Cloud service for backup-storage of your music collection?
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rgs9200m

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What is a good provider of cloud storage for a music collection (on a Windows computer)?
I have Google Drive, but I notice that it has trouble downloading a large complex directory structure if you want to recover things. (The Google Drive support forums complain about this constantly.)

I also tried Dropbox, but I have data on external drives, and it would oddly fill up my C disk rather than just copy things to the cloud. It seems more oriented to mirroring your computer rather than simple offline storage. I dropped Dropbox because of this.

Is there a better service with easier back and forth data transmission of large chunks of data?

I'm just looking for safekeeping and an easy way to recover things, not to use the storage real time or anything complicated like that. And I just want to upload/download things manually. I don't need real-time automatic mirroring.

Thanks.
 
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gimmeheadroom

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I am totally opposed to this but I'll throw out a few data points since I use several products at work against my will.

Google drive is good enough for documents. But I would not use it for music or anything that needs reliable bandwidth. And like everything, it sometimes goes offline. Last couple of days I was using a new laptop for work and PDFs that were on google drive took a long time to load in Adobe reader. If it had been music it would have been even more frustrating and unusable. I cannot say I have ever seen problems based on directory structure on any of the Big Three (google, onedrive, box). But I can say OneDrive has problems with certain filenames. This can be an issue depending whether you share across *NIX and Android and Windows or are Windows-only.

I hate box. It has caused the guys in our group countless problems. Whereas Google drive seems to really act like a drive, box (at least the way the rocket surgeons running the IT OPS in our company set it up) seem to create an additional drive that both seems to mirror your actual data and be a separate copy of it. But there is something wrong with it, we had several guys who wanted box off their PC and when they deleted the box directory on their PC it also deleted all the real data on their PC. So we got to spend several days restoring from backups.

There are a lot of paid services that seem ok for what you said- pure archiving. Personally, what I would look for is the right privacy policy and zero-knowledge of your data, with end-to-end encryption using keys generated on endpoint devices and not owned by the server (i.e. not dropbox, google, onedrive etc.) And I would want scp and rsync access. As you pointed out, services designed for mirroring can be problematic. Ideally we want a bunch of storage we can manage how we want, and we want to be able to do whatever we want to that storage without destroying computers in the process.

I don't use any cloud service for archiving, I run my own servers. I know this is not a choice for most people. I use cloud services only for moving stuff around between devices in distant lands, far, far away. But I think people should consider a turnkey NAS before they go for a cloud provider. When you use a good NAS and start to learn to manage it the way you want, you will have a lot more power over your data and it should amortize itself over a few years.
 
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Are you looking for a solution where you can quickly restore files, or a cloud storage solution that provides inexpensive storage but may need a few hours to queue up data for restoration should you need to?

There are a lot of software and cloud storage solutions that work. The following is what I've been using for the last 3-4 years successfully:

You need a front end to manage the backup and restore processes that has native support for cloud storage. It's been recently renamed, but Cloudberry is a fairly low cost front end that has a very easy to use GUI - there are free solutions, but most of the freeware will take more knowledge to setup.

For storage, if you need near real time restore capabilities, Amazon S3 works well. If you can wait 2-4 hours for a restore to be executed, Amazon Glacier is a far lower cost option. I maintain various backups on Glacier that come to almost 3TB or storage - monthly cost is typically around $8. Since Glacier pricing is largely based on the level of transactions and less on storage volume, files that rarely change (like audio/video) are ideal candidates for Glacier storage.

The issue with using local storage like NAS is it's susceptibility to the same events that might also damage your primary storage. Not wishing this on anyone, but a fire/burglary/natural disaster is probably going to take out your main computer and your NAS, leaving no good recovery options. Basically all of the cloud storage options offer more encryption than most people will ever need, particularly for music storage where there isn't any personal information at risk. I'd take it even further and state that Amazon AWS is much less likely to be hacked than your home system unless you work as a network security expert. Their entire business model would collapse if they had serious security issues and Amazon spends literally hundreds of millions a year to reduce risk. Nothing is guaranteed, but in 2020, cloud storage is a relatively low risk proposition.
 
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rgs9200m

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Thanks for those ideas. I did not know about Glacier or Cloudberry.
Yep, Dropbox is trying to be way too smart for its own good.
 
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bfreedma

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Thanks for those ideas. I did not know about Glacier or Cloudberry.
Yep, Dropbox is trying to be way too smart for its own good.
If you have any questions as you look into this further, happy to answer if I can.

The usual file shares (Box/Dropbox/OneDrive) really don't fit the requirements for backing up music - they are great for general file storage and file sharing/coediting, but are cost prohibitive for long term storage of data that doesn't change or get edited frequently. Glacier is great as a tertiary backup for true disaster recovery. Like the other poster, I use a NAS for local storage as they are far more resilient than single disk internal storage. Glacier is only there if I lose both local copies and in that case, I won't care if it takes a little longer to restore.

What's nice about a good front end backup solution like Cloudberry is that it allows you to work with your backed up data using the familiar directory tree structure. Glacier is made for script based calls (a headache unless you do it all the time) and the Cloudberry GUI overlays the standard Glacier interface and essentially builds the calls to storage on the fly as you select files and/or directories through the user interface.
 
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rgs9200m

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Ok, thanks. That looks good. I also use Idrive, but it is way too expensive and also hard to download groups of things.
It almost seems like you need to zip (7zip) your music, but then you are dealing with huge files that are almost impractical to work with unless you partition them, which itself is a pain.

I'm surprised how hard this is to do.

And yep, I want the data to be in the cloud, not just physically located in my house somewhere. It's already backed up on many external drives, so a local server is not what I'm looking for. I put tons of work into creating all this.
 
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I am totally opposed to this but I'll throw out a few data points since I use several products at work against my will.

Google drive is good enough for documents. But I would not use it for music or anything that needs reliable bandwidth. And like everything, it sometimes goes offline. Last couple of days I was using a new laptop for work and PDFs that were on google drive took a long time to load in Adobe reader. If it had been music it would have been even more frustrating and unusable. I cannot say I have ever seen problems based on directory structure on any of the Big Three (google, onedrive, box). But I can say OneDrive has problems with certain filenames. This can be an issue depending whether you share across *NIX and Android and Windows or are Windows-only.

I hate box. It has caused the guys in our group countless problems. Whereas Google drive seems to really act like a drive, box (at least the way the rocket surgeons running the IT OPS in our company set it up) seem to create an additional drive that both seems to mirror your actual data and be a separate copy of it. But there is something wrong with it, we had several guys who wanted box off their PC and when they deleted the box directory on their PC it also deleted all the real data on their PC. So we got to spend several days restoring from backups.

There are a lot of paid services that seem ok for what you said- pure archiving. Personally, what I would look for is the right privacy policy and zero-knowledge of your data, with end-to-end encryption using keys generated on endpoint devices and not owned by the server (i.e. not dropbox, google, onedrive etc.) And I would want scp and rsync access. As you pointed out, services designed for mirroring can be problematic. Ideally we want a bunch of storage we can manage how we want, and we want to be able to do whatever we want to that storage without destroying computers in the process.

I don't use any cloud service for archiving, I run my own servers. I know this is not a choice for most people. I use cloud services only for moving stuff around between devices in distant lands, far, far away. But I think people should consider a turnkey NAS before they go for a cloud provider. When you use a good NAS and start to learn to manage it the way you want, you will have a lot more power over your data and it should amortize itself over a few years.
I can 100% agree with this minus the issues with Drive/Box. Ive been using Box for 10+ years and never once had an issue with it. That being said, these types of cloud services are not meant to be for streaming audio, all issues aside. They are really a "backup" of your local files that can be accessed from multiple PC's. I use Google Music as my backup location for my music, but it is also stored on my NAS. If it has to be in the cloud, maybe take a look at a VPS server that has a monthly fee with no ingress/egress data caps? You could run something like a subsonic server from it for serving up your music remotely.
 
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