There's a catch, but this impressive cloud service lets you back up data, share and sync like Dropbox, and access files on the go with mobile apps.
If you're looking for free cloud storage, you probably know the popular options: 2GB from Dropbox, 5GB from Box and SugarSync, 7GB from SkyDrive, 15GB from Google Drive, and so on.
Of course, these services aren't really built with backup in mind, and even if they were, that's probably not enough free space to handle your archival needs.
California-based SurDoc raises the bar by offering 100GB of free cloud storage for one year. After that, you'll pay a very reasonable $30 annually to keep the space.
Update: SurDoc has been down for the better part of the day. I don't know if that's because of a massive rush of new signups or something else, but it does give me pause about recommending the service. If I'm able to get an explanation from a company rep, I'll add another update. Stay tuned!
After signing up for your account (which requires only an e-mail address and password, no credit card), you'll download the SurDoc desktop client, which is available for Windows and Mac. (I tested the former.) I found this an admirably simple tool for choosing the folders you want to back up, a function SurDoc does continuously and in the background.
You can also choose any folder path for real-time, Dropbox-style syncing with your account. And SurDoc offers mobile apps for both Android and iOS, though you can also access and share your files via any Web browser (including mobile ones).
Another nice perk: You're not limited to a single PC. Your freebie account lets you back up from unlimited machines. As for file sharing, it works much the way it does with other services: SurDoc generates a link you can copy and paste, but also has one-click options for sharing via e-mail, Facebook, Twitter, and so on.
If 100GB somehow isn't enough space, SurDoc will give you even more for referring friends (10GB per) and sharing files (1GB each).
I suppose the concern with any cloud-storage service is longevity: Will SurDoc even be around for a year? The company is not quite two years old, having secured some $4 million in venture-capital funding from IDG Ventures back in late 2011. That's no guarantee of anything, of course, so you'll have to decide whether it's worth trusting your data to a relative unknown.In any case, thanks to reader Chad for sharing this deal!
Bonus deal: Hablo prize money? To help kick off CNET en Espanol, the folks upstairs have unveiled the Mucho Dinero Sweeps, a chance to win $5,000 in cold hard cash just for signing up for the CNET Insider Newsletter. What would you do with an extra $5K in your bank account? Me, I'd blow it on an awesome family vacation.
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