When it comes to enterprise file sharing and sync, there are few services that hit the mark quite like Egnyte. From small businesses to enterprise-scale needs, Egnyte is our go-to business recommendation for nearly everyone. It topped our list of the best business cloud storage and ranked high in our best EFSS guide. In this Egnyte review, we’re going to explain why.
It’s hard to go wrong with Egnyte, but as we’ll explore in this review, the service has a few downsides. Pricing and storage space could be better, and the support is strangely distributed. Thankfully, those issues look minor when compared to how much Egnyte has to offer, from its unmatched speed to its excellent usability.
Strengths & Weaknesses
- Easy to use with deep user management
- Highly secure
- G Suite & Microsoft Office support
- Built-in task management app
- Customizable security policy
- Excellent self-support resources
- A little expensive
- Not much storage space
- Confusing support structure
When it comes to features, it’s hard to start anywhere other than integrations. Egnyte’s long list of supported applications makes it less of a cloud storage service and more of a hub for your business operations.
Native support for Microsoft Office and G Suite — it’s rare to find the two together — takes point here, allowing you to edit and collaborate on documents all within the same app. Office and G Suite — along with Slack, DocuSign and Autodesk Forge, to name a few — are known as “add-ons,” meaning you can take actions with them directly in the Egnyte cloud web application.
Then there are “external integrations.” This list includes Zoom, Trello, Amazon Web Services SSO and much more. Instead of offering actions inside Egnyte, these third-party integrations hook up externally in some form with the Egnyte drive app. For example, you can use the Gmail integration to send files to and receive files from your file server.
For task management, Egnyte is surprisingly light, forgoing services like Monday.com in favor of an external integration for Trello. Egnyte provides its own task management tool, though. It’s basic, but you can attach tasks to files and folders in your account and quickly view them in the web application.
Egnyte Connect Features Overview
- Device synchronization
- Selective sync
- Block-level sync
- Shared Folders
- File linking
- File versioning
- 50 GB Max file size
- Microsoft Office Integration
- Google Docs Integration
- Third-party app integration library
- Monitor user activity
- Set user roles
- Create user groups
- AES-256 At-rest encryption
- In-transit encryption
- End-to-end encryption integration
- Two-factor authentication
- Custom password requirements
- Single-sign on (SSO) integration
- Remote device wipe
- Live Chat
- Telephone support
- User forum
- 24/7 support
Egnyte’s pricing has undergone an overhaul, trimming the fat on its product lineup to three distinct plans. Those plans don’t step on each other’s toes too much, which is good. However, in the process of trimming, Egnyte cut some storage space, too. That leaves some of the higher-end Egnyte plans with the same high price tag but less file storage.
How Much Does Egnyte Cost?
Although a far cry from Tresorit’s steep pricing — read our Tresorit review for more — Egnyte isn’t cheap. The most inexpensive plan, Team, clocks in at $10 per user per month with 1TB of shared storage. The Business plan is twice the price at $20 per user per month, and it comes with the same 1TB of shared storage (plus an additional 10GB per employee).
The Enterprise plan rounds out the list with 50GB of storage per employee per month, without the 1TB seen with Team and Business (this plan is offered through contact only). We’ve seen better prices — read our Sync.com Business review for that — but Egnyte isn’t too expensive. The problem is how it distributes storage space.
Unlike most enterprise-focused cloud storage services, Egnyte has some pretty strict user requirements. Team is for one to 10 employees, Business is for 10 to 100 employees, and Enterprise is for teams of 50 or more.
For the Business plan, in particular, the storage space doesn’t make sense. Sure, every employee brings an extra 10GB of space, but that means a Business subscription has, at most, access to 2TB of storage.
By comparison, Box offers unlimited storage for $17.30 per user per month (read our Box review). Even Dropbox Business has an unlimited storage option for around $20 per user per month. For more information on how Egnyte compares to Dropbox, check out our Egnyte vs Dropbox comparison.
You can outfit your account with more storage. The problem is that, unlike some competing services, you have to buy that storage a la carte. The Egnyte price is all right, especially if you don’t need too much storage space. However, there are other options that provide more storage for less money.
Thankfully, you don’t need to put any money down to try Egnyte. The service comes with a 15-day free trial across all plans. Even better, you don’t need to put down a credit card to start the trial.
Ease of Use
Whenever you sign up for an account, Egnyte creates a server for you and your business. For the end user, the server doesn’t really make a difference. You can still access your files through the web application, desktop application or one of the mobile apps, and all of your files are automatically synced across them.
Egnyte points out that it’s a “server” you’re accessing, and this is where the service starts to deviate from others. Simply put, Egnyte gives you an unprecedented amount of control over your storage and account. What’s more, it manages to do so in an interface that feels functional and familiar.
Egnyte User Interface and Functionality
Although we tested every version of Egnyte — and we’ll touch on our experience with all of them — we mainly used the web application. The web app is simple, with a folder hierarchy taking up most of the screen, stopping short of a left-side navigation menu.
The biggest change compared to the big three — Google Drive, OneDrive and Dropbox — is an activity log that populates on the right side of the screen whenever you open a folder.
Any basic tasks you’d want to perform — sharing, creating new folders, etc. — is within a click or two, the same as most competing services. This is where most cloud storages end their user experience. For Egnyte, this is where the service starts.
Using the top bar, you can tab over to other pages and view all of your active links for any files you’ve shared, as well as your tasks. As mentioned, Egnyte’s task management feature isn’t as robust as, say, Asana. However, it’s still nice — and convenient — to have around.
The hamburger menu next to these tabs — three horizontal lines — further expands the functionality of the web app. There, you’ll find Egnyte’s supported apps, as well as the settings screen.
The settings screen is where Egnyte comes into its own. We can’t discuss everything here, but the short of it is that if there’s a setting you want, Egnyte probably has it.
The settings screen has everything from managing your users to generating on-the-fly reports to adding custom metadata to your files. In this same area, you can also set your company-wide security policy, enforcing password requirements, password update intervals and trusted networks.
There are also some small quality of life features in the web app, our favorite of which is WebEdit. Instead of tracking down a file you want to edit locally, you can select it in the web application and automatically open it in its native app.
The local application doesn’t have nearly as much functionality, but that’s a good thing. Instead of just creating a folder on your computer, Egnyte configures a network storage device, ensuring that your hard drive doesn’t need to bear the weight of all of the data stored in your account.
You can manage a few settings with the local app, including setting a bandwidth limit and configuring a proxy. However, it’s mostly focused on syncing.
Thankfully, that’s easy to do. Once you install the Egnyte app — and restart your computer — you can easily sync and share files by right-clicking on them in File Explorer. Egnyte makes everything simple, which is all the more impressive considering how much the design team managed to cram into the web application.
Egnyte’s design shows a mature approach that’s optimized for functionality. Unlike Tresorit, it never gets in its own way, delivering on the promises of its many features while still offering an accessible user interface.
File Sharing & Syncing
Like other areas of Egnyte, file sharing and syncing is what we’ve come to expect from other cloud storage services, just with a little more. Starting with syncing, files you upload are immediately synced across your devices, and as mentioned, those synced files don’t take up space on your computer (unless you’re the one who uploaded them).
In addition to a collaborative space, Egnyte includes private spaces for each user, and admins can set up other folders for groups of users.
Storage sync is where Egnyte goes beyond other services. With this feature, you can sync any local storage you have to Egnyte. Storage sync allows your business to, say, immediately share your company resources with a remote worker without some sort of virtual private network setup.
Document Sharing and Collaboration
For sharing files, Egnyte includes the standard fare of link sharing, file requests and internal sharing. Admins can also customize what other users are allowed to do when it comes to sharing. That includes what files and folders they can share, of course, but also what types of links they can generate and some specific parameters for those links.
Real-time document collaboration is possible with Microsoft Office integration, and with WebEdit, it’s easy for multiple users to track down the same file within Egnyte. Egnyte has G Suite integration, too, so if you prefer Google’s productivity tools, Egnyte has you covered.
It’s important to note that these integrations are classified as “add-ons” (as we mentioned in the “features” section). The Egnyte software provides powerful integrations, yes, but more importantly, it provides them directly in the application, making sharing and collaboration a breeze.
To test Egnyte’s speed, we uploaded and downloaded a 1GB test folder filled with a variety of file types. After doing that twice, we averaged the results. Before running the tests, we noted our connection speed at around 450 Mbps download and 21 Mbps upload on a wired connection.
|First Attempt:||Second Attempt:||Average:|
Given these numbers, we’d expect an upload time of around six minutes and 49 seconds and a download time of around 19 seconds. Of course, it’s impossible to account for changes in speed and other networking conditions, so take our numbers as ballpark figures. Our upload numbers actually showcase some of those changes.
We’d expect our folder to upload in just shy of seven minutes, but Egnyte managed to get the file online in closer to six minutes and 30 seconds. Egnyte doesn’t have some sort of mystical uploader or anything; networking conditions change constantly. What we can gather from our numbers is that Egnyte never puts a second to waste.
Upload times are, from our testing, as fast as they can possibly be. Egnyte, as an enterprise-focused service, still manages to beat out the fastest personal cloud storage providers on the market, namely Google Drive and Icedrive (read our Google Drive review and Icedrive review).
Download times aren’t as impressive, but when we’re dealing with a difference of around 10 seconds from our expected time, it’s hard to complain. Your results will vary based on your speed. However, our testing shows that Egnyte doesn’t add much — if any — overhead to file uploads and downloads. That alone is worth a recommendation.
Security & Privacy
Egnyte is closer to OneDrive for Business than it is to pCloud Business when it comes to security (read our OneDrive for Business review and pCloud Business review). That is to say: Egnyte doesn’t offer zero-knowledge encryption. That’s not inherently a bad thing; in fact, most businesses are better off with a slightly less secure, more feature-rich service.
Frankly, Egnyte’s long list of integrations wouldn’t be possible with a zero-knowledge model, and for most businesses, the integrations matter more. That doesn’t mean Egnyte is down and out, or that it’s somehow unsecure. In fact, Egnyte is one of the most secure cloud storage services we’ve tested.
Whenever you upload data, it’s passed over an SSL/TLS layer, encrypting that data with AES-256 bit (read our description of encryption). At rest, Egnyte employs AES-256 bit again, securing your data inside one of many physically secure servers. It’s important to note that at-rest encryption happens server-side, not client-side, like Woelkli (read our Woelkli review).
Egnyte, by default, manages the encryption keys. If you’re subscribed to the Enterprise plan, though, you can handle key management on your own with Egnyte Key Management. If there’s some data you’d rather encrypt client-side — meaning it’s encrypted before leaving your computer — you can encrypt your own data beforehand with a service like Boxcryptor.
As for privacy, Egnyte isn’t anything special. It collects and processes personal information when you sign up for an account, and uses that information to comply with law enforcement requests and to issue support. This is standard fare for most enterprise data storage solutions, though you should be aware that Egnyte stores data in either a U.S. or European data center, depending on your locality (each country has its own privacy laws).
Egnyte could access your data; it manages the encryption keys, after all. However, it probably doesn’t, and if you’re really concerned, you can always encrypt your data with Boxcryptor first.
Egnyte’s customer support is excellent, but it’s more confusing than it has any right to be. There are three support tiers: Standard, Premium and Platinum. The Team and Business plans include Standard support, while Enterprise includes Platinum support. The middle tier, Premium, is available for an extra fee on Business plans, but not available as an upgrade on the Team plan.
On top of that, Team and Business subscribers can’t upgrade to Platinum support at all. Although we understand breaking up customer support tiers for different sized businesses, Egnyte’s system just doesn’t make sense. The Premium tier, for example, isn’t available as the default support option on any of the three subscriptions. It’s only available as an upgrade on the Business plan.
With that out of the way, let’s talk about the tiers themselves. Standard customer support is, well, standard. It includes 24/7 access to online case submissions, the knowledgebase and user guides. There’s also a live chat button on Egnyte’s site, and although it’s mainly used for sales, you can request technical support there, too.
Up the ladder, Premium support adds around-the-clock phone support, as well as a kick-off meeting with your administrators. Platinum support is basically the same, just with priority responses on online and phone issues, as well as early notifications of new product launches. It’s a bit strange considering that last one a feature.
The support itself is excellent. Egnyte got back to our case submission within a few hours during a business day. The self-help resources are even more impressive. The knowledgebase feels like a manual for some high-tech gadget, with articles on nearly every topic, all filled to the brim with detail.
The “user guides” are an understated feature, too. Egnyte University offers nearly 70 video tutorials for end users, almost 50 for admins and seven hour-long webinars. Egnyte Connect is a cloud storage company focused on your business’ success, and the support resources showcase that.
Egnyte Business is a cloud storage service for any business. It knows that, too. For the storage space, Egnyte is expensive, but it’s easy to look past the price considering how much else Egnyte has to offer. From speed to security to usability to features, Egnyte hits or exceeds the marks left by its competitors.
What do you think, though? Are you going to sign up for a free trial? Let us know in the comments below and, as always, thanks for reading.
What Is Egnyte Used For?
Egnyte is an enterprise file sharing and syncing service. It’s used to share files across businesses and collaborate with others. Additionally, it offers a range of integrations, allowing users to use Egnyte as a hub for various business activities.
Is Egnyte Secure?
Yes, Egnyte is secure. By employing industry-leading AES-256 bit encryption for data in transit and at rest, Egnyte protects your files at every point in the network chain. It doesn’t provide a zero-knowledge encryption model, but with services like Boxcryptor, you can always encrypt your own files before uploading them to Egnyte.