How do I integrate multiple cloud storages

Share multiple cloud storages

Michael Rupp

No matter if Dropbox, Skydrive or Google Drive - this is how you bundle several online storage devices of different sizes into one huge virtual hard drive.

EnlargeCloud storage is a dime a dozen. It is practical to be able to use several of them at the same time.
© iStockPhoto / rvlsoft

The cloud storage scene is constantly changing: New cloud storage services are springing up and the details of the offer for free storage change regularly. However, no service offers unlimited free storage space for private users and every cloud service wants to install its own client access program on the PC. So it makes sense to combine several cloud services with one another using software to form a central cloud storage facility. So instead of countless different access clients, you only have one tool that transparently controls data access to the individual services.

Shared folder for online hard drives

EnlargeBy combining various online storage media in one folder, the Drive Maxx user does not have to worry about distributing the data in the cloud.

Drive Maxx from Data Becker combines various cloud storage options. The software combines the online hard drives from Dropbox, Skydrive, Telekom Cloud and similar providers and integrates them into the Windows environment as hot folders. Web DAV storage can also be included.

The highlight: Drive Maxx checks the level of the individual offers. As soon as a cloud storage facility is full, the tool uses another service to save the data. File splitting circumvents size restrictions for individual files. The availability of the stored data is not increased, however, since the program does not store data twice. For this purpose, a targeted distribution of data stocks across different online hard drives is possible. The hot folder is also used to encrypt data. All files stored in the folder are encrypted using the AES-256 algorithm before being transferred to the online storage and decrypted on the client side when they are accessed again.

Manage and encrypt multiple cloud storages with Drive Maxx
Restrictions: At around 50 euros, Drive Maxx is quite expensive, even if you get a license for three Windows PCs on which you can set up the hot folder. Incidentally, the software automatically synchronizes the content of the individual hot folders. There are no client tools for Android and iOS and Windows 8 is not yet officially supported.
Combine cloud services on the web server
Owncloud is software for web servers to save and synchronize data. The program is installed, for example, on the server of the provider on which you host your homepage. Owncloud is intended for companies that do not want to save their data with Dropbox & Co. However, you can also integrate external cloud storage from Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3 and other providers into Dropbox. The setup is a bit fiddly, but can be done quickly with a little experience in configuring a web server. Owncloud is only of limited relevance for Windows users.
Bundle the storage space of popular cloud providers

EnlargeTeamdrive: With this workgroup tool and cloud aggregator, you expand the available online storage space by integrating Web DAV services.

If you want to use several of the aforementioned cloud storage options, Teamdrive gives you uniform access to all services directly on your desktop. The tool makes a secure drive available on the Internet, which recruits its storage space from cloud services via Web-DAV. It is synchronized with a local folder on your PC. The tool combines the online storage of other providers into an overall pool. This means that the online storage can be expanded as required. With the Teamdrive Cloud, the software manufacturer also offers 2 GB of free storage space that can be used to store documents. So if you integrate the Telekom Cloud with 25 GB of free storage in the Teamdrive area, you expand the storage area managed by Teamdrive from 2 to 27 GB. The software itself costs around 30 euros for twelve months in the version Teamdrive Personal, which is suitable for private users.

How to get 25 GB of cloud storage for Lau

EnlargeTeamdrive combines the cloud storage space provided by several services into a single drive with encryption and mobile access via Android and iOS.

Integrate storage: In Teamdrive you address the cloud storage via your Web DAV address, which you can see after logging in in your customer menu under “Users and access” in the “product details”. In addition to being integrated into your Teamdrive area, you can address the cloud storage via a browser interface or via the file transfer protocols FTP and SFTP. Before saving, the data is automatically encrypted by the Teamdrive client program. If you would like to set up additional storage devices that you want to synchronize with Web-DAV via an online storage provider, select the "Settings" entry from the "Extras" menu. There you select the “Server Access” icon and click on the “New WebDAV Server” option.

Synchronize data: Teamdrive monitors any folder in your Windows file system and synchronizes the encrypted content with a freely selectable online storage. You can synchronize this content with other PCs or smartphones. You can also share data areas with friends or colleagues by setting up specially defined areas. Only these areas are visible to the other users. In addition, you can assign the access rights individually.

Mobile use: The large number of supported platforms speaks in favor of Teamdrive: In addition to Windows, Linux and Mac OS, there are also Teamdrive apps for Android and iOS.

Which cloud storage offers the most space?
Distributed file system for cloud storage
The open source project Tahoe-LAFS is pursuing an exciting approach, which adapts the peer-to-peer principle to cloud storage: the software bundles several online storage sources into a common cloud data raid. If a file is now saved on the virtual Tahoe LAFS drive, it is automatically divided into several small pieces, which are then saved across the various storage sources. Since each cloud storage only manages a bit of the entire file, no service provider can do anything with the stored data. Encrypting the data before dividing it into data segments is intended to prevent the data bits from being read out. The software encrypts the data in such a way that cloud providers cannot access it. In addition, Tahoe-LAFS ensures redundancy by storing the data using checksums in such a way that they can still be read out and used even if a cloud storage device fails. Once the tool has been set up, the user does not notice any of this. So far, however, Tahoe-LAFS is only available for Linux.