As a frequent business traveler, I typically maintain at least two versions of my critical data: the primary version, which is at home on one of my servers, and the version I cart around with me on a laptop computer. But laptops don't have massive hard disks—the largest hard disk you can get today is 100GB, whereas my primary server has more than 1TB (about 1000GB) of data storage. That means I can't travel with a complete set of my data, which also means I frequently find myself needing something I don't have when I'm on the road.
I used to make a set of backup DVDs every time I traveled. The DVDs contained my most critical files and were a safety net in the event of a disaster. However, on a few trips, I found myself calling home and asking my wife to upload or send me certain files I'd overlooked. And DVDs are a lousy solution: They take a long time to make, and 4.7GB of space just isn't adequate.
To fix this problem, I began looking into solutions that would let me securely access my PC-based home server while I was on the road. I ended up selecting the LogMeIn service, which comes in a variety of versions. The free version of LogMeIn lets you use a Web-based interface to remotely access your PC just as if you were sitting in front of it. It's handy if you need to access certain files. You can email them to yourself from your home computer, or FTP them if you have access to such a site.
If you need more capabilities, however, LogMeIn Pro provides several unique features. Its key benefit is a File Manager application that lets you transfer files directly from your home-based PC to your current PC, wherever you happen to be. I've used the feature this summer to access my home server from various locations, and I'll likely need it during an upcoming trip to Los Angeles. LogMeIn Pro costs $99 a year, and I think it's worth every cent; it has little trouble navigating firewalls and has excellent security. And if you're looking for a great remote-file-access solution for a home or home office, I can't think of a better solution. I highly recommend it.