Cloud storage has become a staple of the computer user in the last few years with the dawns of BOX.net (now Box.com), Google Drive, Dropbox, and many others. If you were lucky to get in on any of these beta programs, you probably have up to 50GB on any one of them with a free account, but upgrading can be pricey as well as limited.
Cut to March 2013 and Bitcasa officially leaves beta, I wish I had gotten in on this beta, and for a mere $10 per month you can have unlimited cloud storage.
Bitcasa is a fantastic step forward in the cloud storage market. However, most of us using it are getting very frustrated. Hands-down, when it comes to storage, Bitcasa’s Infinte Drive is a dream come true for large media libraries and sharing among one’s devices and computers. However, there are still many drawbacks.
Limited support for Mac, although supposedly the the first system it was designed for, leaves many unsatisfied. Most of us who are sticking with Bitcasa instead of asking for our $10/month or $69-$99/year back, troll the blog and support sites daily hoping for fixes regarding Up/Down speed, system crashes, incomplete transfers, and error messages. But since March there hasn’t been anything definitive. A couple days ago there was an update to the most recent client (build 1061) but since it was unusable for most of us I don’t think anyone has tried it. We’ve all downgraded to build 1057, which is in my opinion least problematic.
Taking a note from Dropbox, Bitcasa offers version control so you can recover accidentally deleted files or revert to previous versions – a MUST for document storage as well as backups. But unlike Dropbox, the web interface is lacking in functionality, no folder creation, right-clicking does nothing, and version control is dependent on downloading and re-uploading.
Windows users are also having problems, but it seems nowhere near the amount that Mac users are having. My dinosaur of a PC running XP seems OK when playing media playlists with VLC despite slow playback initialization. Also, uploading from my Mac while playing media files with my PC gets my PC kicked, but its an easy fix to re-start a movie. Anyone running Windows have any other comments?
Linux users still don’t have a real client, and if you use the Mac and/or Windows client, Bitcasa warns you not to use the current Linux client due to compatibility issues. However uploading from my Linux machine running Ubuntu 10.04 LTS seems by far the best while using the web portal on Google Chrome, which also has a Bitcasa extension. I haven’t used the extension yet, but it is on my list of features-to-try.
Altogether, it can be said that the cost is still out-weighed by client issues and snail-like transfer speeds. It has taken me almost a month to upload 66GB. I still have almost 1.3TB to upload before I am done movie to this cloud, and I am not looking forward to spending the time shackled to my computer(s) to ensure everything gets uploaded, but if I can successfully get my entire media library in the cloud, it will be well worth the effort.