How to make sure your Cloud data does not disappear overnight

If you you’ve been following the IT news recently you probably saw the issue that users recently had with GMail. If not you can read more about it here. Imagine one morning firing up your Android phone or laptop and finding your data was gone!

Of course, this does not just affect email systems. It can affect any cloud service you store data with. Carbonite was another high profile example of data loss, and of course there are many others, and no doubt there will be many more.

So what can you do to prevent such loss? Well, you can backup! Exactly like you do with your laptop. At SMEStorage all users, including free users, can backup their emails to their storage cloud of choice, as long as their email provider supports IMAP, the user can start or schedule a backup and just leave it to complete. An effective solution to a horrible problem should it ever arise.

What about you Cloud data? Well, our Personal Cloud Lifetime and business users can choose to ‘pair’ a backup cloud with a primary cloud. This will instantly schedule a sync of all existing data to a backup cloud, and it will also backup any future data uploaded, giving you total piece of mind that your Cloud data is highly available as a backup copy is stored on another cloud. this could be Amazon S3 and RackSpace for example, or MobileMe to Azure Storage, whatever combination you would like to choose!

If you primary cloud goes down or your data is not available we’ll get it from your backup cloud.

The Cloud does not have to be a dangerous place, just take sensible precautions to protect your data.

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Android SME Cloud File Manager updated to 1.7

We have updated our Android SMEStorage Cloud File Manager on the Google Android Marketplace to version 1.7. This new release has the following changes:
– Enabled Notes to be emailed as attachments
– Accessing notes changed to a double tap
– Added support for HTTPS on login (https is slower)
– Added support to upload any file from phone to storage cloud chosen
– Added support for icloud, safesync & Sharepoint clouds. SharePoint can only be used by SMEStorage business accounts.

The next release will feature HTTP / FTP support for local file upload over Wi Fi and also sync from ‘cloud to phone’ / ‘phone to cloud’ scheduling, a much requested feature.

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SME adds support for Windows Azure Blob Storage

It may be 2011 but there is no rest for the wicked, as they say ! We’ve been hard at work over the holiday period adding support for Windows Azure Blob Storage. This is now implemented and you can sign up for free from the site.

As well as working with the SMEStorage web interface, you can also access Windows Azure Blob Storage from our free Windows Dashboard client, Windows Tools (which also include virtual drive and desktop sync) Mac Virtual Drive, Linux tools, and of course our mobile clients which encompass iPad, iPhone, Android, and BlackBerry.

Key features are:

– Map Network drives from any desktop OS to Azure Blob Storage

– Use the SMEStorage Lifetime Cloud package to connect to as many Windows Azure Blob Accounts you require.

– Create, browse or delete files and folders directly from the web or the desktop

– Manage your containers and blobs from the web or the windows desktop tools

– Create / Delete Rename blob containers

– Complete access from Mobile devices (iPad, iPhone, Android, BlackBerry)

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SME adds Cloud Storage Import/Export Exchange

We’ve added a new feature on our website for users of our Lifetime Cloud or Organisation Cloud packages which is something we are calling ‘The Cloud Import/Export Exchange’. It provides the ability to move data from one Storage Cloud to another.

This can be useful for users who, rather than wanting an aggregated view of all their data, simply want to move data from one Cloud to another as a one-time operation, for example from Amazon S3 to Google Storage, or from RackSpace to Amazon S3, etc.

If you are a Lifetime cloud or Organisation Cloud user, to access the Cloud Import/Export Exchange, simply click on “Cloud Import/Export” from the sidebar after login.

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How to manage your Google Docs, SkyDrive, RackSpace files + more on the Mac using ForkLift 2 with SME

BinaryNights recently updated their Mac OSX File Manager, ForkLift to version 2. This is a nice replacement for Finder on the Mac and supports FTP, WebDav, Amazon S3, as well as being able to manage the Mac files directly using a two pane window.  We’ve got used to using Forklift with our CloudDav offering (which adds a WebDav layer over any cloud we support) and this enables us to manage files on a variety of Clouds, including, Google Docs, RackSpace, SkyDrive, and of course all the other Clouds we support. It is priced reasonably at $29.95 and it has a 14 day trial download.

As a quick guide for use, see the below:

Now choose WebDav and fill in the details for CloudDav:

We can now see our various clouds within the SMEStorage. virtual cloud file system

Ensure you also choose ForkLift->preferences and to queue file operations:

You could receive an error such as the below during copying:

If this occurs then click “Apply to All” and choose to skip. Forklift can instantiate a number of parallel connections and the requests can be refused by our servers which is why the error message occurs. You should check after copy that all your files were uploaded. If not, simply selecte the file missing and drag it across the pane to where you want it to reside.

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SME now supports the Google Storage Cloud

We’ve now added the Google Storage Cloud  to our Cloud Gateway so that users can use our clients and tools to manage their Google Storage files. These of course include our Windows Cloud Dashboard, Windows tooling, which includes a virtual Cloud Drive, Mac and Linux tooling, and also clients for the iPad, iPhone, BlackBerry and Android.

You can also use CloudDav, our ubiquitous WebDav layer over any cloud, to access your Google Storage files, or you can use our S3 compatible endpoint to use tools that support S3 compatible endpoints to manage your Google Storage files.

Currently Google Storage is in ‘preview mode’ from Google, which means they have not rolled it out completely yet and if you don’t have an account you can register interest. In the preview mode the capacity is up to 100 gigabytes per object and 1,000 buckets per account. Data replicated in multiple data centers across the U.S. and also within the same data center.

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Further news on iSMEStorage 2.0 for iPhone and iPad

We’ve just released the new version of iSMEStorage to the App Store. We put so much effort into it that is has become a major release version rather than the 1.67 version we had previously intended.

The release includes the following features:

Enhanced Security: The App can now be assigned a PIN over and above the normal login (for security of local files)

Better local file sharing: Added ability to email local files as file attachments

Sync from any Cloud: It is now possible to sync any cloud directory (from any of the clouds we support) to your phone. You can do this with as many directories as you wish and can set the sync directory from within the App.

The first App to offer cut and paste between clouds: We’ve added cut and paste of files between cloud directories and even between different storage clouds used the concept of File and Folder Actions! You can also now use the Cloud Clipboard to store multiple files that you wish to cut and paste in this manner.

Fully fledged FTP Server: You can now turn iSMEStorage into an FTP Server and batch upload as many files locally as you wish.

Fully Fledged Local File Manager: We’ve beefed up the local file operations so you can now cut and paste files between directories locally and also added the ability to create and use folders as categories for the Memos and Voice Memos sections of the App.

Enhanced Text Editor: We’ve beefed up the text editor so it is now full screen and has a word search as many of you requested. We also added the ability to edit any local text file as you wanted and enabled .html .css .xml and any other type of text format file to be edited.

Google Maps integration: The GEO location of where a file was uploaded and where a file is stored is now integrated with a Google Maps view.

Enhanced Cloud Support: Added support for DropBox, Zimbra Briefcase and Files Anywhere (Web Advanced Plan required)

Email to Cloud Support: Added FileBox menu option so that you can easily get to file attachments that you have mailed to your Cloud

Mark Folders as Favourites: Added support for marking folders as favourites from directly within the App.

Web Viewer fixed: Amended Web Viewer so that state is kept when browsing in menu.

Organisation Ready: Added icon for Organisation Folders and Organisation Support for our business users



Apple normally approves within a week so we are hoping that the App will be released around the 20/21st October unless we have to do any amendments as required by Apple.

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Coming Soon: Access your Cloud Files from any cloud using S3 API

We’ve been surprised by the huge success of the work we did with CloudDav which enables you to access your Cloud Files from any of the storage clouds we support using WebDav, even if the underlying Storage Cloud itself does not support it.

With that in mind we’ve been working on something even more innovative and that is enabling you to access any of your Cloud Files using the Amazon S3 API. This will mean that you will be able to use existing Amazon S3 tools, scripts etc that support the ability to specify your own endpoint to directly access Cloud Storage on Cloud such as Google Docs, DropBox, RackSpace, SkyDrive etc. We think this will prove just as useful to many developers, individuals and companies as our CloudDav layer has been.

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Sync Files to Google Docs, Amazon S3 and other Clouds through the web browser with the SME Firefox Plugin

For a little while now we have had the SMEStorage Firefox Plug-In available as an option to use from the FireUploader tool as provided by Rahul Jonna. This is a great Plug-In to use to be able to bulk upload to any of the clouds we support, including of course Google Docs, Amazon S3, MobileMe, RackSpace Cloud Files, Microsoft Live Mesh / SkyDrive + more.

It has a lot more functionality than that providing the ability to share files by email, get a tinyurl link, use group collaboration and other functions SMEStorage overlays over the clouds.

Imagine if you could use a web browser plug-in like this to sync a local directory up to clouds like Google Docs or Amazon S3. Well now you can ! After registering for a SMEStorage account with the cloud of your choice you can use the plug-in to select a directory and Sync it to a folder called My Syncs on Google Docs, Amazon S3 et al.  If you change files, either on the cloud, or on the local file system then  then next time you sync, only the changed files will be uploaded or downloaded.

The Firefox tool is one of our oldest plug-ins and is built on the rich multi-cloud SMEStorage API. It is just one of the many data access points that SMEStorage provides into Cloud Storage. It’s been a while since it had an update, and you can download it from our Cloud Tools page.

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SME Blackberry Mobile version is now in pre-Alpha

The Blackberry mobile version has just entered pre-Alpha status. Most of the API functionality is complete and now it is just a case of building the UI. It should be ready for a mid May release.

This will mean that soon Blackberry owners will be able to view/manage/access their files directly from their device for any of the following clouds:

Amazon S3, Google Docs, RackSpace Cloud Files, Microsoft SkyDrive, Microsoft Live Mesh, Box.net, MobileMe, FTP, Gmail, and WebDav clouds.

You can view a short video of this here.

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Using SME with your Mac. Upload your Cloud Files direct from the Finder

For many of use in the office using Mac’s we’ve yearned for some tighter integration with SMEStorage and the Mac. You can choose to use the Windows explorer via Crossover or WINE with the Mac and it works nicely, and you can also use the Firefox plug-in which also works really well, but having OS level integration is always nice.

Snow Leopard has enhanced the integration of the automator services into the OS which makes it much easier to provide contextual functionality.

Using this method there is now available an add-in for users of SMEStorage to be able to upload their files directly from the Mac to their chosen cloud of choice (and we now support over 10 storage clouds), and after the file has been uploaded a unique link for the file will be copied to the clipboard.

You can view a video below that show this working with Google Docs:

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