Dropbox vs SugarSync: Online File Syncing and Backup

This is a guest post by Nick Reese. Nick is a fellow internet marketer and blogger. Follow Nick on Twitter.

Following Markus’ post on Top 5 Online Data Backup Services, he asked me to do a review of both SugarSync and Dropbox knowing that I have used both for over 9 months now.

Markus’ request couldn’t have come at a better time. Just a few weeks ago, my hard crashed wiping out all my entire desktop. Fortunately, I had installed both SugarSync and Dropbox so retrieving most of my data wasn’t an issue, I can’t imagine if I hadn’t.

Being Proactive to Protect your Files:

Lets remember during this review, data backup and multiple computer syncing is the goal. Both products work well, however they differ in their features and thus their uses. Both products allow the consumer to use a passive backup approach, as compared to manually backing up files on a external hard drive.

Passive Data Backup and Syncing:

Passive Data Backup is not something that should be overlooked, when you buy an external hard drive it is all to easy to say “I’ll remember to back things up.” Lets face it, its too easy to forget. By having software that uploads your files in the background you can go about your daily business worry free.

Comparison:

  • 2GB Free
  • 50 GB for $9.99/mo
  • 100 GB for 19.99/mo

Operating Systems:

  • PC
  • Mac (Beta)
  • iPhone
  • BlackBerry – Top 20 Most Downloaded Apps
  • Windows Mobile (Beta)
  • (access via m.sugarsync.com is also available)

Opperating Systems:

  • PC
  • Mac
  • Lunix

Resources:

  • ~90k of RAM*.

Resources:

  • ~60k of RAM*

Pros:

  • Online Photo Gallery
  • Stream MP3s Online
  • Folder Controls
  • Mobile Phone Access
  • Sync Any Folder on your computer
  • Easy Folder Management Across Computers
  • Send any file via email quickly
  • Upload Photos Directly to Facebook
  • File Versioning
  • Magic Briefcase

Pros:

  • Great for sharing 1 folder with 1 other individual. Rinse and Repeat.
  • Smart Uploader
  • Online Photo Gallery
  • Send any file via download link quickly.
  • Clean Interace
  • File Versioning

Cons:

  • Locks files during uploading, causing permission errors.
  • Sometimes the upload task can hog bandwidth

Cons:

  • All files must be in the same “Dropbox” folder.
  • Anyone who has access to a folder can edit it

Areas for improvement:

  • Gallery Feature Sometimes Grabs Photos for unrelated stuff. Say web icons.
  • Large file uploads take substantially longer than expected. (FTP is a lot faster)

Areas for improvement:

  • Large file uploads are super slow. However they are slightly quicker than SugarSyncs
  • Mobile Interface

*Both applications where run a Quad Core desktop with 6GB of RAM running Windows XP 64bit. The memory useage may differ from computer to computer.

Dropbox – Bottom Line:

Dropbox is best used as a digital flash drive that can be accessed from anywhere. Try Dropbox

SugarSync – Bottom Line:

SugarSync is more of a comprehensive backup and syncing solution (and a flash drive if you want to). Try SugarSync

Closing:

Over the 9 months I have used both products, SugarSync’s ability to backup any folder has been a real game changer. This feature allows you to backup and sync some very important things such as application data, which will allow your configurations of specific programs to carry over from one computer to another.

Furthermore SugarSync’s mobile support is another major plus. The ability to access your files on your phone is really useful for users who live a very mobile lifestyle.

Give SugarSync or Dropbox a try today! Whichever product you decided fits your needs best try the free trial, you will be glad you decided to start backing up your files.