Secure FIle Sharing: It’s All Just Data In The Cloud…

Secure file sharing has been a niche for data in the cloud that has not been exploited well in the past.  Secure file sharing is obviously something that every business has a need for, but short of setting up a clunky FTP site and managing permissions manually — how do you do it? Many of us know large fortune 500 and 100 companies that are currently relying on software like Dropbox, which provided user friendliness and ease-of-use, but almost no security whatsoever. Time are definitely changing…

In today’s blog we’ll examine Sharefile, how it fits into the array of Cloud offerings Citrix currently has, and what the benefits are to users.  We’ve had an opportunity to play with it in the field recently, and we’ve put together a nice little review for everyone — Enjoy!

Now that Citrix has aquired Sharefile and brought them into their list of cloud offerings, it would appear that Sharefie will be poised to grab the lead in an emerging market of cloud data offerings.  While Sharefile does a good job offering a friendly user interface as well as easy permissions control, it also offers state of the art encryption — Which Dropbox certainly does not.  In addition, Sharefile allows companies to keep control over their own cloud data rather than give it up to a third party.  This is important for high security cloud implementations that require their data to be kept internally on an enterprise file share.

For companies looking to save time on management and that don’t require internal storage, Citrix also has a plan to allow files to be kept securely on outsourced servers so there is virtually no infrastructure management required.  Pricing seems competitive as well, with basic plans starting under $30, and working their way up to $300 for companies that need the full suite of advanced features.

Sharefile can easily be set up and integrated on Citrix Xendesktop if you have a use case where you need to manage secure cloud data from a VDI solution.   Such capability is demonstrated by the video below:

Sharefile seems to be a good solution for dealing with moving large files through the cloud as well.  It currently boasts the ability to handle files as large as 10GB, so it will come in handy when needing to move PVS Vdisks, VM Memory dumps, and other large files that can’t be emailed.  Having the ability to upload large files into the cloud and then distribute a secure link to those files so they can be downloaded by multiple recipients is a great tool to have in your arsenal when troubleshooting.  We’ve already used it multiple times for uploading dumps, and transfering virtual disks or VM templates.

If you wish to make a file you’ve uploaded into the cloud no longer available, you can simply expire the link and remove access to it from the Sharefile server.  This is an important feature that Dropbox did not have, and something that can give you ultimate control over your cloud data files.

Another nice feature of Sharefile is that clients have the ability to upload files to your account.  You simply log into your Sharefile account and give them access, which will generate an automated email to them with a URL and security credentials.  The client can then send you files which will appear in your Sharefile account.  This feature is great for consultants, support personnel, and anyone needing to interact with clients who may need to send you files through the cloud.

Overall, Sharefile looks to be a great aquisition for Citrix and an offering that will greatly solidify their cloud data offerings.  With no other clear leaders emerging in this niche, it would appear that Citrix has jumped to the forefront and is set to dominate the secure cloud data field for the forseeable future.

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