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Supersize your free cloud storage to 100GB or more

Ian Paul | May 6, 2013
Just a few short years ago, cloud storage services that synced files and folders across multiple PCs and mobile devices were just a dream. But thanks to the rapid rise of entities like Dropbox, SugarSync, and Google Drive, cloud storage and syncing services are nearly ubiquitous today, acting as hard drives in the sky that help you do all kinds of things--such as creating a bulletproof (almost) backup system or turbocharging your productivity to blistering new levels--no matter where you are.

Just like that, your supercloud has mushroomed to an impressive 103GB. Now let's look at some ways to get even more storage.

Refer your friends to get more storage

Several cloud services offer extra storage in 500MB increments for every friend that you refer to it, but the maximum amount of free storage they permit under these bounty programs varies. Dropbox lets you add up to 16GB via referrals, while Ubuntu One tops out at 20GB of extra space, and SugarSync allows up to 32GB of additional storage in half-gig chunks. Note that Dropbox requires each referred user to join Dropbox, install the service's desktop app, and sign in to the desktop app after installation.

MiMedia offers you an additional 1GB of storage for every five friends you sign up, with a ceiling of 5GB of extra space from such referrals.

SpiderOak and MediaFire are a bit more generous, offering 1GB of additional free storage for each referral, to a maximum of 10GB and 32GB, respectively.

Beyond referrals

An easier way to increase the amount of free Dropbox storage available to you is to install the Dropbox app for Android or iOS, and then authorize automatic photo uploads from your device. Once authorized, the Dropbox mobile app will automatically begin uploading all photos snapped on your device to Dropbox. Dropbox doles out an extra, permanent 500MB to your account, as you need it, until you reach 3GB worth of free picture-driven storage.

Dropbox also presents you with 250MB of free space for completing its Getting Started tutorial.

SugarSync gives users a few ways to acquire extra free storage in 125MB chunks: You can install the mobile app for Android, BlackBerry, or iOS; or share a file or folder with a public link, or a folder with a private link; or upload a file to your account via email.

MediaFire rewards you with 2GB for installing the MediaFire desktop, and 2GB more for installing mobile apps. Connecting your Facebook and Twitter accounts to MediaFire fetches you another 1GB each. And if you spam your social networks about MediaFire, you receive another 1GB of storage.

Box doesn't have a referral program, but the company often offers 50GB of free storage to new users. Following the company on Facebook is a good way to find out quickly when the next 50GB giveaway is about to happen.

Both Google Drive and Microsoft offer free storage as an add-on when you make certain purchases. If you buy selected Chrome OS devices, Google will dole out either 1TB or 100GB of extra free Google Drive storage space for a limited time. Google maintains a list of Chromebook storage deals here. Microsoft offers an additional 20GB of SkyDrive storage to Office 365 Home Premium subscribers. Annual subscriptions to the Office suite cost $100 per year.


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