As different kinds of data accumulate all around you, how and where do you store it? It is virtually impossible to carry documents around. A laptop solves the problem to some extent, but at the end of the day it’s a machine after all, and there’s no guarantee that it won’t die on you one day, leaving you high and dry as far as all that precious data is concerned. It’s also worth remembering that data these days is not restricted to just files and work-related stuff. There are photos, videos, music and much more that we load onto our computers and forget about until it’s too late.
You could take backups of data on a CD but what happens when you update a file? And on a practical note, how many CDs can you burn and how many of these will you actually refer to? More importantly, how many will you store, index and reference for saving time when you are looking for something? It does get a bit messy. And we haven’t even asked you about sharing your data yet!
However, rest assured. There are easy ways of backing up and storing data that can be easily accessed, shared and updated. Welcome to the world of online storage. Detailed below are a couple of the best services available, and there are more that we list in the table.
Mediamax is a free service that lets users upload up to 25GB of data. If you go through your computer, you will realise that of the 50-odd GB you have used up, nearly 75% is taken up by system files or programmes. Your data would be in the range of 15-18 GB. What we are trying to say is that you can back up your entire hard drive on Mediamax! How’s that?
Among other things, Mediamax offers the same hierarchical layout and filing logic as your hard drive does. Once you have backed up data, it does not change locations and you can find a file in the same place as it was on your hard drive. For photos and videos, there are two different areas where all images and videos you have stored are displayed and there is also a separate place for accessing your music. All this is done by the system and you don’t have to do any segregation or sorting on your own. Mediamax also offers a desktop tool with which you can just drag and drop files onto the web. It’s as simple as moving files from one folder to another and hitting “Upload”. That’s it!
Xdrive is a service that has been around for a while, but has started to offer a free storage facility only recently. It’s not as gracious as Mediamax and doesn’t offer you 25GB space, rather just 5GB. But even that is more than what some of the others offer.
Xdrive is a robust tool and offers most of the services that Mediamax does, but what it also allows you to do is store and synchronize your bookmarks with your computer. One may argue that del.icio.us is a better service for this, but in the case of Xdrive, it’s just a question of backing up.
Both services are easy to sign up for and are simple to use for all the basic functions. If you just combine the facilities of these services with some smart planning and regular backing up, you will never find yourself lost for data again!