Thinking Inside the Cloud with OneDrive

    This post has matured and its content may no longer be relevant beyond historical reference. To see the most current information on a given topic, click on the associated category or tag.

    One of the reasons business leaders are turning to Cloud computing solutions is to find new potential in their employees by releasing their restrictions on physical media.  Cloud solutions can greatly enhance business performance through the ease of accessing data securely from almost anywhere.  Employees have found ways to access company documents in gradual methods by selecting independent components and transferring files and data on separate business applications and tools.  Cloud computing virtually eliminates the need to sneakernet or isolate solitary solutions.

    Cloud solutions can provide a new culture in a business environment through interconnected Cloud services such as private, public, and hybrid Cloud solutions. Everyone can stay on the same sheet of music through sync and share capabilities.  Several vendors have different solutions to offer for Cloud clients.  Researching vendors will pay off as they come from various industries and are new to demands of enterprise level solutions.  It is important to select a vendor that focuses on enterprise solutions that can grow to meet changing business needs with policies such as bring your own device (BYOD), mobile device management (MDM), and other requirements and technologies that require scalable and flexible solutions while maintaining security.

    Microsoft’s Office 365 Cloud-based solution enables businesses to analyze, create, share, store and sync their data and files while maintaining security through access-based requirements.  Recently Microsoft has released a standalone version of OneDrive (formerly known as SkyDrive Pro) which has been offered as part of Office 365.  OneDrive serves as personal Cloud-based storage for a business’ employees.  OneDrive is an excellent place to begin working in the Cloud in parallel to current on-premises storage networks.  The standalone OneDrive is designed for businesses to make file sync and sharing easier for clients who need access, scalability, security, and storage capacity.  File management and access is made easy in OneDrive with enhanced user experience.  OneDrive is offered at $5 a month with the Office Online Web based productivity suite.

    On April 28th Microsoft announced they have increased OneDrive’s storage to 1TB per user, a large jump from the previous 25GB of storage.  For enterprises requiring more space, 10GB can be split up to offer 500MB per user to allow storage for team sites and extra storage can be purchased for team sites at an extra $0.20 per GB a month.  Office 365 ProPlus subscribers will receive the increase in OneDrive for Business storage as well and Microsoft will help businesses migrate their data from current systems to OneDrive for Business.  Microsoft is offering special pricing as a promotion through September to help businesses get started with OneDrive for Business if they do not already subscribe to it with their current Office 365 subscriptions.  Microsoft’s OneDrive solution offers Yammer driven document conversations, Office Graph, and search and discovery solutions to present content in different ways.  The OneDrive standalone client allows users to sync their SharePoint 2013 and SharePoint Online with a personal OneDrive for Business repository or any team site to a local computer.  This sync capability gives users access to critical online and offline content.

    Customer concerns about restrictions and limitations when synchronizing SharePoint to OneDrive can be answered here: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2933738.  This site provides information on the number of items that can be synced (20,000 for the OneDrive library).  Microsoft is working on increasing the number of character types to what is listed in the support site which lists the invalid characters, character limits, and size limits for sync files.

    Microsoft believes that robust file sharing and syncing is part of an all-inclusive means for collaboration and productivity.  This is why Microsoft has provided different delivery methods to include native integration with other Office documents, connections on demand, trusted service, investment in infrastructure and certifications, and scalability.  Content can be viewed and shared with others in real time with Office Online.  One Graph and OneDrive offers more personal Cloud service to enable connected solutions where files and data are shared among teams and individuals to help increase business responses.

    Microsoft can rest its reputation on being a trusted service.  With decades of computing experience producing products adopted by businesses worldwide, their OneDrive provisions enterprise quality content management, administrative controls, compliance and one of the industry’s leading service level agreements with Office 365.  Microsoft has made investments in security, rights management, data loss prevention, auditing and more that work in OneDrive as well as Exchange and SharePoint.  These investments assure businesses and individuals their data has different levels of protection in the Cloud.  Alternate solutions and applications may not hold the same level of interlocked data on the Cloud and may require complex levels of data routing, content management and access control.

    OneDrive is part of Office 365’s $2.5 billion annual revenue along with Office for iPad, OneNote for Mac and iPad, Power BI, and Office Online.  Over one hundred updates have been sent out in the last year for these subscriptions as Microsoft continues to develop new methods to bring personalized Cloud experiences.  Microsoft has also partnered with GoDaddy and Docusign to bring industry and public sectors together.  Microsoft’s dedication to provide customers with the highest quality of file sharing and synchronization solutions is part of their Cloud-first, mobile-first efficiency experiences.