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Review: Copy, a fantastic online storage and sync service

Copy_Horizontal_BannerUpdate Feb. 6th 2016: Copy has announced that will discontinue their service on May 1st 2016. You can read the post here.

 

Continuing with my “crusade” to find the perfect online storage platform, its now the turn of Copy.com, a freshly launched service by Barracuda Networks a well known network and anti-spam security player in the market.

The first thing that catches your attention to try Copy.com is their incredible referral system. Because they are new on this segment, they want to be sure everybody tries Copy.com, and to do so they had the brilliant idea of giving away a 15 GB free account, and if you register through a referral link (like mine here) you can get 20 GB of free space. But the good part doesn’t stops here, for each person you recommend and registers to their platform through your own referral link, validates their email address and installs the client software, Copy.com will credit you 5 GB of additional space. For the moment, they are not limiting how much
space you can get for free, so take advantage now if you need online storage, I already have 250 GB 535 GB:) (Update: I already passed 3  4 TB of free storage!!!)

515GB

The all in all functionality of Copy is very similar to Dropbox, you have one centralized folder where everything you move or copy there is automatically uploaded to Copy.com cloud´s service and synced among your computers. You can access your files from Windows, MacOS, Linux, Android and iOS devices. Security wise they transfer everything over SSL and they encrypt the data on their servers using a combination of public and private key and AES 256.

But there are some specific specs that make Copy.com unique and a potential market shaker:

– You don’t need to copy or move files necessarily to the main folder: This has been the most requested spec Dropbox was unable to provide since a long long time, and Copy.com does it very well. You can just create a shortcut of any folder on your computer to the Copy.com folder and all the content of the destination shortcut will be copied and synced online too! So no more being stuck to one folder for your stuff, just leave the things where you are used to on your PC and create shortcuts, it works beautifully. Oddly this is not advertised as a main feature on their “About” page, I think they should.

You can set permissions to files you share: Copy.com allows you to set permissions on the folders you share. For example you can set a user to “Can Edit & Sync” or to “View Only”. The interface to do this unfortunately needs some polishing, I was unable to find the permissions management options within the application, for example on the sharing tab (where I think it should be) but instead, I had to go to the Copy.com online website, and then to the shared folder to see the sharing permissions. Anyways the job is done, and this is also something Dropbox users have been asking since a lot ago, Copy.com delivered!

– Fair Sharing: If you want to share a folder the amount of used space is splitted between the members joining the account. So if you share a 50 GB folder is not that everybody´s account will get 50 GB used (like Dropbox does), but instead all the users will give a part of their storage for that share. To explain this clearly I will paste the explanation from Zack, support at Copy.com:

– User A wants to share a 50GB file with User B

– User A and user B both have 100GB accounts, so in any case, this is no issue.

– User B syncs the file. Both users then see only 25GB of space used for that specific share.

– User A decides to share again with another user, User C.

– User C decides to sync and now everyone sees this share using about 16GB of space .

– User A then wants to share with user D, but user D only has a 5GB Copy account.

– User D would need about 12.5GB free to sync User A’s share (because 50GB / 4 = 12.5)

– User D would then not be able to sync that folder.

– Price Friendly: Their plans are very attractive, you start with your free 20 GB account (using a referral link), and then if you need more you can upgrade to Pro account which would give you 250 GB of space for USD 10 a month or USD 99 a year. Or if you even need more you can get a 500 GB account for USD 14,99 a month or USD 149 a year. I find their prices really fair, they actually match with the suggested prices I wrote about on this post some weeks ago 🙂

Things that Copy.com need to improve

– Speed transfers: I´ve tested uploading a 1 GB file to Copy.com and the speed was around 230 KB/s, is not that bad, but when compared to Dropbox the same file was being uploaded at 627 KB/s. I live in Switzerland and I have a 100 Mbps/7 Mbps cable connection.

– Security: I think a great functionality that could be added to the service is the possibility to use End to End Encryption. Not everybody feels OK with uploading their stuff to the “cloud” because of privacy. At least they could create a “Vault” folder that everything stored there will be encrypted on the client´s computer so nobody can ever get to access that information, no matter what. The “Zero Knowledge” offered by others like BitCasa, SpiderOak and CrashPlan, its really the way to go in regards of security. Being a service offered by Barracuda Network which has always worked on security products, I think this is a must for Copy.com.

Conclusion

As a new service Copy.com is doing a fantastic job, their syncing works beautifully and their referral program its by far one of the bests available in regards of Online Storage platforms. If they listen to what the customers ask for and the feedback they receive from users, this service could really make a lot of noise in the market.
Test it by yourself, get 15 GB for free at Copy.com directly or even better get 20 GB for free through my referral link. Let us know on the comments what do you think about the service.

Note: To get the 20 GB be sure to:

1) Register through my referral link.
2) Validate your email address by clicking on the email Copy sends (check your spam folder just in case).
3) Install the client software on your computer and log in at least once.

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Web + Tech Junkie = Geek. IT Solutions Specialist and entrepreneur. Process improver fan, food lover and blogger. I try to write about different technology topics in this blog.

67 Comments

  1. What’s the hype with Copy? Saw lot of their reviews and comment everywhere these days. Never use them before and heard there’s free storage going on for them too.

  2. I’ve been using Copy on iPhone, iPad and Macbook Pro for 2 months now and all are working perfectly. It’s a quality product well supported.

  3. Been using Dropbox and iCloud for some time now, but of course I ran out of space. Wanted to avoid having to may “membership fees” and a friend referred me to Copy! You start off with 15 GB FREE (or 20 GB if you register through a referral code – see mine below). He has some 500+ GB racked up in free storage through referrals. Again its completely FREE so sign up and try it out!! Thanks and goodluck 

  4. Thanks for the write up. I’ve been using Copy for a few months now, and the speed has been very good. It’s faster than DropBox and much faster than Google Drive, and Copy gives you 20 gigs to start with

  5. Copy works very well. I’ve tried it for one week now and everything is OK.

  6. Absolutely no problems with either the desktop or iPhone app so far, and fantastic value. Watch out Dropbox!

  7. I just received the news from Sugarsync they are stopping all free accounts in February 2014.So after doing a lot of research I found Copy to be the best option for those of us that just want to backup and sync a few GBs for free. I used someone else’s referral link to get the 15 + 5 GB account, which is pretty much what I had with Sugarsync, so I’m happy with that.

  8. Undeniably consider that that you stated.
    Your favourite reason appeared to be on the web the easiest factor to understand of.
    I say to you, I certainly get irked at the same time as other folks think about issues that they just do not realize about.
    You managed to hit the nail upon the top and outlined out the
    entire thing with no need side-effects , other people could take a signal.

    Will likely be again to get more. Thanks

  9. Copy.com upload speed is at 50% speed of Dropbox sync (180KB/s vs 400KB/s)
    Overall Copy.com is great Dropbox replacement.

    Something interesting: I have 2GB on my account, one directory has 1GB, I shared this directory with someone, my usage dropped to 1,5GB, then I stop sharing this directory and my usage is now 1GB. I still have the same data as before.

  10. would anybody be able to help me out in getting some space? please? i use it to upload the music i create and WAV files are just huge.. so please guys this would help me out so much you have no idea..

  11. Does anyone else find syncing to be EXTREMELY slow? Both Dropbox and Google Drive are exponentially faster relative to Copy.

    • I’m trying to synchronize 30 or gb, and so far it’s been *impossible*. Copy is just too slow, and it isn’t working at all. I’m trying both with a Mac and an Ubuntu machine.

  12. I’ve been using Copy for a few weeks now. Pretty sure I’ll be sticking with it.

  13. Copy is really a great thing. I love the fact, that they provide a native support for linux – in my case Ubuntu – and it works well. Also the synchronization speed (upload/download) is not really slower than Dropbox.

  14. Love the service! Has completely replaced DB for me

  15. Pretty cool! Used your link to sign up and already did a couple of tests.

    Fair storage is very nice and an excellent change from what other services offer. The iOS app still needs a bit of polishing but the basic functionality is there.

    Regarding speed, I don’t think that should be the deciding factor but, from my tests is not too bad.

  16. I have just created a copy account for myself and three colleagues, I am trouble syncing the accounts and the desktop app. Can anyone help? Thanks

  17. Yes, Copy is fantastic and one of the best coud storage.

  18. Copy is a great service. I’m using it everyday without any problems.

    Their mobile application works perfect too.

  19. Just signed up on copy. Couldn’t resist to the 250GB and bought an annual membership for 99$. Now I have 255GB. Hope it lives up to my expectations. I really like the service so far.

    I would also like if it had a cheaper membership, like 100GB for 49$/year. 99$ is still much even if the service is great.

  20. Heh I’ve been using Copy now for a few days and yes the upload rate is slower than dropbox. The main advantage of Dropbox at the moment though is the ability to sync my Android phone music folder with my Dropbox using DROPSYNC.

    Is there something similar with COPY?

    That is the problem with the name Copy, it returns to many generic search hits.

    Cheers.

  21. Just a side note: I LOVE the idea of FAIR SHARE. It’s juste amazing to be able to split it among all the users.

    Dropbox should definitely find some inspiration there, especially as it’s actually the same space split among the users. Especially for team work, it’s just stupid to have a 1GB folder shared among 20 persons taking 20GB supposedly.

  22. The service seems pretty nice, but especially with the free 20GB it’s really too slow to upload to. They really need to bring it up to speed with Drive or Dropbox (or at least half the speed) to make people switch. I can’t leave my computer on all night for a 1GB upload…

    • I don’t have your speed problems. I can upload at at least 500/600 KB/s from Switzerland, it has improved a lot since they launched, I am in Switzerland. But well maybe when they grow more they can improve your connectivity too. I have uploaded already 350 GB of more than 2 TB that I have available without any issues till now.

  23. I’ve just started using Copy. My first impression is that syncing is very slow or buggy (not sure yet). A search feature would be welcome too. But I think that they have to implement tags or comments, as when number of files grow, it becomes pratically impossible to manage. My 2 cents

  24. I use COPY for backup all my workflow of photography. So i you also want 15GB of space and help me with some extra storage. Use my link to create a account:

  25. I’m interested (mainly due to the potential to gain tons of additional storage), but with all new services, I’m not sure how long this is going to last. Is their business model sustainable? Or are they going to need to shut down after realizing they’re losing money on it? Nirvanix, EMC, and Iron Mountain have all shut down, forcing users to retrieve their files before they’re gone for good. My point is, it would be horrible to have to download all the uploaded files if Copy.com does end of failing. Investing the time needed to upload files as a back up only to see them disappear after a few years isn’t worth it IMO.

    Granted, Copy.com is backed by a well-known and trusted company – the backlash would be horrible PR. They’ve obviously taken into account their costs, etc. before launching this service, so I hope that’s enough to keep them online.

    On a related note, doesn’t this render SugarSync useless? I’m currently using SugarSync to automatically back up my documents… but the massive amount of storage at Copy.com is appealing.

    • Hi Tim, Thanks for sharing your opinion, you definitely have a point. My suggestion is, make sure you have a local copy of your stuff just in case something goes wrong. Having multiple copies of your files is something you would like to have. I have 1.7 TB of storage in Copy and I am using it as an offsite backup service and to be able to share files with friends and family.
      I agree that because of all the free space you can get other services seem to be a no deal at all! I would
      Suggest you get as much space as you can with the referral links before they decide to stop to be so generous. Like most of this type of services not everybody uses all the storage space they have, that’s why they can offer a lot of it.

      • Heh nice amount of storage you have there 🙂

        How much of it are you actually using though? I think if I do end of up using Copy, I’ll most likely use it for hosting remote backups of files and family photos. There’s really no need to delete anything in this day and age because storage is so abundant and cheap.

        I guess I’m just uneasy with the fact that Copy is a new and unproven service – if it was to go down after I spent hours uploading gigabytes of files, I’d be pissed.

        • I am just using 360 GB for now…but I can upload more stuff of course 🙂

          If you have a second local backup and you use Copy as a third level you should be on the safe side. 😉

  26. A note of caution. My wife and I have both recently signed up for the Copy cloud storage service and disappointingly have found it to be very unreliable. It is vital that cloud services are both easy to use and total reliable – this is not the case with the Copy service. Usability is good, but the PC/Laptop Copy syncing application is fraught with bugs, and basically doesn’t work. On both my own and my wife’s Copy accounts the Copy desktop syncing application reports all files are up to date and sync’ed to our cloud storage when this is not the case. Deleted files also keep reappearing.

    I am a professional software product developer, and I think it beggars belief that a large company like Barracuda Networks can release such an appallingly bad bit of software for what needs to be a totally reliable service.

    • Hi Julian, thanks for sharing your experience, I once in a while had a problem but nothing to worry about. I would suggest you send the problems you where having to [email protected] so they can improve whatever they need to improve.

      Anyways, as you may already know as a developer, I would always have different levels of backups, being the first one a media in your own house, and the third on an offsite backup. If you even want to be more sure about it then add another remote site that gets a copy from the origin.

      I am wondering did you try BitCasa? I am testing it since several months but the amount of errors makes it totally unusable…After more than 60 emails exchange reporting problems and after re installing my computer 2 times they stopped responding my emails.

    • I agree with Julian Andrews 100%. The sync function leaves much to be desired. The large amount of free space copy offers drew me in as a customer initially, but I’m actually in the middle of transferring all my files back to dropbox currently. Using copy actually gave dropbox paid business from me now because I just went pro on dropbox to make up for the space i was using on copy for free. They need to fix their bugs quick if they want to out due their long standing, reliable competitor.

      • Joshua, thanks for sharing your experience.

        I also agree that on several things Dropbox is very reliable, although they need to innovate…But their plans are SO expensive when compared to others that is really crazy.

        I use Dropbox for documents and important stuff, and make a backup of the Dropbox folder through a shortcut into the Copy Folder.

        I am using Copy and I haven’t noticed any problem with the Sync (not that I am aware of, yet) I have 1.5 TB of free space there so its really tempting not to use it 🙂

        I did contacted [email protected] several times with doubts, some problems and suggestions…

        There are many many players nowadays, the ones that are more reliable are the ones that will remain being players. The others are just trying….

        Guys if you have any other services please let me know so I can test them 😉 thanks!

  27. Hi.. I am searching for an app for Symbian S60.. I think they aren’t yet supporting it… They are neglecting a considerable chunk of people who are using Nokia Business phones… I think they should support symbian as well.. I have dropped mail to their support team.

    • Hi Rahul, I think people still using Symbian OS on their phones should change their phones. That platform is dead and has been replaced by iOS, Android and Windows Mobile. 🙂 I am sorry you still have that OS on your phone.

  28. recently loaded copy.com to windows 8 machine and it won’t sync. Dropbox did. Really annoying. Can’t find help for this. Any ideas?

    • HI Todd, sounds strange…Did you contact [email protected] for help already? It might be a good idea as it doesnt sounds normal.

  29. I have to agree – copy is great cloud service.
    https://copy.com?r=K2ysi4

  30. Hi, I’m a new user to copy. i added some files on my work computer (Windows). On iMac (at home), i don’t see that file on my iMac at home. however when I checked web interface, the files were there. please help. by the way i use the same account credentials for both computers.

    • Hi Pete, I would suggest you write to [email protected] they are very kind and will be able to help you for sure! 😉

      • Thank you very much Fernando.

  31. I’m using Skydrive and Google drive and I thought I’ll give Copy.com a try. Skydrive have the best user interface with photo gallery but its very slow in steaming videos. Google drive is great in performance but there’s no photo gallery or thumbnails for iOS; what a major flaw! Copy.com has thumbnails but no photo gallery. Copy.com is the slowest of all the cloud storage services. Videos will play only after waiting for the whole video to be downloaded instead of playing while its steaming. I’m very dissapointed with Copy.com! So slow its unbearable.

    • Yes, I agree that for online content viewing is not very good…They are still slow. But I hope they improve this part. On the meantime I have a very big amount of Storage online and for free with automatic Syncing for my offsite backup and sharing! 🙂

  32. Great review. Dropbox rocks but Copy is catching up quick. Now they have released a developer API, I hope that we will see more apps integrate with it. The outstanding data allowance just blows away – great for sharing videos and pics with a ton of people. Dropbox runs out of space just too fast.

    • Exactly! If they do it right, they could really take away Dropbox customers from them 🙂

  33. I don’t understand Copy too well. I have not used any other Cloud storage application. I need help in understanding this:

    I don’t understand why all my files go to an internal folder. I’m trying to get rid of many of my files and to free up space. If it just goes to another folder in my comp, whats the use of an online storage? Please correct me if I’m wrong. TY!

  34. Very interesting cloud storage .

  35. Seems pretty great so far compared to Dropbox. Can get 20GB right away which blows Dropbox out of the water and yet it functions much the same way. Still need to play around with it more.

    • Well so much for that. I’ve given up on Copy. Was taking days and days to upload something that only took 30 minutes in Google Drive or Dropbox. It will no longer even transfer one photo over now. Not interested anymore…

      • Thats strange, worked great for me, contact their support team, they are very helpful!

  36. I meant the shortcut feature from copy.com …

    • Hi Gnuut!

      I actually tested it last night and worked beautifully. I dragged and dropped a couple of shortcuts to the Copy.com folder and the destination has been synced, no problems at all.

      • Yes, seams to have been a strange bug on my side. Now it works flawlessly. Don’t know what happened.

        That shortcut feature is really great, but I’m not sure if it’s not just a nerdy work-around for the superior SugarSync “choose your own folders”-principle. You can do literately everything with it, like storage only, external drives, keep your own folder structure … But media streaming doesn’t work, right?

        And performance definitely went down since my last try. I just downloaded with 120 kb/s and upload wasn’t much better.

        Cloud is so complicated! There’s no all-great-service. There’s always something when you dig deeper.

        • Believe me, I am searching for the same, the perfect solution but they are all missing something…I will keep on searching and I am planning to open a storage exclusive section with objective non paid reviews if you are interested to participate contact me through the form so we can discuss.

          • It seems the Draggin shortcut into Copy.com folder works first time but if I add items into the folder of the short cut, it doesn’t sync anymore after the thid time…

  37. That shortcut doesn’t work anymore. I just tested it with the latest windows client and it doesn’t work at all 🙁

    • Try the solution below. Let’s assume you want to sync the C:\Docs folder…

      Don’t create a shortcut inside the Copy.com folder (as others have experienced, it may not be reliable in Windows). Instead, use a program like Link Shell Extension to create a symlink. Here’s the tricky part though: you need to keep the Docs folder inside the Copy.com folder and use that as the source for the symlink to C:\Docs (not the other way around). You just have to create the symlinks once, then it’s “set and forget” and you can continue to access your files in C:\Docs as you normally would.

      In fact, this is how I have my Dropbox set up, and it works like a charm — I never have to open up the Dropbox folder now.

      • For me Shortcuts never stopped working, but you have to be carefull if you have a shortcut inside that shortcuted folder you enter an endless loop and Copy wont stop uploading. Just make sure not having multiple shortcuts pointing to the same location inside the Copy folder.

  38. Your contact has nothing.

    • Thanks for letting me know. Now it has been activated again. Thanks!

  39. I can add: Their support is very fast and helpful. Even within the startup phase they answered within hours. I also like the shortcut feature and their pricing over Dropbox.

    What hinders me to use Copy.com as my primary cloud storage, is their implementation of bit-level sync. I often change meta data at files and don’t want to re-upload all files again. Dropbox and SugarSync do a very nice job of just uploading the bits that have changed. Copy has bit-level sync as well. But they split the file into 1 MB chunks and look what has changed. If you add bits to the metadata in the beginning of a file, all chunks have to be uploaded again. Dropbox and SugarSync don’t do that. I contacted the support who forwarded me to one dev who explained me the situation. He said, he finds it very interesting and is already discussing it with the team. Their idea is to handle different file types differently … But not now. He couldn’t give me any timeframe. However, if they implement bit-level sync that better fits my needs, I’m switching to Copy.

    Has anybody tested what happens to the synced files from a remote drive (via shortcut) when the remote drive is not available? I have checked that but forgot what I found out.

  40. Really interesting cloud services. Very easy company users sharing system. Still not working via proxy!

  41. I personally have been using Copy.com for a while now and I am totally hooked! They offer much better features than than most other cloud storage providers. Goodbye dropbox…

  42. I guess it would be best if you try it, just create a test folder and put some files on it, throw the shortcut to the copy folder and wait a couple of seconds and check its behaviour on the other PC. Let me know your conclusions

  43. Continuing our conversation from the AeroFS support thread (since it might get deleted, and is more on-topic here): I have the desktop app installed on my desktop and laptop, so that it syncs files to the cloud, but also to my other computer (AeroFS does the latter only). So I’m wondering if I create a shortcut to a folder I want to sync on my desktop, will it just create that folder inside the Copy folder on the laptop? Or will it create a similar shortcut and put the folder outside the Copy folder in the same (or relative) location on the laptop, as where it is on the desktop?

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