Local and cloud technologies are combined to tempt users away from email sharing.
For IT managers contemplating
file sharing alternatives to their email system or content management platform,
Egnyte's Egnyte HybridCloud is worth consideration. A business-class file
sharing tool, Egnyte HybridCloud uses local and cloud storage to store, share
and back up files while also providing IT with centralized administrative
The latest version, which
became available on Nov. 30, includes unified FTP capabilities, file preview,
tighter Salesforce.com integration and subfolder synchronization, along with
other security improvements.
The offering is favorably
priced when compared with roughly similar business file sharing services. The
"Corporate Plan" provides for 30 power users and 600 standard users and costs
$228 per month when paid annually. This works out to $7.60 per power user per
month, just under half the cost of services from YouSendIt and Box.net.
Egnyte HybridCloud power users
are typically employees with full access to Egnyte HybridCloud services,
including Web browser and mapped drive letter access, along with access to
Egnyte's Personal Local Cloud software to synchronize local file changes with a
version stored on the Egnyte cloud file server. Standard users are typically
external to the organization, such as partners or clients. There is no charge
for Standard user accounts.
Sending Large Files
Where other file sharing
services tend to move users away from FTP, Egnyte is moving in the opposite
direction. New in this version is a fully integrated FTP service that is hosted
by Egnyte. I was able to use the no-cost FileZilla FTP client to securely
upload large files to my Egnyte HybridCloud account.
As a result, I was able to
track file uploads and see when files were shared and when access to shared
files would expire. This kind of access control should be appealing to IT
managers interested in retiring on-premises FTP servers while making FTP
available to those who use the protocol to move large files.
IT administrators should be
aware that power user systems will need to be modified to install client-side
software including a Java-based uploader. I needed to install the FileZilla FTP
client on my test systems as well.
As an Egnyte power user, I also
used the Personal Local Cloud software to synchronize files between my laptop
and Egnyte HybridCloud. The local cloud acts as a hard drive that continuously
synced files with my Egnyte account. Once I installed the local software
component and designated which folders and subfolders should be kept in sync,
the process proceeded with only a slight hitch. The behavior of the Egnyte
local cloud software tripped several Kaspersky tripwires-my test system is
protected with Kaspersky Pure client security software-that I had to approve
before the synchronization could continue. This happened only the first time I
installed and used the local cloud software.