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Bring-your-own server: TeamDrive flashes cloudy sync 'n share

Blackberry and Windows mobile clients coming

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TeamDrive 3.0 provides file sync, storage and sharing for enterprise – in the cloud or on a business's own servers – with encryption keeping the data safe. But it is quick to point out that it's not just DropBox for business.

Dropbox and Box.net both offer file synchronisation and sharing services in the cloud: Dropbox for consumers and Box for enterprises. You upload copies of files to your folder in their cloud and then access them from a variety of devices – from desktop through laptop to tablet and smartphone. Any changes you make to a file stored in the cloud on one of your devices ripples through to the other devices. You can also make copies of your files accessible from all your personal devices to friends or colleagues.

But according to TeamDrive, there are problems with the DropBox model. It holds your data in the public cloud – so if it goes down, your data is not available. TeamDrive v3.0 lets you host the data in the public cloud, a private cloud, a TeamDrive cloud or on your own servers. Data sent to it from your devices is encrypted and the setup has been given a seal of approval by the Independent Centre for Data Protection in Germany (ULD).

If you host TeamDrive inside your firewall then your data is maintained on your servers under your control. You get file sync and sharing without having to use a cloud model.

TeamDrive 3.0 clients are available for Mac, Windows and Linux desktops and notebooks and IOS and Android smartphones and tablets. Support for BlackBerry and Windows Mobile is being added for release in the summer.

TeamDrive's CEO Volkjer Oboda talks up the bring-your-own-device card, saying: "Our new smartphone apps will make it easy for enterprises to implement Bring Your Own Device policies without worrying about employee Losing Their Own Device incidents. The freedom to use your own server and securely access your TeamDrive Space from a smartphone makes TeamDrive the best cloud synchronisation tool for enterprises that want to share files, but still want to protect their intellectual property.”

There is also an added legal safety net in that the kit is SafeHarbor compliant.

So another file-sync-and-share product joins the ranks of Box.net, Dropbox, Apple iCloud and Microsoft's SkyDrive. Google is also expected to follow suit with its own product, the idea being that having its own cloud file storage system will keep punters inside its walled garden, in much the same way that iCloud or SkyDrive would keep Apple's and Microsoft's customers within theirs.

How the file sync product players will fare against the new competition is going to be fun to see. ®

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