DropBox - Pros and Cons
Dropbox is an online storage service where users can upload their documents to a cloud environment. Since the documents are stored centrally on their servers, users can basically access the files wherever they are, which means you can upload the documents at your home computer, and then download them from your school or office computers later on.
There are multiple ways where users can access their online storage space. The simplest way is to access the dropbox website directly and upload documents through their web interfaces. Other than that, you can choose to install a piece of software locally on your computer, which allow you to create a dropbox directory locally. This local dropbox directory will be automatically synchronized with your online dropbox storage. The dropbox softwares have multiple versions to support different operating systems including window, mac, linux and mobile environment.
Other than for your own use, you can also make use of the DropBox storage space to share documents with your friends. For example by uploading the documents to your dropbox space, you can choose to share them with your friends via a public url provided by DropBox. This is convenient since what you need to do is to upload the documents and send your friends the link. After that, you can shut down your computer and grab a coffee. The idea is that you and your friends need not to be online at the same time for the transfers to take place.
However sometimes it's not the most efficient way to share files with your friends. If you could notice, the whole process of sharing involve two separate steps - uploading and downloading, which basically double the time of transfering files from one computer to another if you compare it with a direct transfer. Therefore, if you and your friends are online and available at the same time, you can simply send the file to them directly. Most of the instant messenging applications nowadays, like MSN, gTalk, Skype, provided this functionalitiy.
They offer 2GB free space for every registered users. If you want to go further, you will have to purchase their priced package starting from 9.99 per month. They also offer a teams package at $795 for a collaboration among team members.
2GB should be enough for ordinary usages. However, if you want to share large files like musics or videos, or a large amount of medium sized files like photos, 2GB might probably be not enough. In this case, you might have to consider another options since their priced packages can't really help too much.
What they offer is a convenient way for sharing files, however the downside is that DropBox company will keep a copy of all your documents. We can never be sure DropBox is going to remove the files completely even if you requested to do so. So if you need to share sensitive data, you might have to consider this issue.
If what you need is an online storage space to hold your insensitive documenets, which you are going to access them in different locations with different computers, DropBox is your best choice. However, if you want a more direct and efficient way to sharing files with your friends, you might have to consider some other options.
Finally, if your documents are sensitive and privacy is your top concerns, you probably need to look for alternative solutions. Our service - efshare - is mainly built to cater all the problems possessed by DropBox. Do check out our service description page if you are interested to know more.