What are the Differences Between On-Premise, Hybrid and Online File Sharing

June 20, 2019

There is no best option when selecting how to manage data in your organization. As you can see, each option has its advantages and disadvantages. The method to choose depends on your needs

File sharing is vital for every organization. In the digital age, there are different options open to organizations - on-premise file sharing, online or cloud file sharing, and hybrid file sharing. The question is which of these options is most advantageous for your organization.


As you can probably deduce from its name, on-premise file sharing involves hosting files on an organization's IT infrastructure. This method of file sharing was very popular before the advent of cloud computing, and it is still widely used today.

With on-premise file sharing, apps and files are shared between computers through the local area network (LAN). Your IT team takes full responsibility for the network's security as well as its performance. On-premise file sharing is quite straightforward. Some companies choose this option because of the sensitive nature of the information that they deal with, for example, financial firms. While on-premise file hosting and sharing can be safe, it is not entirely immune to risks. This is why it is essential to use the latest security protocols including encryption as well as antivirus and anti-ransomware protection.

Advantages of On-Premise File Hosting and Sharing

  1. You have complete control over your data without leaving it in the hands of a third-party.
  2. File sharing is faster and does not depend on an internet connection.
  3. Some apps work better on-premise than over the cloud.
  4. On-premise file hosting and sharing provide a lot of customization options.
  5. If your server is not connected to the internet, the chances of a data breach are drastically reduced.
  6. On-premise file storage and sharing make it easier to fulfill regulatory requirements in some sectors.

Disadvantages of On-Premise File Hosting and Sharing

  1. It can be expensive to get the necessary equipment to create a data center, which is why this is not the best option for some startups. Also, you have to maintain an IT team and need physical space for your data center, which adds up to more cost.
  2. On-premise file hosting and sharing make you more vulnerable to data loss if something happens to your data center.

Online File Sharing

Online file sharing is the trend today. Chances are that you are depending on cloud storage one way or another. Cloud file sharing involves hosting and sharing your files on a remote server. You can easily access your data through any device connected to the internet.

Online file sharing is a relatively inexpensive option as the duty of securing and managing the IT infrastructure is in the hands of your cloud service provider. There are many cloud platforms available today. Despite recent security incidents, cloud storage can be very safe if the proper security measures are deployed. For example, data must be encrypted while in storage and during transfer. It should be noted that cloud file sharing is not only limited to documents but also applications. You can access an application over the cloud without having to install it on your device.

Advantages of Online File Hosting and Sharing

  1. It makes your work more flexible. With online file hosting and storage, you can work remotely and hire people from different parts of the world.
  2. It is not costly to set up and operate. You do not have to maintain a large IT department or spend on equipment for an in-house data center.
  3. You can access your data using any device.
  4. Cloud platforms can be challenging to hack.
  5. You can easily backup data.

Disadvantages of Online File Hosting and Sharing

  1. If you do not choose a cloud platform that prioritizes on security, your data may be at risk.
  2. You need an internet connection to access your data.

Hybrid File Sharing

Hybrid file sharing combines features of on-premise and online file sharing. This means you'd still maintain your in-house IT infrastructure. However, you also use cloud storage. This may seem redundant, but there are many advantages of hybrid file storage and sharing. For example, with cloud sharing, your workers operating remotely can easily access files.

On the other hand, workers operating within your office premises can send and receive files faster using LAN connection. The cloud platform could also serve as a backup for your data. Alternatively, you can choose to store sensitive data on-premises and other files on the cloud.

Essentially, hybrid file sharing gives you the best of both worlds. This option is usually reserved for large organizations who have the necessary resources.

Advantages of Hybrid File Hosting and Sharing

  1. It improves flexibility in organizations, which translates to better efficiency.
  2. It provides guaranteed protection against data loss.
  3. Hybrid file sharing gives you more options to manage the security of your files.

Disadvantages of Hybrid File Hosting and Sharing

  1. It is a costly option. The cost of setting up and maintaining an in-house data center as well as a cloud storage account can be enormous for some organizations.

Which Option is Best?

There is no best option when selecting how to manage data in your organization. As you can see, each option has its advantages and disadvantages. The method to choose depends on your needs. Some organizations may be best suited for on-premises file sharing, while others may do best with cloud sharing or hybrid cloud sharing. The first step to determine which option to choose is to consult an IT expert to carry out an assessment of your organization's data management needs.

On the surface, hybrid file sharing may be the best option. Most modern organizations tend to go for hybrid file sharing because it makes it easier to hire offshore experts in addition to all the other benefits it provides. However, the cost involved makes this unsuitable for small startups.

Whether you choose on-premise, hybrid or online file sharing, FileCloud is the best partner to help you make the most of your data management system. We provide support all the way - from implementation to usage. This includes encryption, two-factor authentication, data loss prevention, and much more.

Author : Rahul Sharma

By Team FileCloud