A comparison between Microsoft OneDrive and Amazon WorkDocs
Global accessibility and high availability
Multi factor authentication (MFA)
Easiness in getting started
IP based access restriction in OneDrive
OneDrive enhanced security features
Activity feed and advanced AWS CloudTrail logging
Amazon WorkDocs and OneDrive for Business are two of the most famous cloud based file storage systems today. OneDrive was released in 2007 and is the one of oldest competitors in market. Amazon WorkDocs was released back in 2014, initially known as Amazon Zocalo. Both services offer high performance, security, durability and a wide range of features.
Let's dive into a more detailed comparison on some of the core features in both products.
1. Global accessibility and high availaibility
Both OneDrive and WorkDocs globally accessible. Both have a web based administrative and client portal that allow end users to execute all administrative and operational tasks. To provide ease of access, both offer applications for desktop, mobile phones and tablets. These applications allow users to upload, delete, share, comment and perform other file and folder level operations. File versioning is also offered by both products.
It is not optimal to download and upload files each time they are modified. This issue becomes more alarming when the file size is large. Both WorkDocs and OneDrive offer synchronization service which can be used using sync clients on your computer. Selected files and folders are automatically synced based on your configuration. When you modify files or folders in your local sync folder, the changes are automatically synced with online central storage, and are immediately reflected on the web clients and any additional computers where you have configured additional sync client.
SDKs are available from both the products in almost all the top programming languages. Using these SDKs, programmers can easily automate repetitive and lengthy tasks for themselves and for other staff members.
4. Online Editing
Both products enable users to edit Microsoft Office files like word or excel on the go. You can simply open documents in the browser, make changes and all changes will be saved automatically.
1. Multi factor authentication
With WorkDocs you can implement MFA only when you have connected your local Active Directory with WorkDocs which will handle user authentication. For integrating your local AD with WorkDocs you have to:
Use the option AD connector directory when setting up WorkDocs.
Setup a RADIUS server and enter its configuration details in the WorkDocs MFA setup
Enabling MFA in OneDrive is relatively easy, You can make settings in the administrative panel of OneDrive for each user to enable or disable MFA. Users can use their mobile phone, emails or authenticator app to receive a security code as a second factor of authentication
2. Easiness in getting started
With WorkDocs it is very easy for you to invite a user irrespective of user’s email address, domain or any other details. The only information required to add a user in WorkDocs is his/her email address. The users can get started with using WorkDocs in few simple steps without having to sign-up to AWS.
As OneDrive is a part of Office 365 package therefore every user that you add in OneDrive is actually subscribed for Microsoft Office 365 and is also assigned the default applications. Also you need to have the domains added in the office 365 in order to add users associated to that domain into your OneDrive
3. IP based restriction in OneDrive
You can prevent users from accessing OneDrive content on devices outside of specific domains, and prevent them from accessing files in apps that don't check for device status. This can be done by specifying allowed IP addresses in the security settings of admin panel.
4. OneDrive enhanced security features
Office 365 Business Plan 2 provides some additional features for enhanced security. This includes the following
Data Loss Prevention: After you have make proper files security settings you can go a step further and avoid accidental sharing of your highly sensitive files.
E-Discovery: Search for keywords and sensitive information across all files owned by all users of your organization
5. Activity log and advanced AWS CloudTrail logging
Amazon Workdocs provides a separate panel where user can review all of its activities on Workdocs. This feature is very helpful for people that extensively use WorkDocs as it keeps track of every file upload, rename, delete and all other activities. Administrator users can see activities of all users across the WorkDocs.
Using AWS CloudTrail you can capture complete information about the API calls made to Amazon WorkDocs. With CloudTrail, you can determine what request was made to Amazon WorkDocs, the source IP address from which the request was made, who made the request, when it was made, and so on
This can help you keep track of every administrative action performed by any root or IAM user.
Depending on your business requirements anyone of these products can be the choice for your storage and collaboration needs. Generally WorkDocs is considered to be more simplistic in terms of usage and administration and at the same time also provides security, high performance, durability and many attractive features. Other than the basic features like WorkDrive, OneDrive has the option to enable “Data Loss Prevention” which makes it ideal choice in the case where you do not want your files to be shared externally even by mistake.
So, although both OneDrive and WorkDocs provides same service and has a number of common features, which one of them is the better option would depend on the careful analysis of both products done in the light of your business needs.
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