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Alternative to Nextcloud – Why FileCloud is better for Business File Sharing?

FileCloud competes with Nextcloud in the Enterprise File Sync and Share market. The comparison below between the two products is along the areas of the following:

  • Pricing
  • Hosting Options & Features
  • Mobile Features
  • Cloud Features
  • Customization
  • Security, Access Control & Existing File Systems Integration
  • Extensibility
  • Audit & Admin Tools
  • Deployment & Administration

The feature comparisons are as follows:

 FileCloudNextcloud Enterprise
Pricing
Business Model$/user license$/user license
Pricing for 100 users/year4199$9500 (€8900)
Hosting Options & Features
On Premise/Self-HostedYesYes
Multi-TenancyYesNo
Storage, Sync & Backup Features
Storage SyncYesYes
Large File Support, max file sizeYesYes
Supported Local StorageYesYes
Storage LimitationUnlimitedUnlimited
Endpoint Backup (Multiple folders)YesNo
ServerLink (Cross-Site Replication)YesNo
Mobile Features
Mobile OS CompatibilityiOS, Android, Windows PhoneiOS, Android
iOS, Android Media backupYesYes
Activity Streams, CommentsYesNo
Offline SyncYesNo
Desktop Clients
Desktop Sync – Cross Platform (Windows, Mac, Linux)YesYes
Desktop Drive – Cross Platform (Windows, Mac)NoNo
Microsoft Office Add-onNoNo
Cloud Features
File SharingYesYes
Secure AccessYesYes
Granular Sub Folder PermissionsYesNo
Team FoldersYesNo
Free Limited UsersYesNo
Document Web Edit (Collabora)YesYes
Document Web Edit (Office Online Server)YesNo
Customization
Customization, BrandingExtensive & White Label OptionLimited to Themes
Security, Access Control & Existing File Systems Integration
Integrate – Existing Home DirectoriesYesYes
NTFS SupportYesYes
Network Share SupportYesYes
Network Share VersioningYesNo
Active Directory SupportYesYes
Multiple Active DirectoryYesNo
Single Sign-OnYesYes
Built-in Ransomware ProtectionYesNo
SAML AuthenticationYesYes
Data At Rest EncryptionYesYes
Two Factor Authentication(2FA)YesYes
File LockingYesNo
Extensibility
API SupportYesYes
Zapier IntegrationYesNo
Chrome Browser ExtensionsYesNo
Sharepoint pluginNoYes
E-signatureUnder DevelopmentNo
Amazon S3/OpenStack SupportYesYes
Audit & Admin Tools
Access and Monitoring ControlYesNo
Mobile Device Management (Block devices, remote wipe, notification to devices)YesNo
Audit ReportsYesYes
Geo IP Access ReportsYesNo
File Analytics & Reporting (Summary of Client Applications per OS & Type, User Shares, Active Files Managed, File Type Distribution)YesNo
Role Based AdministrationYesYes

Click here for detailed comparison

Now let us look in detail, the area of differences between FileCloud & Nextcloud.

Feature Integration: Nextcloud depends on their app integration to provide a complete set of features. Due to the nature of integration, the access to simple features are not intuitive. On the other hand, FileCloud’s feature integration was seamless and mimicked a typical SaaS application. Moreover, the built-in tightly integrated features will help enterprises manage users and servers very easily.

Installation & Setup: Nextcloud’s setup was pretty straight forward. However, the application was bare out of the box. And, Nextcloud’s half-baked platform/app model didn’t help. FileCloud’s installation & setup was as easy as Nextcloud and will satisfy any enterprise that is in the market for an EFSS solution. The feature packed FileCloud solution was easy to get it up and running full-fledged.

Multi-Tenant: For Managed Service Providers and larger organizations, having a multi-tenant capable solution is a must. FileCloud provides multi-tenancy and Nextcloud does not.

Feature benefits of FileCloud over Nextcloud

Mobile Device Management: FileCloud offers MDM as part of the private cloud file sharing solution. The tighter integration of MDM to FileCloud makes it easy for enterprises to have a one complete solution. Some of the key FileCloud’s MDM features are as follows:

Unified Device Management Console – FileCloud’s unified device management console provides simplified access to managing mobile devices enabled to access enterprise data, irrespective of whether the device is enterprise owned, employee owned, mobile platform or device type. Manage and control of thousands of iOS and Android, devices in FileCloud’s secure, browser-based dashboard. FileCloud’s administrator console is intuitive and requires no training or dedicated staff. FileCloud’s MDM works on any vendor’s network — even if the managed devices are on the road, at a café, or used at home.

Remote Block/Wipe – Administrator can selectively block a specific client device from logging into the FileCloud server. In addition to blocking a client device from logging in, administrator can also wipe FileCloud folders in the remote device.

Device Commands and Messaging – Ability to send on-demand messages to any device connecting to FileCloud, provides administrators a powerful tool to interact with the enterprise workforce. Any information on security threats or access violations can be easily conveyed to the mobile users.

Endpoint Backup: FileCloud provides ability to backup user data from any computer running Windows, Mac or Linux to FileCloud. Users can schedule a backup and FileCloud automatically backs up the selected folders on the scheduled time.

Administrator Dashboard: FileCloud’s administrator dashboard provides a single page view of server health, user statistics, license information, disk usage, Geo-IP reporting and new user/file additions.

Customization & Branding: Nextcloud doesn’t provide white-label option and customization & branding is limited to themes. However, FileCloud provides the option to white-label FileCloud & Managed Service Providers can provide their own branded EFSS & Backup solution. Moreover, the customization is extensive and FileCloud Administrators can customize components such as TOS, Email Templates & custom CSS

File & Folder Locking: For seamless collaboration, the ability for users to lock files and folders are a must. FileCloud provides the ability to lock files & folders, in some cases automatically locks the file on edit. NextCloud doesn’t provide locking support.

Here’s a comprehensive comparison that shows why FileCloud stands out as the best EFSS solution.

Try FileCloud For Free & Receive 5% Discount

Is Enterprise File Sharing and Sync (EFSS) the Death of Enterprise Content Management (ECM)

ECM Fossil

The management of information within the enterprise is changing, as businesses become more mobile, engaged and open. In a nutshell, EFSS refers to a service that enables users to store their files in the cloud or on premise storage and access them remotely via web browser or mobile devices. ECM on the other hand can be defined as systematic processes that enable businesses to store, search and deliver crucial content efficiently and effectively.

Today’s enterprise IT has to balance between an end user’s desires to have an ‘easy to use’ solution that works on all their devices with a broader strategy that enables them to effectively build and disseminate information. Does flexibility win over control, or does compliance requirements trump ease of use?

Along Came EFSS
When consumer cloud storage services emerged, users were immediately drawn to their simplicity, the intuitive user experience they provide, their remote accessibility and the ease of collaboration and sharing they provide. Workers all over the globe were quick converts mainly because they had grown tired of the bulky, difficult-to-use proprietary enterprise content management systems.

Consumerization enabled employees to define how, when and where they wish to interact with corporate content. Shortly after, companies began to see the value of moving their various apps to the cloud. It is this disruption that has prompted some vendors and analysts to wonder weather EFSS tools can replace traditional enterprise content management solutions.

The Demise of Conventional ECM

Its no secret that file sharing and sync services have emerged to challenge conventional ECM software. However, whether or not the rise of file sharing services in the enterprise spells doom for enterprise content management applications is still a subject of debate. While EFSS is largely focused on collaboration, user experience and speed, ECM is focused on control, security, and compliance. Content management platforms were build for a vast range of purposes, facilitating the control and capture of content throughout its life-cycle. They therefore tend to offer more robust features, including tighter security, work-flow controls and security.

Despite their robustness, today’s workforce has demonstrated time and time again that they want easy-to-use applications that provide them with remote, 24/7 access, regardless of their location. While some enterprise content management application vendors may maintain that file-sharing and sync applications are lacking in certain avant-garde functionality like permissions and security, work-flows and audit trail; EFSS has come along way.

Two Markets Converge

ECM vendors have begun noting the success of file sharing and synchronization. This has prompted them to start adding EFSS-type functionality to their content management platforms. But it may be a case of too little to late, EFSS tools have already gained wide acceptance in the enterprise. Some of the EFSS tools currently in the market have enough functionality to be classified as ECM apps; making them the ideal choice for both on-premise traditionalists as well as those who simply wish to leverage mobility and cloud to transform their business.

With added compliance capabilities and security, enterprise file sharing and synchronization not only provide access to data stored in their dedicated remote repositories, they also facilitate secure access to data stored in on-premises network drives. With EFSS, you would essentially be getting an ECM platform with more collaboration features at a fraction of the cost. File sharing and sync tools may not be a direct replacement for ECM entirely, but they will certainly eat into some of the use cases. In the long run, file sharing solutions with directly compete with established ECM solutions.

Click here to see the robust features FileCloud offers and click here to see how it stacks up against other file-sharing tools currently in the market.

Author: Gabriel Lando

Image Courtesy: twobee, freedigitalphotos.net

FileCloud Launches Industry’s First Enterprise File Share and Sync Solution with Built-In Ransomware Protection

Powerful protection features to protect files against ransomware are added to the IT industry’s most innovative file sharing and sync platform

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AUSTIN, TEXAS – September 28, 2016 – CodeLathe, the leading provider of Enterprise File Sharing and Sync platform, announced today the immediate availability of FileCloud 13. This new version offers powerful features to protect enterprise files from ever growing ransomware threats.

According to Datto, a data protection company from Connecticut, ransomware attacks now cost small and medium companies at least $75 billion in expenses and lost productivity each year. Federal Bureau of Investigation cautions – “The number of ransomware incidents—and the ensuing damage they cause—will grow even more in 2016 if individuals and organizations don’t prepare for these attacks in advance.”

“Ransomware is the No.1 cyber security threat faced by enterprises today,” said Madhan Kanagavel, CEO of CodeLathe. “Ransomware protection should be a key requirement for an enterprise file sharing product. Undoubtedly, FileCloud offers the most powerful ransomware protection features among EFSS products. More than ever your files need it”.

What is Ransomware? Why do EFSS solutions need built-in protection?

Ransomware is a type of malware that encrypts digital files and removes originals forcing the enterprise to pay ransom to unlock the data. The victims of ransomware range from schools, hospitals, police departments, SMEs to large enterprises.

Enterprise File Sharing and Sync (EFSS) solutions can exacerbate the ransomware problem. Since EFSS solutions provide endpoint agents that access, synchronize, backup data from and to central repository, the risk of infection increases a lot without adequate protection. Sync and backup applications will end up synchronizing encrypted file rendering backed up data unusable.

Public cloud EFSS providers such as Dropbox, Office 365, and Google Drive are a favorite target for ransomware and they provide an attack vector into end user computers by delivering malware payload via spoofed email messages. Recent security breaches in Dropbox (68 million accounts), Adobe (38 million accounts), LinkedIn (117 million accounts) and Yahoo (500 million) further exacerbates the ransomware threat.

How does FileCloud Protect Enterprise Data from Ransomware?

File Content Heuristic Engine – To protect data from ransomware attacks, FileCloud 13 has incorporated a file content heuristic engine to find, and protect files from attacks. Heuristic engines can detect unwanted types file based on its content signature. If the detected file type does not match its mime type, then a variety of actions can be setup to keep the ransomware from spreading. You can read more about FileCloud content heuristic engine and how it protects your files from ransomware our site.

Granular permissions to prevent writes to sensitive data – FileCloud 13 supports ACLs to allow custom permission for the file resources. Using granular permissions, organizations can build permission tree to protect sensitive data. Therefore, even if a folder is exposed via Drive or Sync clients, the client cannot modify the folder data preventing any infection risk.

Recovery from ransomware – Backing up and versioning of files can be effective mechanism to recover from a ransomware attack. In the event of a ransomware attack in a client computer, if the data had been versioned in FileCloud server, then the client computer data can be restored using older versions from the server. FileCloud offers unlimited versioning, endpoint backup and rollback scripts to help companies develop effective anti-ransomware strategies.

Customization is an effective deterrent – Email spoofing is one of the primary delivery method to send malware to end user computers. With Dropbox and other public SaaS products, hackers can easily spoof the email and users aren’t usually aware of what is behind a link because every email and link look the same. Filecloud offers an array of custom branding options for UI, business domain, and email templates to login page image.

FileCloud 13 availability

FileCloud 13 is available for immediate download from our customer portal. For complete list of new features please check our FileCloud 13 launch blog post.

Currently, FileCloud is used by Fortune 500 companies; Global 2000 firms; world’s leading law firms; city, state and federal institutions; world-class universities; and renowned science and research organizations. FileCloud is deployed in over 90 countries. FileCloud also has more than 100 VARs and Managed Service Providers across the world.

For more information or download FileCloud 13, please visit www.getfilecloud.com

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Replace FTP with a modern solution that users will love – FileCloud

admin ftp replacement

Quick intro to FTP- How FTP started

While working on publishing version 4 standards of the Transmission Control Protocol and Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) in the late 1970s and early 1980s, developers were able to run a series of experimental development work which later on led to the creation of modern TCP/IP.

Through this ground breaking innovation, the developers were able to further their work and divide methods of network use into two categories. The first category was the direct network use which allowed users to access remote hosts and use them as though they were local. One such application was Telnet.

The second method of network use was indirect use which allowed users to get resources from a remote host and use them on a local system then transfer them back to the remote host. One such application was FTP.

How Developers Have Tried To Improve FTP

Initially created to simply transfer or share files within a network, FTP developers found it necessary to improve their innovation. This is why the initial FTP standard, RFC 114 was improved from just a definition of basic commands and how devices could communicate using the protocol. A series of upgrades through to RFC 172,265 and 354, ultimately led to a more secure FTP that required users to use usernames and passwords before they could share or retrieve files.

Is FTP good enough?

As much as developers tried to secure the file sharing solution by adding a secure extension, FTPS, FTP users still come across a number of security and efficiency issues.

  • File transferring inefficient and unreliable

FTP usually has a 2 GB limit to the file size you can send or share, making it inefficient for businesses that usually deal with large file sizes. Worse still, in the event you send any file and it fails to deliver, FTP does not notify you of the failure unless you manually check for it. Additionally, you cannot run simultaneous transfers to multiple recipients, making this a time-inefficient file sharing solution.

  • Numerous data breach avenues

FTP users are faced with security issues ranging from brute force attacks, spoof attacks to network sniffing. To put in perceptive the gravity of these vulnerabilities, a report by Sucuri shows that as much as brute force attacks have been existent for more than 15 years, they hit an all-time high in September 2015 when they discovered 35 million attacks per day, a significant increase from 5 million per day in January 2015. Worse still, the cost of data breach is estimated to be $3.79 million USD, according to IBM and Ponemon Institute in their report, “2015 Cost of Data Breach Study: Global Analysis

  • Compliance with industry regulations is uncertain

In the wake of Snowden revelations on the spying activities of the United States government and the formulation of new server operation regulations, you sure want your company to comply with set industry regulations. Sadly, while your company would want to be compliant with different set of regulations, FTP vendors don’t offer consistent compliance with different regulations.

How FileCloud can replace FTP

FileCloud, an on-premises Enterprise File Sharing and Sync (EFSS) solution has proven to work better than FTP in a number of areas and ways as discussed below:

  • Gives your business complete control

From the start, FileCloud was ideal for businesses that valued security and data ownership. Data ownership is enhanced by the fact that the software empowers corporate IT departments and MSPs to create their own, secure file sharing and sync platform.

  • Tracking capabilities

FTP offers no traceability at all while FileCloud developers have ensured that any file activity or action, however small, can be traced. For example, in FileCloud 8.0, users can use the activity stream feature to review any action taken on files and folders saved on FileCloud. You can monitor actions such as document uploads, downloads, updates and sharing within your team, for example.

  • File editing efficiency

File editing has never been easier before. FileCloud, through the file comments feature, helps enhance team communication and collaboration.  For example, any comments added to a file sent for review will be displayed, showing who commented, what they said and when they did it. Additionally, the quick document feature allows you to quickly incorporate the comments and edit the document accordingly then save the new version, without downloading or uploading anything on the FileCloud server.

  • Better security

FileCloud offers better security than FTP, no wonder it is trusted by 2000 global enterprises across industries, in 90 countries.

The security features include:

  1. Anti-virus scanning- All documents must be scanned before uploading or importing data
  2. Files are encrypted both at rest and on transit
  3. Two-factor authentication
  4. Single sign-on

If you are looking for a secure FTP replacement, click here to learn more about FileCloud – a modern alternative to FTP. Try FileCloud today and begin enjoying features that FTP does not offer you.

FileCloud Announces a Google Chrome Extension for Gmail

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AUSTIN, Texas, August 9, 2016 — CodeLathe, the provider of FileCloud, the IT industry’s most innovative Enterprise File Sharing and Sync platform, announced today the immediate availability of a FileCloud extension for users of Google Chrome and Gmail. This new and amazingly easy-to-use extension enables users to share large files and save email attachments directly to FileCloud without leaving the Gmail window.

By using the FileCloud for Gmail extension, FileCloud users can now easily share and save files just by clicking the FileCloud icon on the Gmail window.

“This announcement is yet another example of delivering the most innovative enterprise file sync and share software anywhere in the industry,” said Madhan Kanagavel, CEO of CodeLathe. “Nearly everyone is logged into a web browser throughout the day. The ability to share and save files directly from Gmail on Chrome will ensure that organizations will remain collaborative and highly efficient.”

FileCloud is the leading, self-hosted file sharing, sync and mobile access for businesses. FileCloud is deployed on in-house servers or on cloud infrastructure providers like AWS, Azure or Google Cloud. FileCloud client apps are available for the leading desktop and mobile operating systems such as Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, Windows Phone 8, and now Chrome.

According to Litmus Email Analytics, Gmail holds the second largest market share (16%) in email clients and Chrome Browser is the undeniable market leader in browser market with 50.95% market share. Among the many reasons for Chrome’s popularity is that it has one of the largest libraries of extensions and add-ons that enhance the browser’s ability to do what you want it to do.
The FileCloud for Gmail extension is particularly useful for organizations who use Gmail for their organizational email. The extension is simple, but gets the job done in a few less clicks.

Here’s an outline of how simple it is to use FileCloud for Chrome:

1. Install the extension in your browser. Once the extension is installed, you’ll see a new FileCloud icon at the bottom of the message compose window. Click it to sign in and select files from your FileCloud. The extension then adds links to your email message and they’ll get shared with the recipient. One can also choose files instead of sending links.

2. You can also save Gmail attachments directly to FileCloud by clicking the FileCloud icon. The email attachments are automatically uploaded to your FileCloud target directory that you specified.

3. You can quickly find files by using FileCloud search tool and add them as an attachment to your email message.
FileCloud for Gmail extension can be downloaded at no charge by visiting Chrome Web Store.

FileCloud is currently used by more than a thousand businesses across 65 countries including world’s leading universities, research organizations, government entities, and enterprises. For more information or to download FileCloud, please visit www.getfilecloud.com.

File Content Search using FileCloud – Technical Architecture

FileCloud is a leading enterprise file access, sync and share solution that provides flexibility to run on-premise or on any IaaS such as AWS, Azure. FileCloud not only has the ability to integrate with cloud storage but also make legacy storage available through its access framework.  Additionally, using FileCloud, users can search for files/folders by name, type, date and size across any storage connected to the system. Furthermore, in v12 release (Q2 2016), FileCloud has increased its search capability by introducing the ability to search files based on its content.

Under the hood, FileCloud uses Apache Solr for searching file contents. This blog explains the interaction between FileCloud and Solr to make content search possible.

Apache Solr

Solr is a highly reliable, scalable and fault tolerant, providing distributed indexing, replication and load-balanced querying, automated failover and recovery, centralized configuration and more. Solr powers the search and navigation features of many of the world’s largest internet sites.

Solr is a java application that is packaged with all the components to run it as a standalone service or in a cluster. Please look here for installation instructions.

FileCloud Integration with Apache Solr

FileCloud can be configured to use Solr as a service to be used for content search. Please look here for configuration instructions. Once FileCloud is configured with Solr, all the uploaded documents (content searchable such as DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSX, PPT, PPX, PDF, TXT) are indexed by Solr.

Content search consists of two major functionalities:

  • Indexing of documents and storage of the indexed information.
  • Querying the index to retrieve files that match the query criteria.

Indexing

The following is the workflow that happens during indexing of incoming documents:

  1. User uploads a file from any of the client access points such as web browser, FileCloud sync, FileCloud drive, mobile apps, WebDAV client etc.,
  2. FileCloud server checks if the incoming document is a parsable document such as word documents, spread sheets, presentations, plain text files and PDF files.
  3. If the document in not parsable, it is processed and stored in FileCloud. A copy of metadata of the document file is send to Apache Solr, which in turn gets stored in the metadata index. The metadata sent to Solr includes file attributes such as name, path, size, creation date etc. Storing this information in Solr enables FileCloud to retrieve files based on these attributes in addition to content.
  4. If the document is parsable in addition to processing and storing in FileCloud, a copy of the document is uploaded to Apache server. Metadata of this document is also sent to Solr.
  5. When a parsable document is uploaded to Solr, it parses the document, extracts the text contents and stores the information in the content Index.

FileCloud Content Search - Indexing

Querying

The following is the workflow that happens during querying of files:

  1. Client such as web UI sends search parameters to FileCloud server. The parameters can be some text string to be searched inside the files and/or name, path, size etc.
  2. FileCloud server parses the incoming parameters and converts them to a query format the Solr can understand.
  3. Solr query is then submitted to Solr.
  4. Solr executes the query on the metadata and content index. The results are collected and sent back to FileCloud server.
  5. FileCloud server converts the search results into a XML format understandable to FileCloud clients and sends the result back to the client.

FileCloud Content Search - Querying

Alternative to FTP: Insights On FileCloud

try filecloud

File Transfer Protocol, which is also commonly referred to as FTP, is a standard network protocol used to transfer computer files between a server and client on a computer network. In actual sense, FTP has the ability to separate control and data connections between the client and the server due to its client-server model architecture.

As much as FTP has been popular in the recent years, the file sharing solution has been marred with extensive reports of insecurity and inability to efficiently send large files as well as its failure to alert users in the event that file sending fails.

Luckily, FileCloud is a great alternative to FTP, giving the modern corporate user the required flexibility and safety to share files across networks as detailed below.

What is FileCloud?

FileCloud is an Enterprise File Access, Sync and Share solution that runs on-premise, integrated with your own IT infrastructure and using your own storage. File cloud runs on-premise residing on your company’s intranet or your hosted data center and is protected behind a firewall.  This on-premises Enterprise File Sharing and Sync (EFSS) solution allows your employees safely access, sync and share files by allowing your administrators to control and manage it, using your infrastructure.
If you are looking for a secure FTP replacement, click here to learn more about FileCloud – a modern alternative to FTP.

What Makes FileCloud So Different?

FileCloud is unique in different ways, one of which being its ability to allow organizations to create their own private cloud as mentioned in the introduction. By simply installing the application, FileCloud provides your business a safe way to access internal data. In addition to the ability to create your own cloud, FileCloud has other key features.

  • It Guarantees Privacy And Security

While public cloud services have compounding data security and privacy issues such as the inability to know where your data is stored and whether or not it has a backup, FileCloud guarantees you data privacy and security in a number of ways.

First of all, by allowing you to build your own private cloud on your own servers, FileCloud gives you complete control on where your data is stored, backup creation and authorized access to the data.

Secondly, you don’t have to worry about 3rd party access to your data especially after the Snowden revelations on the United States government spying activities. In light of this, FileCloud developers have made sure that it is among the 26% of cloud services that meet the EU data residency rule, to guarantee safety of your activities online.

Lastly, since the application can be managed and controlled by your own internal IT team, you have the ability to decide on laws you will be compliant with, such as Sarbanes Oxley, PCI and HIPAA.

  • You Can Control The Overall Cost Of Cloud Services

The ability to manage and control your privatized cloud environment offered by FileCloud enables you to minimize your hardware and infrastructure costs by using only what you need while still maintaining a fully functional cloud environment .

  • FileCloud Is A Cross-Platform Solution

FileCloud is compatible with various operating systems across the board, such as Windows, Linux and Mac. Better yet, the service can be accessed on mobile phones through its mobile application, which has average rating of 4+ stars across all platforms including android, windows, iOS and blackberry. In a world where 80% of internet users own a Smartphone and 78% of these users prefer mobile apps which guarantee minimal data use, FileCloud is sure the best file sharing option for most people.

How else do mobile users benefit?

  • FileCloud Offers Full Mobile Access

With the developers designing with mobile users in mind, FileCloud goes an extra mile by offering full mobile support across major mobile device platforms such as Android, iPad, iPhone and Windows.

Mobile users benefit in three major ways:

  1. They enjoy full FileCloud features on the supported devices
  2. Access remote files
  3. FileCloud offers full mobile syncing and sharing capabilities
  4. Integrates with other mobile apps to open documents
  • Enterprise-Grade File Syncing And Sharing

FileCloud allows you to sync and map your files from any location, as though they were in your local drive. This ability to remotely access your files saves you the struggles of always carrying your laptop on business trips. All you need to do is log in using a supported device and continue with your work, using different avenues such as WebDAV, desktop sync, virtual drive and mobile app among others, to access these documents.

The intuitive User Interface (UI) helps users to share documents across devices. This can happen real-time, enabling you to edit your documents on the go, eliminating the need for you to keep track of emails sent back and forth with clients when editing a document. All you need to do is update the document and all the hassle is done.

  • FileCloud Gives Actionable Auditing And Reporting

One major disadvantage of FTP is that it offers no traceability. There is no way to see who accessed what information, whereby such a loophole has given cyber criminals the leeway to hack into FTP servers, retrieve information and leave without a trace.

FileCloud on the other hand, provides the ability to fully monitor file access and usage for all your hosted files, ultimately giving you full audits and reports.

Usually, the audit report contains three vital sets of information:

  1. User access tracking, which will tell exactly who accessed what data and when they did it.
  2. User action tracking whereby you will be shown what a particular user did with the information they accessed and other activities within the access period
  3. Access mode tracking which will show you how the user accessed the data. (At this point you can tell whether this was authorized or authorized access and make relevant changes)

From both policy and security perspectives, this is a useful addition to the software. You can monitor the safety of your network by seeing the mode of access and activities while at the same time, detect any possible policy violations.

Final Thoughts

Did you know that FileCloud is cost-effective for your business? Actually, it has been proven that 80% of cloud adopters saw improvements within 6 months of moving to the cloud and 82% of companies have reportedly saved money by moving to the cloud. Additionally, FileCloud offers much lower cost of ownership than any of its competitors. Hence get FileCloud today and experience value for your money while you grow your business.

Author: Davis Porter

Top 5 reasons why backup in Windows Server 2016 is complex

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With the new Windows Server 2016, your backup needs may be significantly different and complex than simply finding a right compatible backup agent. Here are the reasons why-

  1. Introduction of Nano Servers

With Windows Server 2008 Microsoft is bringing back the Nano Server trend. This is a bare-bone structure which is just enough to deploy the 2016 version of Windows Server. This is not a new option, but use of Nano Servers for deployment has a much smaller impact than server core deployment. Imagine a server without any form of user interface – Microsoft is all set to introduce its Windows Server 2016 without any UI and this includes PowerShell.

  1. User limitations

Owing to its small size and very small deployment, the Nano Servers have extremely limited applications. Although Microsoft recommends the use of Nano Servers for host Hyper-V, running could applications and scaling out file servers only.

Creating backup of Windows Server 2016 will not be impossible, but it will definitely require extensive planning. In most cases the Nano Servers are expected to run as VMs. In such cases a virtualization aware backup app compatible with Windows Server 2016 should be enough to backup all necessary data on a regular basis.

In case of guest level backups, suitable backup agents with increased compatibility will be required to be incorporated into the deployment image of the Nano Servers of 2016.

P.S – always remember that Nano Servers can be installed from deployment images only.

  1. The introduction of Windows containers

Containers weren’t available for Windows currently besides the fact that they will be Docker containers which have been made compatible to work with all new versions of Windows. Since this is a fairly new technology, it is expected that most backup vendors will not have a good solution that handles all kinds of container backup and related problems. This will be an initial stage problem which will be resolved with time. However the ones who make the initial switch to Windows Server 16 will face issues during server backup.

Organizations which have been using Docker for a while prefer Linux servers. These organizations usually use scheduled codes to back up their Docker containers in the form of .tar files. These can be backed up without any hassle like other file formats after they have been created.

  1. Windows service architecture

Microsoft has been trying for quite a while now to offer Windows as a Service. This is about to come true with Windows Server 2016. If we look back we can see that Microsoft actually has quite a long and uninterrupted history of offering regular updates for Windows desktop and Windows Server to complement each other. This basically means the unique property of Microsoft to offer regular updates, features and editions to all the Windows users over a period of time. If the Windows Servers include such services then the backup operators need to be equipped with extensive new features that will perform regular testing of new builds. This is primarily necessary for auto-updating OS which add and change elements intermittently.

  1. Use of new conceptual storage models

Storage Space Direct is one of the most recommended scalable storage systems for local servers. This is a fairly new concept and has been optimized to function with Windows Server 2016. Hence it requires a little bit of time and understanding to be able to use it to its highest potential. This will bring forth the use of a new generation of disk devices including SATA SSD and NVMe disk device. Most organizations do not have the infrastructure or familiarity  to support the use of Storage Space Direct.

The other concerns regarding the application of new storage models inlcude: The use of the new SSD technology enables the organizations and service providers to use simple industry standard servers with local storage systems to eliminate all kinds of complexity. It also removes the requirement of any kind of a shared SAS fabric which is a further unknown zone for most organizations which use shared local servers.

Conclusion

The new backup agents require much more than just the ability to restore lost data. These new agents should be able to manage snapshots, DR elements, VM protection and Cloud Support in the event of server failure or system failure. However the use of Nano Servers and Docker containers may pose serious challenges for the backup process. In addition to these a number of other features need to be factored in, these include the server load, the size of the organization and the specific business requirements of the server in use. Hence, when it comes to server backup agents, one size never fits all. Those, who are switching up to 2016 version of Windows Server, may have to wait sometime before finding the right backup agent.

Author: Rahul Sharma

How to find what application is listening on a TCP/IP port in windows using netstat?

Whenever an application wants to make itself accessible over the network, it claims a TCP/IP port, which means that port can’t be used by anything else. So if you need to use an in-use port, how do you tell what application is holding it?

There’s a number of ways to tell which application has the port locked, here we will use a windows built-in way using the command line and Task Manager.

Using Built-In Tools to See What is Listening on a Port

The first step is to use a command-line tool to see what ports are in use, and use a special flag that tells us which port is assigned to each Windows process identifier number. Then we can use that number to look up exactly which process it is.

Open up a command prompt and type in the following—you may have to open in Administrator mode to see all processes:

p1

netstat -ab | more

This will immediately show you a list, although it’s maybe a little complicated. You’ll see the process name in the list, and you can search for it.

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You can also use this other method, which takes an extra step, but makes it easier to locate the actual process:


netstat -aon | more

If you look on the right-hand side, you’ll see where I’ve highlighted the list of PIDs, or Process Identifiers. Find the one that’s bound to the port that you’re trying to troubleshoot—for this example, you’ll see that 0.0.0.0:80, or port 80, is in use by PID 1184.

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Now you can simply open up Task Manager—you might have to use the option to Show Processes for All Users, and then you’ll be able to find the PID in the list. Once you’re there, you can use the End Process, Open File Location, or Go to Service(s) options to control the process or stop it.

p5

Alternatively you can even use resource monitor to stop any process that is running. To open resource monitor type resmon.exe in run. This will bring up the resource monitor window.

p6

p3

There would be situations were some other process is running at port 80. To stop anything running in port 80 the following command can be used from command prompt.

net stop http /y

‘Growth Mindset’ + ‘Anti-Fragile’ = A dream team

growth mindset antifragile
Recently I read two great books Antifragile by Nassim Taleb and Mindset by Carol Dweck. Antifragile is a new concept that opposes the general belief that opposite of fragile is ‘robust’.  Author proposes that a true opposite of fragile is something that gains strength with stress vs. robust that resists stress at the best. For example, organic systems such as muscle is a great example of anti-fragile systems those get stronger as you stress them repeatedly.

‘Mindset’ is a mental framework that can be applied to any pursuit in life. The author argues that mindset is what makes individuals and team to achieve greatness and not the natural abilities.  People with growth mindset embrace challenge and accept any failures that come with them, while people with fixed mindset focus on proving oneself. In simple terms, individuals with fixed mindset want to appear strong (a hero with natural talent),  and seek for approval hence they don’t take challenges where they might face failures that might make them look weak. On the other hand, growth mindset encourages individuals to openly accept deficiency, and see failure as an opportunity to improve hence they pursue challenges for self-satisfaction and push the boundaries beyond what they know they are good at.

We all dream of building a company (or a team) that would not succumb to stress but it learns and grows with stress.  In other words, we inherently want to build an Antifragile company. Such an organization constantly takes risks, is open to failures and learns from failures, thus pushing boundaries – key characteristics of growth mind set. Adding two together,  if we want to build such an anti-fragile organization then, clearly, we want to build a company with a growth mindset.  Here is my simple summary that involves four pivots to foster growth mindset in a team.  (BTW, the book is lot more than my simple framing)

BELIEF: ‘Becoming’ over ‘Being’

We should believe that ability and talent is not something that we are born with, our ability is developed overtime through effort.  As a team, we have to try, fail and learn new things, i.e knowledge and skills is a constant state a work in progress vs. a static state. One of key metrics should be a) did we push the boundary? and b) what did we learn?

APPROACH: ‘Learning’ Over ‘Flawless’

If we agree to accept the fact that we are ‘work in progress’, then we shouldn’t strive to look like a hero. By accepting that failure is part of any challenge,  we would be more open and transparent to expose our weaknesses and accept others’. The book gives an example: In Hong Kong, among the students  who moved from local system to a 100% English medium schools, the students, who accepted that they needed help with English, did way better than similar students who didn’t openly accept they needed help.

ACT: ‘Fighting’ Over ‘Satisfying’

A lot of times, teams undertake activities to satisfy their bosses, instead of fighting the market reality. Companies lose touch with reality and eventually would fail as employees repeat process, activities and release products to satisfy others within the company not the market. Let us focus on fighting the market forces not pursue set of activities that reinforce our self-worth among bosses and team.

MEASURE: ‘Effort’ Over ‘Ability’

To encourage learning, we need to praise the effort not the ability. The book shows many examples and experiments that demonstrate how praising someone’s ability reduces their willingness to seek challenges and grow. Praising ability pushes people to strive to appear to be a hero with extraordinarily abilities who can win effortlessly.  On the other hand, encouraging effort leads better risk taking an growing. The hardest part is to implement formal and informal mechanisms that would foster such culture within a team.

 

image:smarnad, freedigitalphotos.net