What are some cloud based options for a file server?


Have just joined a startup that has no infrastructure at all. At the moment we are only 3, expect to grow to 10 6 months from now, then possibly another 10 a few months thereafter.

I am the only technical person in the team, but I have other more important priorities. As such, I don't want to waste time maintaining infrastructure in the office.

Our first need is a file server. I don't want to keep one in the office due to installation and maintenance. My other 2 colleagues will be travelling a lot too.

Are there good cloud based options? We don't want to sync gigs of data across all 3 user's laptops - just want to be able to centrally store docs somewhere (thats secure too). If the solution works from Windows Explorer, thats even better as we don't want to install loads of add ons

Documents are not likely to be huge, I imagine we'd use about 250mb to start with - going up to 1Gb

Any advice?



asked Sep 25 '11 at 23:06
Avg Joe007
26 points

2 Answers


Options that come to mind

  • dropbox.com (easiest initally: con as you mentioned is the syncing / traffic between the cloud and the machines since copies are on your machines and server)
  • Virtual / Hosted VPN like infinitely virtual that you all VPN to and can then browse the remote data through explorer. All data is on their drives so when editing files it needs to go across the network
  • Desktop Virtualization
  • Network Attached Storage you could get a nice NAS that would have redundant hard drives, supports FTP for remote access and could appear 'mounted' in explorer or with a 3rd party app. Also some of these you can update the firmware and use Jungle Disk to backup to Amazon S3 or some cloud storage.
answered Sep 25 '11 at 23:19
Ryan Doom
5,472 points
  • Thanks for the suggestions, certainly a few options to think about there! Have you used any of the above? – Avg Joe007 12 years ago
  • I use dropbox everyday. So i can have access to some docs on my Macbook, PC, iPad & iPhone. I use the NAS strategy at our office ~10 people and I also have a NAS at home so it can be accessed by multiple computers and has redundant drives. I've not used the desktop virtualization or hosted vpn but am familiar with those types of services as some friends of mine sell cloud and virtualization services. – Ryan Doom 12 years ago


Initially, I'd start with Dropbox but as you grow, you'll want more control over file access, the ability to upload larger files and more. For that, I'd recommend Box.net as it's more geared towards businesses where Dropbox seems more personal.

answered Sep 26 '11 at 05:53
171 points

Your Answer

  • Bold
  • Italic
  • • Bullets
  • 1. Numbers
  • Quote
Not the answer you're looking for? Ask your own question or browse other questions in these topics: