What's the best cloud storage service?

Can you guys recommend a cloud storage service? I have read things saying DropBox was good, but of course wanted to get the Dopers’ opinions first. Anything you could tell me will be helpful: ease of use, cost, etc.

I am basically looking to back up all my files, which mostly consist of a ton of photos, so that if my house burns down I won’t have lost all my important stuff.

Thanks in advance!

I love DropBox. I can’t really compare it to much other than Google Drive (which sucks, IMO), and I’m not paying them for storage. But I love that I can access my files from anywhere. Desktop PC, Mac, iPhone, iPad, or some other random computer far from home… all have DropBox capability and it makes working from home a lot easier.

If you have less than 100GB Dropbox is fine. Over that you probably want to look at Crashplan or Carbonite.

How many clouds did you want to store?

Dropbox is a great service, but out of the box it isn’t really designed to be a file backup service. Mozy, Carbonite, and Crashplan all do a better job of that. I was once a Mozy user but they jacked up the price quite a bit if you used >50GB, so I switched to Crashplan, which was the cheapest. No complaints about crashplan and I keep 101.7 GB backed up there right now.

I use Mozy and the nice thing is that it automatically backs up the folders I’ve specified. Any new files such as photos are backed up. I’ve successfully restored individual files, but never tried a mass restore. If you just want to back up a static group of photos, it might be better to copy the folders to several external hard drives, and to store one in a fireproof safe at home, a second perhaps at work and maybe a third in a bank safe deposit box (I’m a big believer in redundancy). You can get one-terabyte external drives for under a hundred dollars.

As others have said, DropBox is great but isn’t really a backup service. I use Carbonite and have been very happy with it. $60/yr and unlimited storage. The only problem is that they start capping your upload speed once you go over a certain threshold (100 GB, IIRC). Not a big deal since it just runs constantly in the background.

Can you go into pros and cons with these? Do you like one better than the other? Do they offer incremental backup, or live sync, do they offer file rollback to previous versions, what’s their impact on computer speed while operating in the background?

I’d love to have cloud/offsite backup for my files, but most of the space is occupied by large files like photos (RAW, not JPG), design files (PSD, EPS, etc.) and videos/video project files. I backup to an external drive at this point, and it’s a solid 250Gig and growing.

I think my biggest challenge will be a service I can afford. :stuck_out_tongue:

Dropbox is a good way to have some files available across multiple computers.

It’s also a good way to share files with friends or colleagues that are too big to e-mail, by “sharing” a folder with other users. However, one really annoying problem is that any of those users can delete the files in the shared folder, and it’s also very easy to delete files by mistake - all it takes is to drag-and-drop the file from the shared folder onto a local folder. I’ve gotten so frustrated with this that I gave up using it for sharing files with colleagues.

I’ve been trying SugarSync, which has more features than Dropbox but also a bit more complicated to use. I haven’t used it for sharing files with others, but I know it does have an option to make files read-only.

Anyway… As others already pointed out, these cloud storage services are really for making files accessible from different computers and/or different users. They are not designed for online backup of your PC.

I use Dropbox and Google Drive. The former for a few files I like to have synced between computers because Dropbox sync is very good. The latter, I use for bulk storage of backups of my music and photos because it’s cheaper per GB.


I have no interest in backups on the cloud as it will suck up my internet quota too easily. Another flaw is that if anyone else puts files into a shared folder, they get counted against my download quota too, which means on occasion multi-gigs can disappear without my say so or ability to stop it from my end, so that’s something I have to make clear from the start…