I want to wish everyone a very Happy New Year. I hope 2013 brings everyone closer to their genealogical goals!
One of the most important goals on my list for 2013 is organization and data security. Paper files are not an issue for me. I never had many to begin with and I set up a system based on Mary Hill’s color coding. In turn I set up a similar file structure on my computer but it is taking much longer to implement. So in addition to getting that together I have been looking for places to backup my data.
(I want to say that I am not receiving any money or services from the providers in the following discussion.)
I have tried a few online services, I have a Google Drive, Dropbox and I have a SkyDrive but have never used it. I have only used the free versions of the online drives as I have never been able to decide which one to favor. Plus in order to backup the amount of data I would want would be huge financial commitment …. in excess of 100 GB.
Then yesterday I found Bitcasa. What caught my eye was their claim to infinite storage. In addition to watching their promo video on the website, I scoured the web looking for reviews and for the most part they were positive and reported the following:
- Bitcasa is currently in Public Beta release.
- Until they go live the service for infinite storage is currently free. After the official release the price for unlimited storage will be $10/month! (that is not a typo!!)
- I can connect multiple computers to my Bitcasa drive and share files.
- There is an Android app currently available, iOS app sometime this month.
I downloaded the program. Installed it on my desktop and laptop (both running Windows 7) and my Android phone. All connected with no problems. I even noticed that during the installation on my PCs that the program actually mapped a drive letter on my computer. Out of curiosity I looked to see how much storage I have on that drive and it says 7.99 EB. EB is an exabyte and one exabyte equals one million terabytes. I think I may be able to squeeze my data in there!!
After starting the program on my PCs, one of the options it gave was to mirror my computer. Seems a bit excessive but if you are going to have unlimited cloud storage … the option is there. I did not choose to do that.
I read over the Terms of Service and nothing really jumped out at me as being unusual. They make no claims to own or use your data other than in the process of maintaining it for you. Data transmission and storage are encrypted.
The only item that jumped out is that if you subscribe to the $10/month unlimited storage and fail to pay they will notify you of your amount due. If within 5 days you do not settle your overdue amount, Bitcasa could reduce your account to a free 10GB account and delete the necessary amount of data to accommodate that account level. Also for a free account that is inactive for 90 days, Bitcasa could delete your account with its data.
For free accounts that would be a big concern, especially if you are just looking for somewhere to park your data. However, if it is large storage capacity at an affordable price you are looking for, then Bitcasa might be the way to go.
I am curious if any others have been using Bitcasa and what their thoughts are on the service. One of my concerns is down the road, once Bitcasa is out of Beta, that increased use, bandwidth and storage demands might drive the price up. Any thoughts?