Find out more about File Sharing Software
What is File Sharing Software?
File sharing software can be utilized by companies and individuals to send and receive multiple files using a local network or through the web. This system supports multiple file formats including text documents, videos, and images. It is commonly used to download and share media files with other people. Employees can use business networks to distribute and share project documents. File sharing software normally use the following types for storage, transmission, and distribution: distributed peer-to-peer networking, localized servers on computer networks, online-stationed hyperlinked documents, and manual sharing of movable media. We have reviewed the leading app in this category for your benefit and you can also take a look at the current leader ShareFile.
Most Popular File Sharing Software
Best File Sharing Software
How To Choose The Best File Sharing Software
Almost every business—from the small startups to even large companies—uses online file sharing software programs as a method to boost productivity inside and outside the office. Compatibility and security issues however can put businesses using some platforms at a disadvantage. On the market at present, there are dozens of file sharing programs available, although the quality as well as the features offered can significantly differ from tool to tool.
The specific file sharing software program that a company or freelancer decides to buy and use should be mainly dependent on its features, support options, price, and supported devices. Security is traditionally a major issue among businesses, since many companies are using these tools to send and store confidential information and sensitive data. For those companies, especially, it is therefore crucial to research the type of security features a software program has built-in before buying one. Let us introduce the list of features of best file sharing software and give you a few tips before you make a final decision:
Get to know each product with free trial
Discovering the features of a program prior to the final purchase is always a good idea. Most reputable vendors offer 30-days robust trials that can display both the basic and advanced functionalities and reveal whether the program can respond to your needs or not. Due the fact that these demos and basic versions are usually free, you can even choose few of them and compare which one is better. The best thing to do is to try services that currently have the highest results in our SmartScore and Customer Satisfaction Rating in the File Sharing software category, such as ShareFile, MultCloud, Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, Apple iCloud, SugarSync, DropSend, etc.
Syncing and sharing files can simplify the IT and data landscape of literally every business and individual who is looking to collaborate with a group or to protect his data with cloud storage. Most of these programs are integrated with email services and offer a reporting function, which is why people choose them even without the need to share extensive files on regular basis. Small companies and teams, for instance, still share large data files across their business environment, and need to protect that data and make it accessible for every user at every point of time. As the business grows, communication enriched with sharing capacity becomes even more important, which is why medium and large enterprises choose solid file sharing platforms to support their work. Last, but not least, our digital world requires individuals to share information this way, both professionally and personally.
File Sharing Software For Enterprises
Large businesses are in need of robust platforms that provide a variety of file sharing channels, unified support for different formats, and comply with security and scale considerations. For them, these systems represent a secure area for internal and external communication, ideally one where information can be accessed from a variety of systems and devices. What file sharing apps do for enterprises is to deliver an all-in-one collaboration kit for sharing large and sensitive files quickly and securely. The organizational silos are slowly broken, as everybody in the company communicates in real time, and projects are managed efficiently, cost-effectively, and on time. It is not difficult to conclude that large and decentralized teams are the ones to benefit the most from this type of software.
What are Examples of File Sharing Software?
- Dropbox: One of the most popular file sharing and storage solutions that syncs files automatically, both on mobile and conventional devices. Its basic option with limited sharing is free, but the transition to a paid plan with advanced functionality is fairly affordable.
- Google Drive: Another favorite program among users that stores files and monitors changes, and it also has a free basic version with 15 GB storage.
- Box: One of the greatest alternatives to Dropbox and Google Drive for small business and large companies which empowers secure sharing and comes with granular permissions and activity logs.
- Apple iCloud: The interesting thing here is that Apple iCloud is available both for Mac and WindowPC devices, and can thereof be synced with any of your databases for effortless sharing.
- SugarSync: This program can respond to the needs of individuals and small businesses looking to share files in common formats and to operate in an intuitive and user-friendly interface.
For info on other leading apps in this category, read our detailed article on the top 10 file sharing software.
Types of File Sharing Software
Even if they serve the same purpose and have approximately the same functionalities, file sharing platforms can be different in many aspects. These are the basic types of file sharing software to be found on the market:
- System-native file sharing software. These software programs directly work from the computer’s operating system. This type of software program is mainly used for sharing files or documents with other users within a local network.
- Client-server file sharing software. This type of file sharing software program usually involves webpage, FTP sharing, and email. The program usually stores your data in a central location such as a server and then sends it to clients or users who request the data.
- Peer-to-peer (P2P) file sharing software. This kind of software program transfers your files between two computers directly. Instead of one central server, this software program utilizes the computers in your network as node servers. Big files are typically broken down into smaller files, which can be obtained from multiple peers and later reassembled by the downloader. This is happening while the peer is uploading the smaller files it already has to other people in the network simultaneous. P2P technology has been the hallmark of top services such as Napster, BitTorrent, and Spotify.
- Cloud-based file sharing programs. New file sharing programs offer cloud features, wherein users can create special folders using their computers or mobile devices. The program then synchronizes the data, giving you the same folders no matter which computer will be used to view, access, download, or edit them. Files that are placed in these folders are generally accessible using a website and/or a mobile tool, and can be quickly shared with other people for viewing or collaboration. This type of software programs has become prominent these days, as can be seen in consumer solutions such as Dropbox and Google Drive.
Key Features of File Sharing Software
File sharing software is not simply a storage program with open access, but a network file transfer application that connects users and allows them to exchange different file formats through different channels. Due to competitiveness issues, developers are doing their best to stand out with advanced tool kits, the purchase of which depends solely on what you want and need. Instead of jumping on the bandwagon straight away, make sure you’re looking at the best file sharing software which has these basic functionalities:
- Data Storage – Space is essential, so make sure to adjust the quota to the needs of your team. Ideally, you should opt for unlimited storage – a more expensive option that nevertheless cures one of companies’ biggest headaches.
- Data Recovery – Data recovery is just as important as data storage, because it eliminates the risk of losing valuable information that was deleted accidentally. High quality file sharing products usually keep every file even few months after it has been deleted.
- Granular Access – Roles on file sharing platforms are usually prescribed, meaning that the admin can manage account membership in the desired manner and decide who and how is going to access the files.
- File Version History – Old and deleted files should be very easy to restore, most of the time with no more than few clicks. In order to make this possible, file sharing platforms have an integrated search function in their databases which you could use to access the desired file.
- Password Protection – Sharing data on the web is never a 100% safe solution, which is why you should make sure all protection options are steady. In the best scenario, you’ll get to protect your information with passwords and security/expiring links so that it won’t end up in the wrong hands.
- Dashboards – One of the reason why some people deny to use file sharing programs is that they imagine them as simple chat boxes with an attachment option. The reality, however, is that file sharing platform have comprehensive dashboards where the admin doesn’t only exchange files, but monitors the process and the sharing devices, and drafts reports based on it.
- Third-Party Integrations – A file sharing platform would’t make any sense to a team where somebody has to import data manually, which is why integrations are of critical importance.
- Support – Support matters for every type of software, but gains even more value when you have to exchange sensitive data the digital way. That’s why you should choose a reputable provider which is there to respond to your questions at any point of time.
Benefits of File Sharing Software
Before everything else, sharing data in cloud is convenient. It usually takes only one click to send any file to a group of users, and access is most of the time instant and reliable. Another thing file sharing platforms are good at is standardization, as they keep track of copyright laws and address regulatory frameworks we weren’t even aware of. This way, they protect us from neglecting important risks that could endanger both our business and our reputation.
Reducing paperwork and investing less time and money in information exchange is a critical step towards improved efficiency, which can be confirmed by individuals the same as leading companies. Security is often addressed as a drawback, but experts are more keen to treat it as an advantage, knowing that data is more secure in cloud than on any local server. At the same time, there is the business blessing of data retrieval, which is hardly possible on local networks. There, when a file is lost, it is usually lost forever.
Last, but not least, file sharing platforms allow unlimited access, at least in the sense of disposition. Most of them are available as mobile apps, meaning that confirmed users can access corporate information wherever they are, using nothing but a stable internet connection. The possibility to do so is probably one of the most revolutionary circumstances for decentralized teams which operate from various geographical locations.
File sharing is certainly among those software categories where it takes to imagine a function to make it happen. Developers are working devotedly to ease transfer and storage which is how few recent assumptions became facts we can already benefit from:
- Centralized File Systems. More and more sharing platforms are developing centralized databases where files can be exchanged both internally and externally. With all information hosted on a single location, companies are able to categorize them, which is probably one of the smartest and most efficient sharing solutions so far.
- IT Control. File sharing systems include more and more administrative features, such as remote wipes, oversight, and activity reporting. Business-grade control where the IT team has the role to restrict information being transmitted to personal devices is by far more logical than letting data reside in unsecured locations.
- Compliance. More and more importance is being given to compliance, especially in industries where there are strict access regulations and guidelines.
As advanced as it is,file sharing software is still developing, and there is a lot to be done to eliminate common concerns that arise prior/after purchasing the system. Here are some of the most common drawbacks you should have in mind when buying yours:
- Security Concerns. Once again – there is no way to protect data 100% when it goes viral. The network is full of resources and used by many people, and illegal activities are always at stake. What you can do, however, is to choose a reputable provider which offers granular permissions and similar access controls.
- Technical skills requirements. Most file sharing systems have simple interfaces, and allow users to send files in a matter of seconds. Still, they require at least basic computing skills to store, maintain, or retrieve data, which is why non-savvy users have to undergo training in order to work with them.
- Setup Difficulties. Even if file sharing systems are inexpensive to maintain, some of them require costly setup and numerous switches, connections, and missing network interface cards.
List of File Sharing Software Companies
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FinancesOnline employs our certified SmartScore™ mode to gather information about all the software in the File Sharing Software category in orded to help you decide on the best possible software. It pays attention to the following aspects: key components, collaboration capabilities, customization, integrations with other services, intuitiveness, customer support, how secure a software is, support for smartphones and tablets, general media ratings. Currently, ShareFile is the leader in this category and we gave it the highest score in our tests. Following thorough evaluation it had the best results among its competitors and our reviewers strongly suggest that you include it as one of the choices for your business.
An overview of general user satisfaction with the products in our File Sharing Software category calculated using our unique algorythm that finds customer reviews, comments and opinions across a wide range of social media sites in order to help you make an informed purchase decision.
Every vendor in the File Sharing Software category will have a different group of pricing plans for its app and each package will include a different set of tools. Below we list the overal pricing for the most affordable package provided for each product. Please note that advanced features may cost extra.
A summary of what type of devices and operating systems are supported by these B2B solutions in the File Sharing Software category, including mobile platforms and web-based solutions.
Check which languages and geographies are supported by the popular B2B apps in the File Sharing Software category, including services aimed at international markets and created for multi-cultural teams of employees.
Learn which pricing plans are provided by the vendors in the File Sharing Software category to check which one matches your business requirements and expenses best. Keep in mind that specific software can support free or freemium accounts for you to test first.
A brief look at which groups of companies a specific B2B platform in the File Sharing Software category is designed for, from small businesses and non-profits to large enterprises.