Data Storage: I see it all the time, someone comes in to the shop to have their computer looked at and gets the awful news that their hard drive has failed. It’s not something anyone wants to deal with and if you have irreplaceable pictures, videos or documents they can all be gone within seconds. Hard disk drives are mechanical and thus prone to failure. A good bump while your computer is running is enough to cause permanent damage and potentially cost you thousands of dollars for data recovery. Solid State drives are a new resilient figure in storage technology, and while they are resistant to most shock and have zero moving parts, they can absolutely ruin your day as well. Solid state drives have been known to encounter a problem and be blank in a matter of seconds as well, which might be simply not recoverable. The solution is cloud based data storage, the problem is who do you trust with your life’s music, moments and work.
Dropbox is the data storage giant that I hear about the most. While it is the most widely known I personally am not sure about their security. Dropbox gives you about 5GB free to start out with (pretty standard) but also gives a nice friend referral bonus of 500MB per friend that joins up. The rest of the plans are about par for the course coming in at $99 a year for 100GB of data storage, which can also be paid month-by-month. The only thing I don’t like about Dropbox is their website is a little stuffy. To get help you have to submit a help request, or you can browse the forums for information. If you’re looking for simplicity look no further, although to me it feels more like a locker crammed with your files. Dropbox does have an app that will auto-upload your camera roll, I know mine is always packed!iDrive is a simple online data storage solution that comes with 5GB for free. This site boasts private key encryption and makes it plain that no one sees your data (which you should already be doing all the time) which get you 20% off all day every day. They also have live chat for customer service and technical support thats open 24/7. I heard about iDrive on the radio and thought I’d check it out, the paid plans are the cheapest I’ve seen from a reputable company at $49.50 for 150GB which is fantastic. They are known to run half price specials occasionally. They also give you 1GB of data storage per referral, yup 1GB per referral and you get little ½ Gigs for doing simple things like following on twitter, or installing the mobile or desktop app. Box.com is a pretty nifty online data storage utility that gives you 10GB free up front. Other than that its mainly focused for a business, its highly customizable in that regard. While you do get a generous starting capacity of 10GB, it doesn’t look like they offer any freebie upgrades like the others. This looks like an excellent program to use in a pinch if you have a large camera roll needing backed up. One cool feature they have in the paid subscriptions ($10 for 100GB) you have the option to search full text throughout your files and pictures and documents. This would come in handy if you knew you wrote the paper about Freud but you can’t remember what the title was. Just start typing Freud and you’ll have it.
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