4Sync is another cloud file syncing and sharing solutions that supports multiple platforms including Windows, Linux, Mac, and Smartphones like iPhone and Android. It works pretty much the same way as Dropbox, the most popular file sharing solution on the market. You save or make a change to a file stored in 4Sync folder on one computer, and that change gets sync’d instantaneously to your another devices that run 4Sync, whether it’s a Linux desktop, or a Mac, or even a smartphone in your pocket.
It creates a folder called 4Sync in your profile folder once the program is installed. A shortcut will be automatically added into your Favorites in Windows Explorer if you are on a Windows 7 computer. Files or folders dragged and dropped into are automatically uploaded to 4Sync online storage and will get sync’d to other devices that runs 4Sync under your credential right after. All saving, uploading, and syncing are automated. You don’t have to worry about any of those. All you need to do is just to dump the files there and let 4Sync to take care of the rest.
I particularly like its Copy to 4Sync command in the context menu. It makes the saving to 4Sync folder a lot easier. When you are in a particular folder and want to copy some of the files or folders under that folder into 4Sync folder, simply highlight them, right click and go to Copy to 4Sync.
I also quite like it sync history feature that provides you a whole list of sync activities happened in your account. There is also a Recycle Bin on your web console that stores any files you deleted from your 4Sync folder, which adds another level of protection to prevent from loosing files due to the accidental deletion.
The 4Sync iPhone app is also fairly intuitive. Sign in, and you get to see all the files in your 4Sync account right on your phone. You can read, preview, or upload the pictures with the app. Compare to Dropbox iPhone app, it misses a few key features, e.g. Pass Key to protect unauthorized use, favorite documents to save the bandwidth, and limit the local storage space. But still, it’s a good enough keeping the files with you in your pocket.
4Sync offers 15G free space right from the time you sign up. It doesn’t have a referral program that rewards you extra space for any referrals but having a 15G of free space to start with is already a very attractive point to lure a lot of users.
4Sync is part of 4Shared, a popular file sharing website. So all your files sync’d with 4Sync application are actually stored on 4Shared servers. Because of these, every single file is accessible directly from the website with an unique url. You can right click the file in your 4Sync folder, and to get the url from there. Not really sure if that’s the kind of practice for everyone. But to me, I like how it does in Dropbox better, in which only files stored in Public folder have the external link associated.
Other than a good recycle bin feature and backup service running behind the scene, there are not much more features added to protect your files, especially the privacy. Neither Dropbox nor 4Sync offered a comprehensive way to encrypt the data saved on their servers for best protection. But that’s the reality of using any of the cloud solution on the market. You will need a 3rd party solution added on top to provide a good encryption protection.
I actually will be using it as my 2nd cloud option for backing up my not-so-important but big files. And I will be using it for sharing big files to my friends as well when needed.