I do some word processing on a laptop at home, and then need to do work on some of the same documents on my computer at work. So far, this has led to a jumble of back-and-forth emails and disorganized files. What’s the solution?
http://www.rackspace.com/apps/backup_and_collaboration/online_file_storage/ Now, the data backup service — http://www.rackspace.com/apps/backup_and_collaboration/data_backup_software/ — is through Amazon S3, currently the go-to host for unlimited online storage. S3 exact pricing is found at http://aws.amazon.com/s3/#pricing but we can sum it up as $0.15/GB (gigabyte)/month storage, and $0.10/GB transfer each way. So… Say you have 50GB of data on to backup. It will cost 0.15×50 = $7.5/month storage, and 0.1×50 = $5 to get all your data backed up the first time. Now, let’s suppose you change 200MB (megabyte) of your data each day. That’s 0.2×0.1 = $0.02/day, or 0.02×30 = $0.6/month. And after 5 months, you’re paying another $0.15/month for storage. OK, that’s an easily affordable fee for most healthy businesses to afford. But what if you have more? Say, 400GB: 0.15×400 = $60/month storage, and 0.1×400 = $40/first transfer
0.1×1 = $0.10/day for backing up 1GB/day, which after an average month is an extra $3. 60×12 = $720/year, growing by $36/year, is going to be totally fine for some, but it’s enough to give many business owners pause. Nevertheless, it’s among the cheapest cloud storage out there, excepting services such as Carbonite. I’ve been recommending and installing Carbonite $5/month “unlimited” service, but I was disappointed to run recently into their 200GB ceiling, above which they throttle upload to 1GB/day. So maybe we use Rackspace for the bigger data stores. OK, enough numbers. I just needed to get those up here. Point being, Rackspace has some good stuff to look at, and I’m going to see how it goes with them. A couple of clients have already signed up. And, BTW, apropos of a previous post, I like Rackspace’s “What is…?” page, too:
The real reason why Steve Jobs hates Flash – Charlie’s Diary
While I fully understand the pros of a web-based “cloud” solution, I also consider the cons. These being: 1) if our internet connection goes down, so does our database, and 2) less data security as the database would be stored on someone else’s server. We could still copy data over to laptops for use away from the office – it just wouldn’t be updated/synced with the office database until return.
I really really really encourage you to examine the online CRM options, such as SugarCRM, and the ones listed in the Google Apps marketplace (which is where I look to find services who are keeping up with the Joneses).Online apps are, without question or doubt, The Future. I cannot state this strongly enough. The services being designed now make both life and business transactions so easy and flexible. Businesses who don’t buy into this future are wasting money and productive time — consider the cost, time, and often frustrating effort of designing a custom database from scratch, on an expensive platorm for which you have to buy a seat for each workstation. With the online apps, there’s nothing to install or update, and you can use it outside the office. User training is way faster. I started using an online invoicing solution called Freshbooks recently, which has changed my life; check out the list of online CRM add-ons that integrate with their service. I understand the reservations about internet going down and such, but that brings up the larger issue that, just by dint of email, if you have a single internet connection, and it craters, it’s likely to bring your business to a halt, or at least a stall, anyway. Which is why everyone should have at least one backup connection, preferably starting with an iPhone or Android phone. The second one could be something like a MiFi, although some of the Sprint phones let you turn them into a wifi hotspot for a few computers, which is awesome. You knew I was going to say the next thing, but the most amazing and satisfying alternative second internet connection is an iPad with 3G. I’m very excited about how iPad and Android tablets are going to change the landscape, and online, cloud-based, Software-as-Service solutions are big, snow-peaked mountains in that landscape.
• I’m replacing my 2006 MBP with a shiny new one which will arrive this week – a fully loaded 15”.
• What’s the best migration approach?
Your new Mac will ask if you have an old Mac, and instruct you through booting the old one to “Target Disk Mode,” and connecting the Macs via FireWire. Then you hit “Go,” and ALLLLL your stuff — user accounts and home folders, applications, support files, network configurations — will get brought over to the new machine, which will finish booting and reveal itself to be just like your old one.
• I use SuperDuper to back up to local disks at home and at the office.
• Shared drive for the family network – mainly as a music server – just hang a drive off the Airport extreme?
• My colleagues and I are ready to transition away from an in-house Microsoft environment – we have an Exchange server for 4 people – to Gmail, cloud storage, etc.
I am, as I say above, fully ready to help any business of any size move to Google Apps. It, and services closely related, are the best thing that has happened to the internet since the Web. And we are very able to do work in Austin, and lots can be done remotely.
• Upgrade the home network – right now running one Airport extreme which is not sufficient to cover the house – at some point I may need a wiring guy to enable broader wireless coverage.
Have you played with Zoho Projects?
I’m looking for another project-management solution. Basecamp just seems to confuse clients, consultants and staff. Definitely not a file-sharing solution. The only benefit I get is a task list with reminders. Whoopee. Their customer service is argumentative and unhelpful, and the workarounds too time-consuming.