tony

    Tony Registered Member

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    Hi Reggie.

    Have a look here
    http://home.mobile.live.com/home.mvc/ShowServicesIntroduction/Home

    And here
    http://windowslive.com/online/skydrive

    It works for me :)
     
  10. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    There are many great solutions out there. I've recently tried about twenty of them or so for an article I'm writing for my newspaper, so if you need more info please don't hesitate to PM me. There are a couple that allow for mobile access via web interface. Try these for starters, I think you'll be pleasantly surprised; SugarSync, Humyo, and Jungle Disk. I current use, and am very happy with Humyo, which offers a premium account giving you encryption and 100 gb of space for $7 USD /month.
     
  11. Steven Avery

    Steven Avery Registered Member

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    Hi Folks,

    For the free smaller stuff, I find DriveHQ to be fantastic. (They put a pause in an upload or download at 50 Mg, I am not sure of other limits, I would have no hesitation in getting the paid account .. and using it for larger backup.). The main reason I like it is that it gives you a PC client that is dual-pane Total Commander style. Very sweet. When I want to do a quick upload .. e.g. my bookmark-PIM program Linkman .. that I will pick up at work, it starts even quicker than putting in a USB-stick. (Although the upload takes a smidgen longer, I can be merrily done and gone if in a rush out the door.) Another thing I liked .. once when I was at a library in another city and didn't have an account anywhere .. I got up and running in minutes. Still have the same account.

    n8chavez, if you could list any others that have this feature about the dual-pane file manager running on client-side (your PC) - it would be most appreciated. Free available or not.

    Note: I remain a smidgen skeptical of the "synche" services (SugarSync, Synchronicity, and Dropbox) - I wonder if they always tell right what was added, what was deleted and what went out for lunch.

    All of this is one reason why I try to get almost all my important savable data (except maybe email) into my own "User Data" folder directly under c:/ . Then I can simply drag and drop into a USB or a net backup. This fits perfectly with dual pane.

    Shalom,
    Steven Avery

    PS.
    Note: Caution on IDrive. It is one that simply does far too much in your startup sections. Unless someone explains a compelling reason, there is about 5-6 or 7 distinct things going on. Ugh.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  12. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    I will have to consult my notes on that one, as I don't remember there being any others off the top of my head. Would that be as bog of an issue if you were to use a service that featured mapped drives; your online storage space mapped as a drive letter on your system? Two that I mentioned before, Jungle Disk and Humyo, have that feature.

    I do remember that DriveHQ offers very little space for the cost.

    Every service is going to act a little differently. Humyo, for instance, offers very limited software options (syncing of "pairs", pause, and proxy configuration) because the services uses a feature rich web interface and virtual mapped network drives.

    Syncing features can be very nice, but also very tricky. There are two types of syncing ability; block-level and, well, not. I prefer services that do not make use of block-level syncing. The reason for that is because it would be very hared to tell when (and if) a file had been changed on the server as it has been on my drive. I prefer to have the the entire file uploaded again to be on the safe side. That will use more bandwidth, so make sure you account for that when selecting a service. There are also differences in in service "syncing." Some, like Jungle Disk, upload changes to your storage space at an interval. Others, like SugarSync, Humyo, and Memopal, will upload changes virtually as soon as changes are made to a directory that you have setup in the software.

    There are advantages and disadvantages to all of them, which I'd be happy to discuss with whomever wants to know.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2009
  13. Steven Avery

    Steven Avery Registered Member

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    Hi Folks,

    The mapping of the storage space as a drive would be fine. In fact, maybe even better than the proprietary client software .. since it should be easier to interface with Total Commander, Backup4All and various other programs you use. A third similar possibility is the dual-pane managers in FTP clients, yet that is usually not very elegant and versatile.

    Humyo hit some real roadblocks and landmines when discussed in the comments in Lifehacker last year.

    Humyo Provides 30GB of Free Online Storage
    http://lifehacker.com/397108/humyo-provides-30gb-of-free-online-storage

    Maybe it is different today, but even the client drive-mapping software seemed to be paid edition only, after a trial period.

    Jungle Disk - I haven't felt to try the vendors who piggy-back on another, like Amazon or Google. However it does seem that the competition has led to better interface, JungleDisk/S3

    And S3/Fox Organizer.
    http://www.s3fox.net/ Worthy of a try.

    Here is one of the Lifehacker notes (2007) from their JungleDisk discussion.

    Create easy online backups with Jungle Disk and Amazon S3
    http://lifehacker.com/255461/create-easy-online-backups-with-jungle-disk-and-amazon-s3

    "Bingodisk and Strongspace .... Coupled with SyncBackSE and WebDrive or SftpDrive, you've got a pretty nice (and fast) setup."

    Notice how they are talking about using a dedicated backup software (SyncBackSE). That is neat, and the way I would most want to go. However these services look like they have large costs when used for dedicated backup.

    And another note points out the solidity and interface of DriveHQ

    "Unless you feel your time doesn't worth any money, I will stick with DriveHQ Online Backup service ( http://www.drivehq.com ). They've got the best software and features, I particularly like the fact that they can backup my Outlook emails. They do offer free 1GB service, but their business model is for users to upgrade to premium service, which I am very glad to pay for a good service."

    Nice explanation above .. and agreed.

    Shalom,
    Steven
     
  14. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    This is where this discussion can get very interesting, yet at the same time very frustration and confusing. You'll want to find that perfect balance for you and your individual needs.

    I chose Humyo, after trialing many others because it was right for me; it offered features that I couldn't find elsewhere that I thought I would make use of, such as streaming media, the ability to generate links and share data, and a mobile phone interface. They offer a home user premium account giving you 100 gb for $7.00 per month. That's about the cheapest I've found that was wasn't simply an unlimited domain using WebDAV.
    Jungle Disk, while very good, did not offer those features, and should be though of only as a skimpy featured backup service. Jungle Disk offers syncing, block-level updates and a virtual mapped drive. That's pretty much it. But they are backed by Amazon S3 (Rackserver), so you can be sure that they are very reliable. They offer unlimited @ $0.15 /gb per month + $2.00 per month. It is very cheap.

    SugarSync is another service that is very good, and very feature rich. It has the best web interface I've seen and the best mobile access features, with the ability to generate and send links to data you wish to send right from your phone. They also allow you to stream your mp3s to your mobile device. However, their software is not the best; it can be quite resource intensive. They offer 60 gb for $10.00 per month.

    There are still other things to consider, such as reliability and security. You want to be sure that the service you select will be around for a long time. Online storage services, while relatively new, are rather common. A lot of them have come and an equal amount of them have left the scene. In this case it's important to go with the one that has the reputation and a large number of users. Rackspace is not going anywhere. Humyo advertises that they have 400,000 + users. That's important. Your data needs to be there when you need to access it.

    Security is also important, and by that I mean encryption. Does the service offer transfer encryption? What about encryption while the data is stored? What strength of key are they using? What sort of server setup are they using; is it RAID or in chunks per user? You need to know who will have access to your data? For instance, Humyo offers transfer encryption but not storage encryption. But, in my opinion that is not needed since files are not stored in a simple directory on a server, but distributed across storage servers using a proprietary platform. A file on a server has just a number, so it would not be possible to know what software to open that file with, or to differentiate your file from any other user's file.

    It's a lot to think about. But it's all very important if you're like me and are looking for the ultimate off-site storage for your data. Should the worst happen, how you need to know you can get your data back.
     
  15. connect4

    connect4 Registered Member

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    n8chavez, great information. Thank you.


    What intrigues me is the concept of "virtual mapped drive." It sounds very convenient.

    Does that mean that instead of only having c: or d: physical drives, I will have another "H:" drive on my "My Computer" that is actually an "online drive."? Which I can "sync" back and forth between different computers?
    Please correct me if I am wrong.

    And in regards to security:

    If I were to use TrueCrypt and copy my Encrypted Container into the "Virtual Mapped drive H:" I know that the file itself will be safe depending on how much encryption security you have on the container itself (AES 256 bit 9 mill character passkey etc etc vs Generic 16 bit encryption 2 character password).

    But, what happens when you "MOUNT" the container while it is stored/sync'd on the "online drive H:" Is this safe? I mean, for example let's say worst case scenario, while your "True crypt container is mounted" on the online server/storage, and somehow someone stole // was able to access your container *WHILE it was currently Mounted, can they access all the information/data in your container?


    2nd question:
    Let's say for example, if we use Humyo. You said that they offer transfer encryption but not storage encryption.

    What exactly does that mean? Does that mean that while transfering my data is safe. But once stored, its not encrypted? If a hacker / employee somehow accesses the information, it is unencrypted and your files are breached?
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2009
  16. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    A mapped network drive does function just like any other drive on your system. In the case of Humyo, the network drive is mapped to your storage space and functions like any other drive; meaning that things can be copied to in and from it. But that ability has nothing to do with syncing. That is another feature of the Humyo software, but if unrelated to mapping. Directories that are synced, or "paired" as Humyo calls them, will be shown in the mapped network drive, but not everything in that drive will be synced.

    I am not sure Humyo has the ability to sync between different computers. That's not to say that more than one system cannot be used with the same Humyo account, but I'm just not sure that if you put a file in your Humyo account that'll it'll be synced to any but the original system. I might be wrong though. A nice workaround might be to use the same pair name on both systems.

    I have not tried mounting TC volumes from a mapped network drive but I would not recommend it.


    Not at all. The system uses a permission structure to safeguard file access. Files are continuously backed-up behind firewalls. Load balancers and fully n+1 redundant server clusters ensure constant availability even in the event of equipment failure. Each file is held on multiple independent storage clusters with continuous back up. Meaning that you've got 100 gb space, but just where that is on the physical discs is unknown. It is not as though the disk is sliced into 100 gb chunks, each reserved for a user. Files are not stored in a simple directory on a server, but distributed across storage servers using a proprietary platform. A file on a server has just a number, so it would not be possible to know what software to open that file with, or to differentiate your file from any other user's file without referring to the main database which holds this information.


    Humyo employees are unaware of your password. Humyo does not store your password, just the checksum of it.
     
  17. connect4

    connect4 Registered Member

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    Hi n8chavez,

    Thank you for your reply. This is a late reply but I still had questions regarding your replies, if its okay with you:
    (I know its been such a long time since your post but hopefully you see my post here....)

    In particular, I was confused about how they (Humyo) offered transfer encryption but not storage encryption and you explained that their storage system was still secure even if it wasn't encrypted.

    Now I didn't know exactly what that meant, but I know that you meant there was some sort of level of security with my files I uploaded to Humyo.

    Although I wanted to ask you to elaborate a little bit and in order to help me understand just EXACTLY how secure my files / information is:


    let's compare their security system towards something I have a good understanding of, encryption:


    Example: If I knew that their storage security was 256 Bit AES encryption, I would know my data is pretty much safe assuming I had a strong passphrase.


    Now, comparing Humyo's storage security systems with strong encryption:
    If I were to upload sensitive information that was not encrypted, would my data stored on Humyo be as secure as 256 Bit AES encryption?


    Some things that concerned me were:

    1) on their website they mention...

    "Our personnel cannot see your files unless you authorise them to do so. Your interaction with our people will be friendly but secure as you contact us via support ticket."

    Does this mean they need a password from me? Or just my authority? And if all they needed was my permission and not a password, doesn't that mean someone can access my files (illegally) and just "say" I had Connect4's permission?

    2) "A file on a server has just a number, so it would not be possible to know what software to open that file with, or to differentiate your file from any other user's file"....

    This doesn't mean that if I had a plain .txt file with sensitive information, that it could be easily read even though they can't link the file to my account right? The file would still have my sensitive information in unencrypted form.... maybe I am misunderstanding this concept...


    3) "Humyo employees are unaware of your password. Humyo does not store your password, just the checksum of it."

    Can we be sure of this? How do we know?
     
  18. Osaban

    Osaban Registered Member

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    Re: Looking for free online storage solution.

    Another vote for ADrive, no problems, nothing installs on your system, I'm thinking of giving them a retainer as I'm quite happy with their free service (one gets encryption with a paid service).
     
  19. n8chavez

    n8chavez Registered Member

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    I'm not exactly sure whether or not Humyo offers storage encryption. I do know that they have been undergoing s lot of upgrades recently, inmcluding infrastructure and software client. Humyo itself does not state whether or not they offer storage encryption, which I think means very little. There are several reviews from reputable publications that state that Humyo does indeed offer 256-bit AES storage encryption.

    Please keep in mind that everything I'm saying now corresponds to the premium service. Humyo does offer traffic encryption. That can be verified by using connection monitors and packet sniffers.

    That means that, regardless of encryption, it would be very difficult for anyone that does not have the password to isolate a certain file within a given storage account, simply because there is no way of knowing which server and the specific location of a file on that server.

    Agreed. The password being the big key there.


    For clarifications sake, your asking that if you uploaded a file that was not previously encrypted with a third-party encryption program, such as TrueCrypt, would that data be safe. Correct? If that is the case I would say yes. If my earlier point in this reply is correct then it would be like having a 100 gb TrueCrypt encrypted volume.

    Let me be very clear here, no online storage company will ever ask for a user's password. Period. If you come across a situation where you are asked that then you need to report the operator and immediately terminate your account after first having deleted your stored data.

    You are correct in assuming that they need your permission in order to access your account. But keep in mind that there is a difference between accessing you account and accessing your data.

    Please read my explanation above.


    The short answer is, you don't. There has to be some level of trust here. But that should be nothing new given the day and age in which we live. How can we be sure that your bank will not give out your credit card information or that you email is not being read by someone other than you. Are you sure that your cell phone is not being tapped into? Do you understand my point? Trust, to some extent must exist. You quoted Humyo company policy, and I'm afraid that's all I can give you. That is their official stance on things, but that does not take in to account the individual who, however minute the change, might not adhere to that policy. In short, there is no possible way for any data company to give you a guarantee.
     
  20. acr1965

    acr1965 Registered Member

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    I am pretty illiterate about the online backup stuff but I do have a skydrive account because I have a live id. I thought there was a free program out a few months back that automatically uploaded to skydrive. I looked on google but cannot find it now. Anyone know what I'm talking about?

    I am also considering that Adrive site. Is there a file size limit per file? And what is a very simple program to use to backup photos, documents, videos, mp3's, etc to the online storage?

    I use Karen's Replicator for backing up to my external hard drive. And KR is very simple to use. No compression, encription, verification (that I'm aware, anyway). I would not be opposed to paying for a good backup program that could save to my external hard drive and online. Just something simple is what I need.
     
  21. acr1965

    acr1965 Registered Member

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    Before I get too carried away with downloading/uploading stuff, does anyone know if this program will upload files to online storage?

    http://www.acebackup.com/index.htm

    Also, anyone else use the AceBackup program as a backup tool?
     
  22. hello2007

    hello2007 Guest

    which free one uploads fastest?
     
  23. TairikuOkami

    TairikuOkami Registered Member

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    Reporting back from www.onlinestoragesolution.com - well 15$ per years is like for free, but web based login, which contains all vital info (like all ways how to connect), does not work most of the time (screen), I only got FTP client working so far. Upload speed is reasonable for me, I was able to upload 2GB file in about 3 houres (my UL is 1,5 MBit). The download speed is what brings it down. Check screen for yourself, I would have to wait about ~9 houres to download that 2GB file, that is 3x more than it took to upload (my DL is 15 MBit). So I would be able to backup all my files, but in order to restore them, I would have to wait forever.
     
  24. korben

    korben Registered Member

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