The Best Cloud Storage and File-Sharing Services 2017 – Comparison

Google Drive vs Dropbox vs OneDrive

Cloud storage is almost a necessary part of digital life. It allows you to access files from anywhere if you can access your cloud account. No more having to remember to put important files on a flash drive to transport them. There are several different cloud storage companies to choose from. What are the Best Cloud Storage and File Sharing Services? Here in this guide we compare Dropbox, Box, and OneDrive.

Dropbox

When it comes to cloud storage, Dropbox is one of the most popular. For good reason, it was one of the first on the market. While Dropbox doesn’t offer the most space for their free accounts, they do offer a generous paid plan options for affordable monthly or yearly fees.

Security is on the top of everyone’s concern list. All of Dropbox’s plans have 256-bit AES and SSL/TLS encryption. Also, all plans allow for two-factor authentication. The service does offer HIPPA compliance. However, it is not available on free, pro, or standard services.

Dropbox allows you to share files stored on their service with others. To give you more security, you can set permissions such as view only or editing capabilities. You can also choose to password protect files shared and have the sharing links expire after a set time.

For standard and higher plans, you can set granular permissions for other users who may have access to the account. These plans are more for geared for business users instead of the personal user, however.

All Dropbox accounts are equipped with MS Office 365 integration and Dropbox Paper. Shared files can be commented on if permissions are set by the administrator.

Pros:

  • Easy Sharing
  • 256-bit AES Security
  • Expiring Shared Links
  • Two-Factor Authentication
  • Anytime access
  • Generous storage size, paid plans start at 1TB

Cons:

  • Free service is only 2GB
  • Pro plan only has 30-day version history and file recovery
  • Pro and Free plan only have email support
  • HIPPA support is only available for Advanced and Enterprise users

Paid Dropbox plans to start at $9.99 billed monthly or $99.99 billed annually with 1 TB storage. Larger storage sizes are available. While their Advanced and Enterprise service are geared for businesses, they do have a dedicated Dropbox for Business service for corporations.

Box

Box is a huge competitor for Dropbox. Like Dropbox, Box offers anywhere-anytime access to files stored within your cloud account. Box, however, prizes themselves in having tight security for all their accounts no matter which level you choose.

Box understands not all their clients are located in the United States and need differing security options. That is why the company has Processor Global Binding Corporate Rules and Controller Global Binding Corporate Rules in place for their European clientele. For Asia-Pacific users, the company has Assai-Pacific Economic Cooperation Cross-Border Privacy Rules systems and adhere to ISO 27018. Box also adheres to ISO 27001, SOC1, PCI DDS, FedRAMP, and HIPPA regulations. Customers outside the US can enjoy in-region storage in either Europe, Asia, Canada, or Australia. As with Dropbox, those interested in additional security can set up two-factor authentication.

Because the cloud is more than just for storage, Box makes it easy for account owners to share files with others. Files sharing via links or straight from your Box account allows you to get important documents where they need to go, even if they would normally be too big to send via email. With file-sharing, all users can see what changes are made and have access to the latest versions.

For those concerned about downloading large files, most file types are easily opened with Box. Supported types include Word, Excel, AI, ESP, PSD, and PDF. The service also supports photo files and more. With over 120 supported file types, you should not have to download a file or have the program on your system just to view it.

Pros:

  • Generous free service at 10GB
  • Paid services start at $10 for 100GB
  • SSL and at-rest Encryption
  • File versioning
  • Paid plan offers a 5GB file upload limit

Cons:

  • 250 MB file upload limit on free plans
  • Personal plans limited to either 10 or 100 GB

Box makes it easy to keep all your files secure and accessible from anywhere. As with their competitors, they do offer business plans for corporate users. These plans carry the same security but do require a minimum number of users to enroll.

OneDrive

OneDrive is Microsoft’s answer to online storage. As with Box and Dropbox, they offer online, PC, Mac, and mobile access to files from anywhere at any time. Because it’s Microsoft, it works seamlessly with all Office products.

Microsoft cares about security just like Dropbox and Box. While their security is not as sophisticated as Box, it is just as secure as Dropbox. They use 256-bit AES security to control their accounts. The service also provides two-factor authentication for online access.

Users can share files and folders with others. You set limitations on how the files are secured. You can restrict them to read-only or editable with the ability to download to another device. Files edited by other users will show what changes were made by whom.

Files created in OneNote can be backed up directly to OneDrive. Also, other files created by any Windows Store app can also be stored directly to the cloud storage service. From your OneDrive you can post photos to Facebook.

Pros:

  • 256-bit AES Security
  • 5GB Free
  • Additional Free storage available with Automatic Camera Roll Backup
  • Seamless Integration with Office Documents
  • Create Surveys with Excel

Cons:

  • Paid limited to 50GB unless you have Office 365
  • Scanning to upload to OneDrive and Excess sharing requires Office 365

Microsoft OneDrive might not be quite as good as Box. However, for loyal Microsoft users, it is the obvious choice as it easily allows all your services to integrate into one storage location. If you have an Office 365 account, you get additional storage along. Personal users get 1TB storage while Home users have access to up to 5TB. If you want to purchase a 50GB storage service instead of Office 365, it is affordable at only $1.99 per month.

All three have their strengths and weaknesses. No matter which one you choose, it is important to consider having a backup for your cloud service. While all service providers offer redundancy to ensure their servers never lose anything, it doesn’t stop you from accidentally deleting files. CloudAlly offers affordable backup options for all your cloud storage needs.

The Best Cloud Storage and File Sharing Services:

Try our automated FREE 14 day backup – Click Here

Microsoft SharePoint Backup Comparison (2017)

Microsoft SharePoint Backup – 2017 updates

CIO executives and IT managers are facing a tough decision selecting between SharePoint On – Premises, and SharePoint online of Office 365. This is much more apparent since 2013 when we reviewed the choices at hand.

It has been 4 years since we first brought you a comparison between SharePoint On-Premises and Office 365’s SharePoint Online. Since then, Microsoft has updated their SharePoint software with the new release of SharePoint 2016.

While a lot has stayed the same, the subtle changes might make a difference in determining which product best serves your needs.

Here is a basic overview of the primary differences between SharePoint Online and SharePoint On Premises:

Updates to SharePoint On-Premises

If you are familiar with SharePoint 2013, you may have some reservations about using the software on-premises. However, the 2016 release has many updates that make it more user-friendly.

One of the greatest updates that SharePoint 2016 has is the easier patching ability. Previous versions required IT personnel to take the server offline to perform updates. Now, installation of these patches occurs without taking the servers offline. These software updates help fix security holes and bugs.

Other notable updates include:

  • Improved naming system with shorter easier to understand names
  • Increased file size allowance
  • Increased storage number of records
  • Increased list threshold
  • Automatically updated links for relocated files
  • Faster search

SharePoint Backup
One other area Microsoft improved is the ability to use SharePoint 2016 on-site in a hybrid situation. Administrators can connect the on-premises SharePoint with online storage. Searches conducted include results from both online and on-site locations.

ProsCons
  • Full Customization
  • Increased Cost of workforce and equipment
  • Reduced Bandwidth (when not part of hybrid setup)
  • Redundancy required
  • Compliance with local security regulation
  • Scale up/out costs
  • Full Control
  • Additional set up for disaster recovery
  • Migrate when necessary

SharePoint Online

Microsoft is always working to make their Office 365 SharePoint better for their customers, with Cloudally’s Microsoft Sharepoint Backup the online option is extenuated, and adding hybrid compatibility for on-site SharePoint 2016 to work seamlessly is a huge upgrade. Also, it is important to mention that Microsoft has added security framework to make their Online Storage compliant with HIPAA, SSAE, and EU Model clauses to name a few.

ProsCons
  • Reduced workforce/hardware costs
  • Not controlled locally
  • Automatic updates
  • Greater bandwidth use
  • Anywhere access
  • Added storage costs
  • Complaint friendly
  • Limited customization
  • Enterprise grade security
  • Easy scale up/out

As Microsoft stores your files on their Azure servers, they offer automatic redundancies. These redundancies protect your data from loss due to hardware malfunction.

Overall Comparison

Sharepoint 2016 and SharePoint Online, via Office 365, operate the same. Users store documents and share them with their colleagues. Thanks to recent updates on both the onsite 2016 platform and Office 365 both programs can now work seamlessly together.

The following will help you with a better understanding of their differences.

CategoryOn-SiteOnline
CostRequires purchase of hardware and software license plus IT personnel to maintain systemAnnual subscription of Office 365 Plan billed per user
Deployment and MaintenanceIT personnel to deploy and manage farm, patches may be delayed due to workloadMicrosoft controls environment and installs patches when released
Business ContinuityDependent on internal capabilitiesBuilt-in redundancy and failover for data centers.
FeaturesSupport for Enterprise feature, with installation ofOffice web appLimited, preconfigured features
CustomizationFull server side code and client side code support.Full client side support. Limited server side support
SecurityDependent on internal capabilitiesEnterprise grade security
ComplianceDependent on internal capabilitiesEu Model Clauses, US-EU Safe Harbor Framework, HIPAA, FISMA, ISO 27001, FERPA, and SSAE16 compliant
StorageMore expensive storage devices with scalable size, more than 100GBCheaper costs, site collection up to 100GB, maximum content in single tenant Office 365 plan based.

Which Best Serves Your Needs

There are no absolutes when it comes to determining the best fit for your business. Online Sharepoint makes it easy for your employees to access the files they need from anywhere. The greater fluidity allows you to utilize a remote workforce in addition to your in-house personnel.

However, due to security regulations, some information cannot be stored in a cloud setting. That means you must invest in Sharepoint software housed in on-site servers. Local service limits your company’s ability to allow employees to work remotely.

Bottom Line

In most cases, the middle ground might be your best option. By investing in on-site Sharepoint 2016 software, you can house sensitive information locally. Storing sensitive documents on-premises can help you maintain compliance with government regulations.

However, employees can store data that does not contain restricted information in the cloud environment. Workers can then access these non-sensitive documents from anywhere. With Sharepoint 2016 and Office 365 both having hybrid capabilities you can have the best of both worlds.

Disaster Recovery in High Priority

Choosing to go with Microsoft Sharepoint Online backup is placing your disaster recovery in top priority and your recovery protocol in place. An online backup of all your Sharepoint files allows you to recover data lost due to viruses or human error, eliminating data center issues.

Without a 3rd party backup service, such as Cloudally, your company lacks protection against malicious attacks. Ransomware attacks can occur at any time, forcing you to pay a hefty price to recover your information. With a proper backup in place, you can recover compromised files without paying the enormous fees requested by the hackers.

CloudAlly offers continuous support with Microsoft SharePoint backup. Data is saved daily to your online depository. Files deleted from your Office 365 online account remain within your CloudAlly backup until you choose to remove them.

There is no way to know when a ransomware attack or malicious employee error may occur. However, having CloudAlly Sharepoint backup available can protect you. Learn on Microsoft SharePoint and Check out our FREE TRIAL.

7 Tips to Become “OneDrive for Business” Power User

We love OneDrive for Business.

Why? Simply because it enables us to work smarter and more effectively. OneDrive for Business helps us collaborate and manage the influx of data with ease.

However, we have encountered several clients who do not use it to its full potential. They have never explored the vast amount of capabilities offered by OneDrive for Business. So they do not use the capabilities that administrators can share with end users or implement to help boost adoption and create power users.

So, if you are an administrator or just a user, here are our top seven tips on how you can leverage OneDrive for Business to increase work productivity.


What this article is about:


Download OneDrive for Business Sync App to Work Offline

When you have internet connectivity, you can save, store and share data as well as do more things with OneDrive for Business. But, what if there is no internet connectivity?

Most businesses think there is no alternate option and stand idle, but that is not true. OneDrive for Business offers the sync app to help you work offline in similar the way that you perform your job online.  You can sync up to 20,000 files and folders in your OneDrive for Business library.

Here is a step-by-step guide on how you can work offline:

  • Step 1: Download the OneDrive for Business sync app.
  • Step 2: Log in to Office 365 and navigate to OneDrive.
  • Step 3: Locate the library you would like to access offline and press sync.

That’s it!

Also, if you accidentally initiate the syncing of your OneDrive for Business or encounter a low bandwidth issue, you can easily stop or pause your OneDrive for Business from syncing.

Get Organizational Insights with Office Delve

Microsoft launched Office Delve to simplify team collaboration which helps you observe what your team members are working on across Office 365. Delve also comes with OneDrive for Business integration feature to help you search and share documents easily; offers the benefits of both the project management tool and social networking in one place. It helps you search for information and people as well as share and group documents.

According to Microsoft, the technology behind Office Delve is Office graph which maps the relationships between content and people. Delve looks like a replica of Pinterest, as it comes with a card-based interface. Each “card” is made up of several details, such as views, tags, comments, and likes, and Delve shows you the importance of each card.

The cards are also dynamic which means you can click and immediately comment or edit the document once it is launched in Office 365. Here is what you need to do to explore Delve:

  • Step 1: Launch Delve.
  • Step 2: You will get several pop-ups which are tips and a quick introduction; follow them.
  • Step 3: Start exploring.

Save Email Attachments to OneDrive for Business

If you are an Office user, you would agree that you spend much of your workday using Outlook in sending and receiving emails and files, right? This is where One Drive for Business comes in making your job easy and stress-free.

You can save your email attachments in OneDrive for Business from the Outlook web app itself. You can then email them as a cloud attachment or move them to a different folder. In this way, you can access the files at any time and from anywhere without digging through all your emails to find it.

Moreover, you do not have to track and manage multiple versions which make collaborating on the files in Office Online or Office a lot easier. Here is how you can do this:

  • Step 1: Open the email with the attachment(s) you want to save.
  • Step 2: Click the attachment and then select “Save to OneDrive”. This is applicable if you want to save a single attachment. If you want to save all the attachments, just select “Save all to OneDrive”.

All your attachments will then be saved in the email attachment folder in OneDrive and you can send them as cloud attachments or move them from folder to folder within OneDrive.

Using Version Control to Identify Changes in a Document

If you want to stay up to date with the latest amendments made to a document by you or your co-authors, then version control is the way to do it. Here is what you need to do to harness the benefit of version control:

  • Step 1: First enable it in OneDrive for Business by selecting any file in your library and then clicking Files>Version History.
  • Step 2: Contact your administrator to enable it, if you see the version history is grayed out.

If you are an administrator, you can delete or enable the version history from an entire library or list. You can also configure the version control settings to save a new version after every edit. In addition, being an administrator, you can set a version cap, which will ensure that the oldest version of a document gets deleted once a certain threshold has been reached.

  • Step 3: Once enabled, you can view, delete or restore a previous document version.

If you are an administrator and your organization uses both OneDrive for Business and SharePoint Server 2010 or SharePoint Online, then this tip is for you. You can configure a link within your organization’s SharePoint that will send users directly to their OneDrive for Business accounts. In this way, end users can quickly transition from SharePoint to OneDrive for Business with ease. Needless to say, this will improve the overall productivity and efficiency of the organization.

Here is a Technet article that provides detailed instructions to help you set this up.

Access OneDrive for Business on Your Mobile Device

OneDrive for Business comes with a mobile app for Android, Apple, and Windows mobile devices. This means that you can access it, even when you are on the move. However, because these apps have specifically been designed for on-the-go working, they are less powerful compared to the desktop or web-based counterparts. Yet, it still offers some built-in capabilities that prove to be beneficial on mobile devices.

For example, if you want to access your commonly used documents quickly, you can simply pin the folder in your Android home screen. Also, you can use iOS Touch ID or set up a pin to strengthen the security when accessing OneDrive documents.

Create and Host an Online Survey

Do you want to gauge your employees’ satisfaction or do you want to make a list of who will cater to your next big event? You can do all this right from your OneDrive account. All you need to do is create a survey with Excel online. In this way, you can record everyone’s responses into a single online spreadsheet. Here is how you can do it:

  • Step1: Sign in to OneDrive for Business.
  • Step 2: Click “New” and then “Excel survey”.
  • Step 3: Create your survey.

You can drag questions up and down, preview what your recipients will see, and edit and share the survey by creating a link to your form.


Now that you know more about how to become a power user of OneDrive for Business, you might want to have a look at what we created for you…

L4-SharePoint-OneDrive-Backup-DataSheet-squared

7 Key Announcements Made at Microsoft Ignite 2015

Microsoft Ignite

Last week, Microsoft organized its first Ignite conference in Chicago, Illinois with 23,000 attendees, Microsoft Ignite. The objective of Ignite was to replace the other professional conferences that Microsoft hosts such as TechEd, with one single event. Unlike Build 2015, which primarily catered to developers, Ignite aimed to help IT professionals deliver innovative technology.

Microsoft made several significant announcements in over 200 sessions.  We have complied for you, the top seven that will have the most impact in the technology industry.

SharePoint 2016

Microsoft promised to offer better support for embedded video, an intuitive admin portal, and improved people experience with Delve, Microsoft’s newest technology.

Storing files across devices with OneDrive, as a replacement of your organization’s file server is now available. You can also expect to witness improved reporting and auditing of changes to files.

New features like governance controls and personalized discovery experiences, strengthen enterprise search. You can also expect an improved user experience with more advanced collaboration and personalized insights.

One significant improvement was Zero Downtime Patching. This means updates that are critical to the operating system’s health will be pushed and delivered in one go, without affecting the end user.

Another improvement is the new Server Role Selection when configuring a new SharePoint Some other features revealed are:

  • SharePoint 2016 will support Windows 10 and Windows Server 2012 R2
  • Hardware requirements for SharePoint 2015 will be same as SharePoint 2013
  • Support of non-default SMTP ports and SARTTTLS to encrypt connections
  • Standalone instructions will no longer be supported with SharePoint 2016
  • ODF support
  • Upgrade directly from SharePoint 2010 to SharePoint 2016

We expect there will be more updates or announcements about SharePoint 2016 between Q1 and Q2 of 2016.

Skype for Business

In April 2015, Microsoft launched Skype for Business, and at Ignite, they talked about modern meetings, an improved meeting feature that will help you collaborate easily with participants sitting in multiple locations. It was also announced that later in 2015, it would enable users to broadcast Skype for business meetings to up to 10,000 participants at a time.

Two new features were announced that are pre-loaded meeting attachments, which will speed up meeting start times, as it will show the meeting content automatically at the beginning of the call.

Another was in-call co-authoring. It will help initiate co-authoring sessions easily so that multiple participants can work or collaborate on a single document right from within the meeting itself while everyone sees the changes happening live.

SharePoint Backup
Skype for Business will be available on iOS and Android, by fall 2015, and for Mac, by the end of 2015.

You can also expect some enterprise voice features such as call parking, call forwarding, audio conferencing, and PSTN calling by the end of 2015.

Office 2016 Public Preview

At Ignite, Microsoft released a preview of its much-awaited product, Office 2016. If you are an Office 365 user, you can use it for free, or you can test it out with a free trial.

Here is a quick glimpse of what Office 2016 is expected to bring in:

  • Ability to access documents anywhere, on any device
  •  Real-time co-authoring to the Windows Desktop application, starting with Word 2016
  • Smart applications such as Tell Me, Clutter, and Insights
  • Advanced modern charts and graphs such as Waterfall, TreeMap, and Sunburst
  •  Outlook Multi-factor authentication through integration with Active Directory Authentication
  • Library (ADAL)

You can find more details here and you can download the Office 2016 preview here.

Windows Update for Business

Windows 10 for Business has been a matter of discussion among IT pundits since it was announced last September, and at Ignite, Microsoft announced a new management option for Windows 10 – Windows Update for Business.

This will give better control to administrators, as it will allow them to decide which branch offices and PCs will receive which updates first. It will also help specify time frames for when these updates should be installed. The best part is that it will help deliver updates to remote sites and branch offices with

limited bandwidth, efficiently. Windows Update for Business is free for Windows Enterprise and Windows Pro, and Microsoft claims that it will offer better control of update deployment, reduce management expenses, and provide

quicker access to security updates. If you want to know more about Windows 10 for Business, visit the Microsoft Blog post, or join the Windows 10 Insider Program.

Office 365 Update

Microsoft announced several updates about Office 365, which showed how this 800-pound gorilla trying to improve information control and transparency within Office 365. Here are a couple of those updates.

  •  File-level encryption across email and content
  •  Office 365 groups will be integrated with Dynamics CRM, showing documents, conversations
  • Office 365 groups are now a part of Outlook 2016 Preview
  • New mobile apps will soon be launched for Office 365 groups
  • The Office 365 Microsites board is now organized by tags
  • A new knowledge portal on Office 365, named InfoPedia will be available soon
  • Office 365 video will have Yammer integration
  • Sway will be available later in May, to Office 365 first release customers
  • You can administer Office 365 groups using Powershell

OneDrive for Business

OneDrive for business has started becoming a favorite among enterprises these days, and at Ignite, Microsoft revealed their roadmap along with several other announcements of its upcoming features. Here is a quick rundown of what was disclosed:

  • You can now share OneDrive folders within your mobile app
  • Right-click context menu is now available
  • Features like version control, OWA attachments, and Yammer integration will soon be coming to OneDrive
  • Using reporting on Office 365, you can keep a check on which users are sharing what files on OneDrive

Microsoft also revealed its plans about OneDrive under the roadmap. Here is what you can expect:

  • OneDrive will come with new mobile PDF experience for Android and iOS in Q2, 2015
  • Next generation sync client will be introduced in Q3, 2015
  •  There will be a unified web UX in Q3, 2015
  • The 20,000 file limit will be removed from OneDrive in Q4, 2015

Advanced Threat Analytics

Microsoft tried addressing the security worries of enterprises with its new Advanced Threat Analytics or ATA, which is currently available under this preview. This technology is the result of Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Israeli security startup Aorato, and it helps improve security by going through four steps to ensure data protection:  analyze, learn, detect, and alert.

It will help you detect potentially harmful activity within your network by identifying suspicious devices and user activities. It will also enable you identify known malicious attacks such as Pass-the-Ticket, Reconnaissance, and known security issues such as weak protocols and broken trust certificates.

There were several other announcements made such as C# 6.0, ASP.NET 5.0, SQL Server 2016, Azure Stack, and the Operations Management Suite.

So, are you ready to test these upcoming features? The next Microsoft Ignite Conference will be held in Chicago between May 9 -13, 2016. But, you can expect more updates at Microsoft’s epic event Worldwide Partner Conference (WPC) that will be held in Orlando, Florida on July 12 – 16, 2015.

CloudAlly will be attending, come meet us at our booth! More details soon, stay tuned!

 If you are interested in meeting us at Microsoft WPC let us know:  sales@cloudally.com

BOX VS OneDrive

Box Vs OneDrive

Rendering the final verdict on which cloud storage provider is superior is no less than a Herculean task. Although the storage industry has witnessed just a few winters, the competition among the leading cloud storage providers appears to be quite intense. Over the last few years, users have seen commendable improvements and innovations in the storage industry, and who can forget about the famous price war?

Much has been said and discussed about the features and functionalities of two leading cloud storage programs, namely, Box Vs OneDrive. So we have come up with an unbiased comparison of these two leading products that can render an insight to users to cast their vote in favor of the one that best suits their requirements.

Box

Unveiling its cloud storage and sharing platform back in 2005, Box has become highly popular among businesses. Embellished with robust security provisions and lavish and business-oriented features, it is one of the top choices among businesses to store and share files and folders.

Backup BOX

OneDrive

With several constant improvisations such as the January 2015 update of iOS for business integration, OneDrive has become an attractive service for both individuals and business-purpose users. Box Vs OneDrive

Let’s look at how they stand against each other on the following parameters.

Security

With the ever-escalating cases of phishing scams, data security is one of the prime concerns of Internet users. Whether it’s personal or business data, it is vitally important to maintain privacy and security.

Box

Box has 256-bit AES encryption for all the files uploaded to it. With Box, you have the ability to decide who can access or view your specific files or folders, and simultaneously, it also allows you the freedom to edit and upload the files. If you like to safeguard your files even further, you can protect them by creating passwords. Box is HIPAA compliant and certified for EU and Swiss Safe Harbor frameworks for the use of personal data from European member countries.

OneDrive

The transferring data is SSL encrypted. It scans all the files for “objectionable content” that sometimes may lead to deletion of your account or data. OneDrive offers two-step verification that further protects the log-in via text message or One Time Code app.

Additionally, it features e-discovery and data preservation, audit reporting capabilities, and compliance with high-level industry standards such as HIPAA, FISMA, BAA, and EU model clauses. With OneDrive for business, you can set the custom permission level for users in your company and add it to existing lists available while OneDrive personal allows you only to edit or read.

 Usability

The user-friendliness of a product or service matters a lot, and the lack of it can repulse customers. So, which is more user-friendly – Box or OneDrive?

Box

In Box, anyone can create an account free of cost. The interface is pretty simple, and the “Make available” option is a great feature to store your data offline.

However, if you have multiple accounts, you cannot switch from one platform to another unless you log out and log in again. Also, the sharing and privacy features are built very much along business and IT lines and are a bit confusing.

Last year, it introduced a new mobile web interface that helps users take advantage of the same interface and navigation that Box mobile apps offer without the need to install the app on your mobile. It also added an HTML5 document-previewing feature that makes sharing your content effortless, even on the go.

OneDrive

The interface is quite simple, and the learning curve is almost zero. Something that may annoy customers is that once you sign in, you find yourself forced to use other Microsoft features such as Word, PowerPoint, Excel, OneNote Online, Office Online, and Outlook, among others. But when it comes to sharing, OneDrive renders an easy and enriched user experience. You can conveniently share the files and folders either via email or the links generated for that purpose.  Administering OneDrive for business is easy, especially if you are an Office 365 user, as it can be done from the admin portal itself. You can access it from anywhere, manage users and settings, control your storage, and most importantly, you can easily mix OneDrive for business with your on-premise solutions in the cloud. This clearly reflects Microsoft’s competitive positioning over other storage competitors, that is, serving the needs of companies that want to move to cloud storage for file storage and sharing but still would like to keep their on-premise infrastructure untouched.

Pricing

Although customers look for elegant and lavish features, price remains one of the chief concerns. Here, which service is more competitive in terms of pricing, Box or OneDrive?

Box

Box offers 10 GB of free space with a limit of 250 MB file size. The limited file size appears to be forcibly pushing the customer to the “Personal Pro” service at $10 per month, which  provides 100 GB space with file size going up to 5 GB. However, the file size of 5 GB appears to be quite meager compared to the other providers. Box for business comes at a price of $17 per user per month, which allows content collaboration and user management for up to three users with a file size limit of 5GB. However, for large-scale user deployments, it offers customized pricing that comes under the Enterprise storage plan.

OneDrive

You get 15 GB free space with OneDrive. Office 365 users get 1TB of storage space that comes at a price of $6.99/month. There is a referral policy in place as well, which can help you get an extra 5GB free space if you refer upto 10 friends. Earlier, it had a 2 GB file size limit for sharing, which has been increased to 10GB size file support limit. OneDrive for business comes at a price of $5 per user per month with 1TB of storage space. It includes Office Online, which comes with a free trial, so you can always test it out first to see if it fits your bill. Last year, Microsoft announced it would offer unlimited storage space for Office 365 users starting sometime in 2015, which will keep them well ahead of Box.

Box for office 365

Several months ago BOX has released the new BOX for Office. Box goal was to make it as simple as possible for everyone to open, edit, save and share any file from BOX. That release enabled to save attachments from incoming mail to a folder in BOX, to insert links to files already stored on BOX, and to automatically turn attachments into BOX shared links.  Two days ago, Box have announced it is joining the Microsoft Cloud Storage Partner Program. Box now will support native integrations with with Office for iPad, iPhone and online. This extends Box reach of existing integration with office. Box is taking an important step toward a more open future. This will be updated soon with also making office 365 on the web available later this year.

Box Vs OneDrive

CloudAlly’s next version release  will also support Backup for BOX. If you are interested in joining our beta please contact us

Learn more on why do you need to backup your online data and about the need to backup office 365

 

SharePoint On – Premises VS. SharePoint Online (2013)

If you’re having a hard time selecting between SharePoint On – Premises, and SharePoint online of Office 365, this next article is for you.  A reasonable comparison to make: SharePoint on premise vs cloud.


What this article is about:


This article provides a basic overview of the primary differences between SharePoint Online and SharePoint On Premises. So let’s begin by taking a look at the different environments needed to run Online vs On Premises.

SharePoint Environments – SharePoint on premise vs cloud

SharePoint on premise vs cloudAs with any on-premise vs cloud based discussion, one of the most significant differences is the impact on internal resources. On-premise solutions require an internal IT support structure including people, hardware and software, or the use of a Managed Service Provider (MSP). Conversely, cloud based solutions reduce the dependency on internal resources and typically provide better globally deployed fail-over and redundancy features.

On PremisesOnline
  • The SharePoint server farm is within the corporate network.
  • The IT Support team maintains the SharePoint farm and regularly applies Microsoft patches and updates.
  • On premise Active directory is used for authentication.
  • Full access to use and customize any SharePoint feature as needed.
  • Availability of Enterprise level services such as BCS, Performance Point, etc.
  • The SharePoint sites reside in the Microsoft Data Centre (MDC).
  • Microsoft applies patches regularly.
  • Microsoft’s SLA ensures 99.9% availability.
  • Microsoft’s global network of data centers provides reduced latency and high network bandwidth.
  • Support for Client Side Object & App model.

Feature comparisons: SharePoint on premise vs cloud

While the basic functionality of SharePoint remains the same, there are a number of significant feature differences between On Premises and Online:

CategoryOn PremisesOnline
Cost InvolvedPurchase/Maintain Hardware, Software licenses etc.Annual subscriptions for Office 365 Plans billed on a per user basis.
Infrastructure deployment & maintenanceIT Support Team to deploy/manage farm, latest updates or patches not always deployed.Microsoft manages the environment and ensures all updates and patches are deployed.
Business Continuity (BC)Dependent on internal capabilities.Microsoft built-in redundancy and fail-over for data centers, but does not provide end user backups or data recovery.
Product FeaturesSupport for enterprise feature, Office web App (OWA) needs to be installedMissing or limited features, pre-configured features
Customization OptionsFull support for server side code and client side code, App usage from OAC and SASFull Support- Client Side, Limited Support-Server side, Can use Apps from OAC or SAS
Information SecurityDependent on internal capabilities.Information in MDS meets industry-specific security standards
Compliance StandardDependent on internal capabilities.Verified by third party authors
Storage needsExpensive storage devices, Site Collection -More than 100GB, Scalable Storage SizeCheap storage cost, Site Collection- up to 100Gb, Maximum content in single tenant O365 plan based
DevelopmentFull trust solution can be deployed- Features in farm solutions can have scope as wide as the site collection, web application, or whole farm. Public facing website with much of customization is possible. Custom “Managed Path” allowed. More control can be delegated to power usersFull trust solution cannot be deployed- Only Sandbox solutions possible with scope up to the site collection level. Public facing website with much of customization is not possible. Custom “Managed Path” allowed. More control cannot be delegated to power users and maxim privilege level is Site Collection level.

Technical Comparisons

In addition to business features, there are differences in the technical features available to both options:

ServicesOnlineOn Premises
SearchLimited access to queryFull text Query
InfoPath Form ServicesOnly in E3, E4 and K1 plansRequired License to use InfoPath Form Services
Claim Bases AuthenticationN/ACan use SQL , LDAP and AD authentication
Managed AccountsN/AProvides a Managed Account to user at access the SP Admin Services
Usage reporting and LoggingN/AProvides LOGS and Reporting to check the exceptions and System Report.
Alternate Access MappingN/AProvides a map requests where the URL of a Web request received by Internet Information Services (IIS) differs from the URL that was typed by a user
SharePoint Health AnalyserN/ASite collection pre-upgrade health check examines a site collection and then generates a report listing any potential upgrade issues and how to address the issues

Pros and Cons

SharePoint On Premises

ProsCons
Control PerformanceCost of internal resources (staff, hardware, software, etc)
Scale Up and Scale OutAdditional Geographic redundancy costs
Reduces Bandwidth requirementsDisaster Recovery dependent on internal capabilities
Fully CustomizableScale Up/Out Cost (SW/HW)
Full Server and SQL DatabasePatching Servers/Farms
Migrate as NeededExtra configurations for External Collaboration
Seamless Single Sign on with Corporate Active Directory 

SharePoint Online

ProsCons
Uptime 99.99%More ISP Bandwidth
Multiple Data centersLimited Customizations
Geographically redundantPossible Storage Costs
Shorted release cycleRecovery SLAs
Managed Services (SaaS)No Server access
Pay as you go (Low Cost)
Reduced impact on internal IT resources
Scalability

No matter which solution you decide to use, SharePoint On Premises or SharePoint Online, you need to make sure you backup your data. No matter where your data is, you need a backup.

One thing is for sure: it’s much easier to backup cloud data using a third party solution, such as CloudAlly, which enables you to automatically backup your cloud data on a daily basis, and that is always accessible for you when you need it in case of data loss… Start to backup your SharePoint account with a Free 14 day trial.


Now that you know what the differences between SharePoint On Premises and SharePoint Online are…

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