Securely Sync Files Between Multiple Computers with Unlimited Space Using BitTorrent Sync

When we speak of BitTorrent, we all think about BT downloads, don’t we? But do you know they actually also have a pretty cool product, called BitTorrent Sync, that lets you sync your files between multiple computers across different multiple platforms? And because it uses the P2P (peer-to-peer) distributed technology that is very similar to the version used by uTorrent and BitTorrent, there is no space limitation on how big the storage you will need to sync the files.

Installation

Download the installation file from the website and install it on the devices you want to set up the sync. During the installation, you have the option to run BitTorrent Sync as Windows service so it runs automatically in the background regardless of whether a user is logged in, which is particularly useful for server use.

BitTorrent Sync - installation option

The first thing you do after the installation is to choose a name to show when you send and receive folders. Choose the name carefully as this cannot be changed later. Also, check to agree on the terms and agreements and click Get started button.

BitTorrent Sync - choose a name

Sync folders

BitTorrent Sync allows you to sync as many folders as you want with files of any size. Click the down arrow icon next to Add Folder and pick one of 2 options to sync folders (3 options if you have a Pro account), either Standard folder or Encrypted folder that can be shared to read-only nodes to provide an offsite snapshot of your data without providing direct access.

Sync - 2016-01-24 12_20_38

If you want to know about how this new Encrypted folder option works, read more on this post.

To share the added folder to other devices, click Share button to find out the key or link for other devices to connect and copy the key you want to use.

BitTorrent Sync - share a folder

Choose the last option, Enter a key or link, if you are linking to a folder shared on another device and paste in the key or link you copied or obtained from that machine.

Sync - 2016-01-24 12_55_14

Once you have multiple devices connected, you can see a full list of them from the Devices tab in the program, which will give you an idea if there is an unauthorized device somehow sneaked in.

How secure this sync network is?

As it explains in its Technology page, all traffic between devices is encrypted with AES with 256-bit key created on the base of the secret, which is a random 21-bit key that is unique to every folder you put in your sync network. I think the use of the secret code is the key to putting BitTorrent Sync in a superb place above other File sync and sharing network in terms of security. It even gives you more flexibility to have your own longer key if you are not satisfied by the default 21-bit key.

Multiple platform support

BitTorrent Sync works on all platforms, including Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android, almost any platform or operating systems you can think of. Go to this link to access all the binaries for the platform you want to use.

Verdict

I am impressed. If you have a data storage that is too big to your Dropbox, OneDrive, Box, or Google Drive, BitTorrent Sync is your weapon to not only sync but also back up your file across multiple devices on multiple platforms. If you want to have your own private cloud this is the way to go.

Kent Chen

Microsoft MVP, IT Professional, Developer, Geek, and the co-founder of Next of Windows.

Last updated: 01/24/2016

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