One thing that we can’t seem to get enough of these days is storage. Taking photos, videos and collecting thousands of MP3’s does take its toll on our hard drives. And with such a massive collection of digital memories, the demand for more storage has never been bigger. However, these days, just chucking another hard drive in your computer won’t cut it, most users want to have an unified storage option that spands across all their devices.
Enter cloud storage – the elegant solution that allows users to upload all their digital media into one single place and access it from any device. But even cloud storage has its limitations. For one, you can only get so much free space, after which you need to pay for every extra GB. Also, for the more security conscious of you out there, there is the possibility of data theft and the constant thought that once you’ve pressed that “delete” button, your information is still hiding in a data-center in some distant corner of the world. Another approach to this problem can be a personal cloud device, and today, we’ll be taking a look at some of of the best different services that are out there.
What exactly is a Personal Cloud Server?
Well, basically this device is just a scaled down version of Dropbox, iCloud or any other cloud storage service on the web. It has the benefit of being in sight every minute, so you know exactly where your data is, as well as some added security. On the downside, having the device in your own home does expose it to other dangers, such as accidentally damaging it and losing your data.
In simplified terms, a personal cloud server is a glorified hard drive that you can access over the Internet on different devices. You could view these personal cloud servers as NAS (network attached storage) devices that can be accessed via the Internet from any mobile device. Also, they are cheaper than a NAS solution and easier to set up.
10 Best Personal Cloud Servers
If you’ve ended up searching for some good devices that will replace your current Internet-based cloud storage, then you probably know how they work and what they do, so without further ado, let’s take a look at some of these home cloud storage devices one might want to use.
First up, we have Western Digital’s MyCloud, which we’ve covered a while back. This sleek looking device is very flexible, offering users access from all manner of mobile devices. It also has a lot of storage, being available in 2TB, 3TB and 4TB, and users won’t have a hole in their pockets either after they purchase this gadget, which costs $150, $180 and $250 respectively.
The setup of the Western Digital MyCloud is fairly easy, and while it doesn’t have the very fastest transfer speeds, it still is one of the best out there. Western Digital have made a name for themselves in the storage business, and thanks to the wide compatibility and stylish design, many think that this is the best product out there.
If you are looking for a simple to set up personal cloud server, where you can safely store all your data, then the LaCie CloudBox is a very good choice. The small size of the device means allows for easy storing and thanks to the integrated software, you can have it up and running within minutes.
The LaCie CloudBox comes in 4 flavors: 1TB, 2TB, 3TB and 4 TB and costs $109.99, $149.99, $179.99 or $249.99, depending on the models, which puts it in the same ballpark as the Western Digital MyCloud. It also comes with 1-Year Limited Warranty, but performance-wise it has slightly lower transfer rates than other devices.
Another device that Western Digital offers is the My Book Live, which allows users to use this NAS device over the Internet via the dedicated app. The My Book Live has three variants, having 1TB, 2TB or 3TB of available data storage, and going for a price of $125.99 for the 1TB drive, $120 for the 2 TB version and $135 for the 3TB device.
The Western Digital My Book Live Duo on the other hand, is all about storing huge files on your network. This bigger brother of the standard My Book Live is twice the size, but also has twice the storage capacity. Pricing for the device starts from $299 for the 4TB version, and goes up to $399 for the 6TB device and 519 for the insanely big 8TB one.
If you plan on upgrading your home network with a NAS device that also acts as a personal cloud, then take a look at this gadget offered by D-Link. The creatively named ShareCenter 2-Bay Cloud Storage 2000 is an empty box that can house two 3.5″ SATA hard drives, and hook them up in RAID 0 or 1, or in JBOD mode for better performance and security.
Users who want this device have to keep in mind that it doesn’t come with either hard drive, and they will have to buy their own and manually install them. While this might seem not that appealing, compared to the other ready-out-of-the-box devices, it allows the user to customize the device, by adding the hard drives they want. The two-bay NAS comes at a price of $128, and for those who need some extra storage, there is also a 4-bay model which they can check out.
Another very well known manufacturer of storage devices has also created a dedicated home personal cloud server that allows the user to sync multiple devices to one location, and access any files they want over the Internet. Also, the device has dedicated apps for Samsung smart TV’s and Blu-Ray players, as well as offer support for Facebook backup.
Seagate has three models that its users can check out, each of them having different storage capacities: 2 TB, 3TB and 4TB. The device itself is pretty small and it has a nice, stylish look to it. In terms of price, you could pick one up for $135 (2TB), $157 (3TB) or$199 (4TB), which is pretty good value for your money.
Apart from the products listed above, there are other personal cloud servers that can be used for syncing all your files across different devices. If none of the above suit your needs, then do check out these ones:
- Akitio MyCloud Mini Personal Cloud Server Storage
- Buffalo LinkStation 410 2 TB High Performance NAS Personal Cloud Storage and Media Server
- Transporter 2.0 Private Cloud
- D-Link ShareCenter Cloud Storage