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Comparison of organizations providing Storage Space on the Web

There are many companies providing free online storage. These Storage-as-a-Service providers have very similar feature set. These companies provide an easy to use online interface to upload or download files from a user’s desktop to the servers on the cloud. Typical usage of these sites is to take a backup of files and data. Other usages are hosting images, videos or large files and making them available from web sites.

All these sites follow a freemium business model. They provide a basic online account that typically has limited disk storage and/or a limit on individual file size. A less restrictive storage scheme is available for paying members. This is a very competitive space with no clear leader. There are as many as 11 sites that provide free online storage, among the top 500 most popular sites. This is as per alexa traffic statistics as on Dec 2009.

Table below gives comparison of free offering of Storage-as-a-Service providers

Free Storage as a Service
Vendor File Size Storage Size Waiting time Advertising
RapidShare 200 MB Unlimited Yes Yes
MediaFire 200 MB Unlimited nil Yes
MegaUpload 2 GB 200 GB 25 sec Yes
Hotfile 400 MB Unlimited 30 sec No
4Shared 500 MB 10 GB Yes Yes
DepositFiles 2 GB Unlimited 60 sec Yes
YourFileHost 25 MB ? Yes Yes
Zshare 1 GB ? 20 sec Yes
easy-share 200 MB Unlimited Yes Yes
Imgur 10 MB Unlimited No Yes
Uploading 1 GB Unlimited Yes Yes

There are other constraints of the free version. Some of the important ones are explained below.

Constraint of free storage as a service providers
Vendor name Limitations
Rapidshare Files not accessed within three months are deleted
MediaFire No URL is provided to access the files directly from a website
Hotfiles 30 minutes waiting time between two downloads. Files not accessed within 90 days are deleted
4Shared In the free version, files not accessed for 30 days are deleted
Uploading Deletes files that are not downloaded after six months in the free version
Imgur Files more than 1MB are compressed. Files not accessed within three months are deleted
Easy-share Premium account allows users to download statistics, rename or organize your files into folders or set your file properties
Yourfilehost Deletes files that are not downloaded in fourteen days
Depositfiles Deletes files that are not downloaded in thirty days

Table below gives comparison of basic premium version offering of Storage-as-a-Service providers. Imgur and yourfilehost only have a free version.

Premium version of Storage providers
Vendor File Size Storage Size Waiting time Price
RapidShare 2 GB Unlimited nil 6.99 Euro
MediaFire 2 GB Unlimited nil $6.97
MegaUpload Unlimited Unlimited nil $9.99
Hotfile 400 MB Unlimited nil $9
4shared 5 GB 100 GB nil $9.95
depositfiles 2 GB Unlimited nil $10.95
Zshare 2 GB ? nil No
Easy-share 1 GB Unlimited Yes $11.95
Uploading 2 GB Unlimited nil $9.95

An important criteria in selecting a provider for storage space on web is the download speed. However it is difficult for thecloudtutorial to do this comparison, as the download speed is dependent on many factors. Users will need to select couple of vendors based upon information provided above, and then choose one based upon performance.

Storage Space Tweets