I have this pain with every single company.
We need a shared file system and given todays mobile employees, the shared file system needs to be accessible from anywhere, with permissioning. There are many solutions for this, mainly Sharepoint, Alfresco, and others. But they are all difficult to maintain. Each takes a server administrator which is a drain on company resources.
Additionally, once you have a shared file system, you had better spend a TON of time figuring out the structure of your file system or you’re going to go crazy trying to find anything. For instance, you have an NDA with a company. Where do you put that? Under folder/Legal? Under folder/client? Under folder/NDAs?
Lastly, the versioning aspect KILLS me. People will re-save a document with a new file name based on date, or who edited it, and then you have 20 versions floating around which makes it hard to find quickly and takes up hard disk space.
I’m looking for a hosted (or on-site for those who hate hosted) document sharing site that will give you persmissions, use ‘labels’ instead of folders, and will easily do versioning. Also, it needs to hook into Windows Explorer or any folder explorer so you can see the folders there just like you can on your own hard drive.
Google (why haven’t they paid me yet for evangelism?) utilizes Google Docs – and for the most part this is a great solution. Except that it is impossible to navigate if you have hundreds of folders and tens of thousands of docs. But it does an AMAZING job with versioning, labels, collaboration (multiple people in a doc at the same time, COOL!) and a mediocre job at permissions.
If any developer wants to start this business, let me know. I’m convinced this would sell better than porn. Imagine the uses, both business and personal. Hard disc space shrinks to nothing since you’ll have all your docs in the cloud, but accessible like they’re local. Backups would be included of course, so you don’t lose your docs. Collaboration becomes a snap. Finding docs is a snap.
I’m not kidding by the way. If you’re a developer and you want to go down this path, post your comment. I’ll start the company with you.