Want to make sure your photos, music, and other data stored on your computer are safe even if something happens to your PC? Then it’s a good idea to either back everything up to another device manually or automatically. And it’s an even better idea to have an off-site backup in case it’s not just your PC that’s damaged or stolen… but everything in your house.
So after accidentally losing all the data on the hard drive of my wife’s laptop during a botched OS upgrade years ago, I signed up for Carbonite.
But a few years back I switched to CrashPlan, because we’ve got a lot of computers to back up in our home and CrashPlan had some stellar deals on family plans that gave you unlimited cloud storage for backups from multiple PCs.
Now it looks like I need to do some comparison shopping again though… because CrashPlan is pivoting from a home & business solution to a company that caters on small business and enterprise customers. Over the next 14 months, CrashPlan says it’ll be “exiting the consumer market.”
Home customers can keep using the service through October 22nd, 2018… which is good for me, since I’m already paid up for the next 5 months… and CrashPlan is giving current customers an extra 60 days of service for no additional charge.
But rather than renew my subscription, it looks like I’ll need to switch to another service if I want to ensure that I’ve got an automatically updated, off-site backups of all of our household’s personal and business-related data.
CrashPlan recommends Carbonite… which is a pretty good deal for single-computer plans. But Carbonite’s multi-PC plans are much more expensive than CrashPlan’s had been.
That’s one of the reasons CrashPlan for Home had been The Wirecutter’s pick for “best online cloud backup service” until today.
So… while I go compare Acronis True Image, BackBlaze, Carbonite, and Mozy‘s plans, now seems like a good time to ask y’all: do you use an off-site backup service? What’s your favorite, and why do you like it?
I have Jungledisk and Crashplan…I got JD when it was a bit cheaper, because of ease of use…it became more expensive, and I was about to dump it altogether and just use crashplan…I may switch to the buisness version of crashplan…haven’t decided yet.
Thanks for the info Brad. I’ve tried a few services like OneDrive and Carbonite. Not big fans of them. I’ve started using Zoolz Intelligent. Will see how it goes. There is so many services out there! Guess it depends on the user.
I’m surprised no one has mentioned Acronis in the comments. It used to be very popular, and it is very flexible. But it is probably a bit on the pricey side.
I quit paying the high fees for cloud backup and bought a 2gb external ssd drive that backs up all the computers on my home network.
Sorry, that s a 2 TB drive
Been using Backblaze for a few years now on all our computers. $5/month/computer is well worth it for me.
Do you really need to backup your home computer anymore?
I didn’t renew my Carbonite coverage after I installed a new PC and realized that I didn’t need to restore anything from my backup.
Documents were all held in one or another Cloud directory.
Applications were all installed from the Web, or a vendor store (such as Steam, Origins, Microsoft, etc.)
I restored my music library by copying locally, but all of it was available via Google Music.
Basically, my local hard drives had become a giant convenient cache.
Yes, it took time to restore things, but my local DSL line was the main bottleneck. It didn’t matter where I was reestoring things from.
yes, we do.
I have 5TB of data on my machine synched to crashplan. Getting back one file from several months past and unlimited storage has been without doubt the best thing to save me on at least two rebuilds and recovery of files corrupt at some point unknown.
I left Backblaze because (like dropbox) any deleted files are removed after 30 days and switched to crashplan because I have multiple computers. Carbonite isn’t great for multiple computers (or even desktops with multiple drives).
I don’t understand all these “personal” backup plans that top out at 1-2 TB. They sell 10 TB hard drives these days. And all the “unlimited” plans limit you to 1 computer or 1 drive or restrict your files in some other way.
I have a desktop with multiple drives and a couple of laptops – I’m not a small business that can pay $200+/month. -sigh-
idrive at least offers 5 TB for unlimited devices. I’ll have to look at spideroak.
All my favorite podcasts recommend (read: have a sponsoring relationship with) Backblaze. It might worth checking out, though.
Don’t bother with Backblaze – If you delete a file (even by accident) it will get deleted from your cloud after 30 days. I used them in the last 6 months and I’m currently looking for an alternative.
“Backblaze will keep versions of a file that changes for up to 30 days. However, Backblaze is not designed as an additional storage system when you run out of space. Backblaze mirrors your drive. If you delete your data, it will be deleted from Backblaze after 30 days.”
I bought 8TB disc and put it in the Bank. Every 1/2 year I update.
Some important stuff I just burn on DVD and do the same.
Disappointed but I for one have 10 different machines on my family plan. They ain’t making money on me. I have used SpiderOak before and it worked well. Brad, please let us know what you settle on.
Yeah, I’m leaning toward them right now because the tight focus on security, support for unlimited devices, Linux support (which I don’t really need right now, but might in the future), and ability to support an NAS as long as its linked to a PC.
Our old HTPC has largely become a sort of DIY NAS since we started using an Amazon Fire TV Stick for most of our media consumption. I might eventually switch to an actual NAS for better on-site backups and lower power consumption. So the ability to backup that NAS would be nice, even if it’s only sorta/kinda supported by Spideroak.
It is worth thinking about using a NAS or server located at work or a friends if you have plenty of bandwidth. The initial cost is higher but you have full control.
As a secondary backup, if your hosting package has unlimited web space, you can ftp critical files there. There are backup apps which do this but last time I looked they weren’t great.
Mylio is also dropping their cloud backup, but still have the functionality that allows your photos to be synchronized between computers and external drives. They did add an option to backup to Google Drive or Amazon.
BTW, the external drives include NAS drives.
My biggest issue with most alternatives is linux support. I haven’t found a decently priced alternative that has unlimited storage with support for linux.
I’ve used CrashPlan Enterprise at a small business, after migrating away from JungleDisk, and I really like it, although since it’s exclusively a file-level backup it’s not really a suitable primary backup.
It’s great for restoring old, old versions of documents or data files, but if your backup involves SQL databases or virtual machine snapshots CrashPlan isn’t the right tool.
For home environments, CrashPlan has been perfect. I’ll probably take a look at BackBlaze when they kick home users off.
Take a look at Macrium Reflect. The free edition meet all of my needs and I backup to a local NAS device.
FWIW, even though I’ve got half a year before I have to find a replacement, I just spent the last hour or so comparison shopping. I’m currently leaning toward Backblaze or SpiderOak One.
I went to CrashPlan from Carbonite a year ago because Carbonite ceased being a problem-free backup and started requiring an awful lot of messing with to keep running. It also started causing conflicts with other things running on my computer. Support was not at all helpful, either. So I’ve sworn off Carbonite I only have a single computer to back up, so maybe I’ll sign up for the small business option from CrashPlan.
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