If you’re not sold on using a cloud storage service, develop your own.
"Personal cloud storage combines the best of both worlds by storing files on a local networked drive and allowing you to retain full control over your data, while still making files available anywhere you can get online," Brian Nadel at Computerworld writes.
Nadel reviewed three personal cloud systems: LaCie Cloud Box, Western Digital’s My Book Live and D-Link’s Share Center 2-Bay Cloud Storage 2000. All are small enough to fit on a bookshelf or on your desk. Remote access apps for iOS, Android, BlackBerry and Windows Phones are available.
LaCie’s CloudBox is the easiest of the three devices, from opening the box to having your data available wherever the day takes you, says Nadel. It’s sleek, the smallest of the three and costs $120.
All the software is on the drive— just plug it into the router or a network node, and open Windows Explorer (PCs) or the Finder (Macs) to start the Dashboard software. You can access files from local or remote computers using the company’s myNAS website.
My Book Live
My Book Live offers the most remote access apps of the three devices, Nadel reports. At $140, My Book Live works with PCs and Macs and includes SmartWare for backing up a PC, but not a Mac. The Western Digital Dashboard software links with the drive and lets you create a password, set up email alerts and control when the drive goes into power-saving sleep mode.
The WD 2go app lets you tap into files stored on Dropbox and SkyDrive.
Unlike the other two devices, the ShareCenter is a full Network Attached Storage (NAS) system that doesn’t come with its own hard drive. Instead, it has two empty drive bays that accommodate 3.5-inch SATA drives. Priced at $200, the ShareCenter is the largest.
Setting up the ShareCenter is a little more involved. You access your files from either local or remote computers by using the company’s mydlink.com website. Click to download or upload a file.
Sharing files or folders is little involved. It’s a bit awkward and takes a couple of minutes to complete but works well. If you’re using an iOS or Android device, you can use D-Link’s mydlink Access-NAS app.
— Adapted from “Here, there, everywhere: 3 personal cloud storage systems,” Brian Nadel, Computerworld.