CentreStack vs. Dropbox

What you should know and what you should ask when comparing CentreStack to Dropbox.

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Red Bull
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OGL Computer

"CentreStack’s ability to automatically inherit a system’s NTFS permissions dictating access control for files and folders is a key benefit. Anchor & DropBox cannot do this. CentreStack is truly enterprise level because of their file server enablement and their ability to mimic the NTFS permissions."

Nik Margulski


"Our clients were primarily using either Dropbox as their file sharing solution or emailing attachments to share files. We needed a solution where the data does not go to servers outside of Canada as Dropbox data does. CentreStack's greatest benefit is solving this problem while providing the ability to share files securely and access them anywhere with full control of data storage and support."

Lawrence Reiber

Tanda Technologies

"The primary competition is Dropbox, OneDrive or Sharepoint out of Office 365. But they don’t really match up to what CentreStack does. I think CentreStack is far superior because of all the capability of sharing and syncing while keeping your data private and secure."

Graham Mannassi

Mannassi IT Solutions

"CentreStack is familiar; the interface is easy to adapt to. Our clients can see all of their files as they typically access them. They are using cloud storage the way they typically stored files with their old file system. With CentreStack, we've added $24,000 a year in new gross profit!"

Aaron Patton

Tenacious Networks

"CentreStack customer service is really good. They use electronic ticketing, which is what we prefer. To be transparent, in the 3 years since we rolled out CentreStack, we have had very few issues, which speaks volumes to the quality of their solution. We also created $25,000 in new income!"

Jordan Ray

4D IT Solutions

"I wish we had done it sooner. It has been a fantastic product. For those that are worried about data in the cloud, just use CentreStack’s expertise and software to get your own servers set up."

Paul Burton

IT Administrator
Funk Companies

Using Dropbox at Work is a Bad idea

Many enterprise are now faced with the Dropbox problem. Employees use Dropbox on their own to backup some local folders and make them easy to access remotely from home, an airport or other locations. However, from a purely business perspective, it's difficult to secure company documents as they are scattered across multiple PCs and third party sites, creating compliance liabilities and increasing the risks of leaking confidential business documents.

Why CentreStack?

Data Privacy, security and control matter. Nobody knows this better than CentreStack. Backed by years of experience and industry awards, CentreStack provides a file server friendly collaboration platform that is focused on keeping your data private, secure and under your control. Perhaps more importantly, the user experience is simplified. This prevents the problematic temptation for users to subvert any security measures that are difficult to live with.

CentreStack is used by businesses and service providers to privately deploy and host a Dropbox-like on premise file sharing solution, while providing an access layer (browser, mobile, desktop and file server access) for local file servers and private cloud storage services. The platform does this while retaining full control of data and the related access infrastructure.


Guarantee data privacy. Keep data on-premises or in private clouds.


AD Users and NTFS permissions are automatically migrated for instant access while data is synchronized in the background.


Simplify file server access from mapped drives, mobile devices and web browsers.

Feature Highlights


You control and arrange where the data storage is for the file sharing solution


Centrally manage granular NTFS permissions and AD users with auditing and reporting for all activities.


Two levels of file locking combine with version controls to control distributed access.

Benefits after Replacing Dropbox

More privacy than Dropbox

Businesses can address data privacy concerns by using CentreStack as a Dropbox alternative that keeps data on-premises. Alternatively, Managed Service Providers may choose to deploy CentreStack in a private cloud like AWS or Azure.

Mobile Access to File Servers 

Dropbox requires that data gets copied to its own data centers. CentreStack provides the option to remotely access data on your existing file servers.

Simplified user experience

With Dropbox, the user experience changes based on data location, user location and device. For example, accessing a Dropbox account from a mobile device or browser is quite different from accessing file shares from a PC.

Reduce costs

Reduce bandwidth and storage consumption with synchronization on-demand. Automatically use existing users and permissions to save setup time and money. Reduce licensing and support costs.

Simpler centralized management 

Admins can easily lose control of their data once users start sharing it through their personal Dropbox accounts, not to mention the general challenges of managing data across file servers, Dropbox accounts, email and other file access or sharing mechanisms.

Centrally manage granular folder permissions 

For complete control and visibility, permissions can be managed from the file server that was their source, or natively with CentreStack.

Maintain Compliance

Easily keep track of where the data is, who has access and how it’s being shared. Admins can perform audits of GDPR and HIPAA compliance or keep track of any changes that have been made to individual files. Centrally manage users, access controls, and storage for each tenant.

Instant Migration

Users start working immediately after installation without waiting until the full synchronization is finished.

White labeled file sharing solution

CentreStack provides a white labeled platform that makes it easy for MSP partners to build a private cloud file server solution based on infrastructure from Amazon, Azure or Wasabi.

File Locking

CentreStack provides two levels of file locking and version controls to protect distributed access. Files are locked automatically when online and can be checked out when going offline.

Get the Facts

Critical questions to ask when evaluating CentreStack as an alternative to Dropbox. Make sure you consider these questions - and their answers - when it's decision time.

1. Where is my data and who owns it?

CentreStack provides complete control of the storage location to maximize data privacy. So, it's commonly used to guarantee data location and compliance, or maintain sovereignty; for example, by enterprises and hosting providers who want to keep data on-premises or in their country. Self-hosting also makes it easy to maintain existing compliance. For example, if you already have HIPAA compliant infrastructure, CentreStack provides a thin access layer to maintain that compliancy.

2. How much training and support will the solution require?

User training is minimized with CentreStack's use of things like mapped drives and file locking that feel familiar to users. For admins, assisted installation and onboarding are free with small commitments, or can be purchased for a small fee if a monthly subscription is preferred.

3. What kind of support will I get once I’m onboarded?

CentreStack customers rave about CentreStack's highly responsive support team. Meaningful engagement usually happens in less than an hour and fixes are usually available in a few days.

4. Can I use Active Directory and the NTFS Permission?

CentreStack focus on file server cloud enablement and has very well thought out integration with File servers, Active Directory, NTFS permission, mapped drive and file locking.

5. Why should I pay for CentreStack when Dropbox is free?

This is a common question for small businesses whose employees may elect to use the free version of Dropbox. It may be easy to ignore the hidden cost of the risks associated with less privacy, security and control, but it's hard to ignore the increased support costs. For a tiny team, this may not be noticeable, but as the team size grows, the challenges of managing data in multiple locations, and accessing that data with incompatible tool sets will become increasingly apparent.

6. What's the total cost of adoption or migration?

Another hidden cost that is often overlooked is the cost of moving data into a cloud service. It can take hours, days or even weeks to restructure data and redefine permissions. CentreStack is designed to seamlessly extends a Windows file server to the cloud, while providing drive mapping, file locking, on-demand file synchronization, and maintaining existing NTFS permissions and Active Directory identities. But this approach also makes it migration completely seamless. In other words, file structures, users and permissions can be automatically migrated with minimal effort and zero use disruption.

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