As I’ve mentioned before, I use several cloud storage services. However, being a cheap bastard, I have only signed up for free accounts up to now. That means I have lots of little bits of storage scattered here and there (although recently Box gave me 50GB free and my Copy account has risen to 25GB). But that means having to keep track of where I put certain things. It sure would be nice to have a program that would aggregate all these little pieces into a single thing.
Aggregation into something like the storage pools of the ZFS file system would be ideal. Having the ability to configure redundancy and RAID-like capabilities would be icing. Additional requirements would include cross platform operation and strong encryption on the client side.
Of course, using multiple cloud services would introduce more possible sources of failure. What should the system do if one of the services goes down? What should the system do if one of the services decides to shut down? More complications.
Such a program would have to understand the API of each service. That would be another great project — developing a library that abstracts away the differences between services — basically a ZFS-like file system for the cloud.
Why have I not written such a thing myself? As I have whined about before, I spent the last 30 – 40 years writing desktop and embedded systems. Not too much work on web-based applications. Although I’m learning, I would rather have such an application before I have the skill to write it. Any takers?
I use the Cloud very simply, nothing elaborate. I use BitBucket to keep track of my repositories. I use DropBox to store copies of scientific publications and Fargo outlines. For important stuff, I use SpiderOak because of its great security model. I think I have an iCloud account somewhere. That’s it.
This morning, I’ve been playing with a new service called Copy. It is very much like DropBox but starts you out with much more storage, 15GB instead of 2GB. And you can get bonus space by referring other users. For example, if you click the link above and sign up, we will both get an extra 5GB. If you get a few of your friends to sign up, that can add up to a lot of extra space.
If you share items with other people, Copy splits the charges equally amongst all the folks being shared with. For example, if there is 30GB of data being shared by three people, each is charged for only 10GB. Nice.
If you want more storage than you can get for free, you can sign up for a couple of levels of paid service. The rates aren’t bad.
There is an API for deploying apps against. Still reading, but it looks reasonable.
Not really sure yet about the security aspects and other details (is storage versioned? storing only diffs? what happens to deleted data?) But things don’t look too different than DropBox.
The only problem that I’ve had with the service is that the Windows version of the application will not recognize my user name and password. The web and iPad app have no problems. Haven’t tried the Linux client yet.
Overall, this seems like a very nice addition to the cloud storage space.