Storing data online & piping data info to a file
July 24, 2006 3:41 PM   Subscribe

I'm selling my current computer soon. There's a few GB worth of files that I'd like to preserve. Are there any free or cheap online services that will provide this service? I'll only need access to it once or twice later on, to restore it on my new computer. I only have a few blank CDs and not enough time to burn everything, and no concurrent access to the two computers. Besides, I prefer flexible online access. On a related note, I'd like store some information about the files in a text file. In the good ol' DOS days, I could pipe the 'dir' output to a text file. Except these files have some metadata that can't be displayed in the command prompt. Equivalent functionality for Windows Explorer or other GUI shells?
posted by Gyan to Computers & Internet (22 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
posted by TheRaven at 3:44 PM on July 24, 2006

Probably be cheaper to buy a DVD burner ($30) and backup your files to a 1 or 2 DVDs.

Online services arent that cheap and its going to take a long time to upload a couple gigs on residential broadband.

Regarding metadata, what kind of files are you trying to store information on? Theres lot of command line apps that will out metadata from files they recognize ,
posted by mhuie at 3:49 PM on July 24, 2006

yahoo mail - N accounts = N gigabytes.
posted by sergeant sandwich at 3:54 PM on July 24, 2006

Best answer: I use this. Works good, very reliable.
posted by ifranzen at 4:07 PM on July 24, 2006

1GB free. Get as many accounts as you need.

Also see this article
posted by JohnnyGunn at 4:08 PM on July 24, 2006 [1 favorite]

ifranzen beat me to it...
posted by JohnnyGunn at 4:09 PM on July 24, 2006

You might consider buying a smallish (20 GB or so) external hard drive instead.

Consider Take Command to bring back the command prompt in a GUI environment.
posted by megatherium at 4:51 PM on July 24, 2006

Response by poster: I think will take care of storage.

Now about collecting mp3 metadata in a text file. Any ideas?
posted by Gyan at 5:21 PM on July 24, 2006 is sweet. Bonus points if you have it mounted as a drive (as detailed here).

ifranzen beat me to it...
posted by ifranzen at 5:21 PM on July 24, 2006 [1 favorite]

Best answer: "Metadata" is a pretty broad term... what type of data about MP3 files do you want to collect? If It's just a list of song names, and track information, and general information about the file, I'd download iTunes and use the "File->Export File List" feature. You can customize it to show all types of different information about your tracks. Let me know if this helps.

Now about collecting mp3 metadata in a text file. Any ideas?

posted by ifranzen at 5:25 PM on July 24, 2006

I highly recommend an external harddrive, or a 'thumb' drive (keychain USB drive) if you can find one big enough.

Much easier than online solutions, even free ones, more secure, and they continue to be useful later.
posted by ®@ at 5:34 PM on July 24, 2006

Amazon's S3 is $0.15 per GB stored per month and $0.20 per GB transferred. The only advantage I can see to using online storage is that you don't have to worry about lugging around the media and it's available whenever and wherever there's an internet connection.

The advantage to using Amazon is that you know they'll be here 5 years from now and that the chances of them deciding to radically change the terms are pretty small.
posted by rdr at 5:46 PM on July 24, 2006

Gspace, too. 2 gig per account.
posted by Terminal Verbosity at 5:55 PM on July 24, 2006

uploading that much data is painful. DVD burner or external drive will give you much less headaches.

Have you thought about pulling your current drive and selling the computer without a hdd / with a new hard drive. Then you don't have to worry about anybody else getting your data.
posted by defcom1 at 5:57 PM on July 24, 2006

If you think CD burning is slow, try uploading a gig of data at the typical 128kbit speed.

The fastest option is simply to buy the smallest external drive you can find. If your main worry is time, unless you have access to an unusually good network, uploading is NOT how to do this.
posted by Malor at 6:12 PM on July 24, 2006

Seconding Amazon's S3 combined with Jungle Disk. Crazy cheap.
posted by blag at 6:23 PM on July 24, 2006

I like this for using Gmail for stashing stuff so I can get it from any computer with internet access. 1 Gmail account will give you about 2.7 GB of storage. Similar to GSpace above but for IE.
posted by white_devil at 6:39 PM on July 24, 2006

Carbonite is a great remote backup service, only $5/mo for unlimited storage. It can take a few days to get to everything, if you have a lot to backup (it starts throttling after 50GB). Best of all, they have a free 15-day trial, so you may not need to pay at all (but I recommend you do).
posted by Rock Steady at 8:18 PM on July 24, 2006

Dude...40GB USB hard drive! Plug in, drag your files over, come back in an hour. Done.

whereisit has worked great for years for cataloging my (data) CD library since 1999. $40...searchable, easy to use, gets data like bitrate (for audio and video) and color depth and image size (for images). It even catalogs ZIP's worth it. Try downloading it and see what you think.
posted by ostranenie at 9:28 PM on July 24, 2006

It is going to take a long time to upload a few gigs to an online service, but if you are married to it for this application, I use Strongspace and I love it. The nice thing about Strongspace is if you want to share any files you can create read-only users and give them access to certain directories.

I used Strongspace to send a large Happy Birthday video to a friend in Japan last week. :)
posted by Famous at 5:43 AM on July 25, 2006

Any online service you use will have complete access to all of your files unless you encrypt of password protect them, but then you can only access them online.

I would jump on NewEgg or just go to Wal-mart and by the smallest HD they have, prolly a 40GB which you can then use as a backup storage device. I use an external one for my nightly backups, the smallest I've seen is 120GB but YMMV.

posted by BillyG at 6:12 AM on July 25, 2006

Jungle Disk - fifteen cents a gigabyte, works on Windows, Mac, and Linux, has an open source version so there's no vendor lockin, stores the data on Amazon S3.
posted by dmd at 8:12 AM on July 25, 2006

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