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Author Topic: SpiderOak - very nice people =)  (Read 23321 times)
tomos
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« on: April 07, 2011, 06:04:05 AM »

I got an account with SpiderOak sometime in 2008 (I think that was shortly after they started up) - it was a special offer - I got a 10GB account.

I believe I never actually used it. After seeing positive reports about it here (especially that all data is encrypted) I rooted around and fired it up but was unable to access the account. I contacted them and was very honest about not using it etc. The software was an early version & wasnt working/connecting any more, but my password didnt work online either (which may well have been my fault). Anyways in the end we cancelled the account and I created a new one and they gave me 10GB on it (default free account is 2GB)

Which I think was very good of them, service was prompt and very friendly too Thmbsup
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Tom
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« Reply #1 on: April 07, 2011, 06:29:10 AM »

I agree - I ended up with way more storage because of a glitch in a sign up recommended by a friend! Always answer queries too... Thmbsup
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iphigenie
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« Reply #2 on: April 07, 2011, 01:37:22 PM »

I am very pleased with spideroak, been a paying customer for a while, got several people to use it (although none paying i dont think). They seem like a bunch of real people working together, which is how i prefer my online companies to be. People with names, less posturing, pedigree and less legalese than many Thmbsup (many of the online backup companies have slick site, 2-3 "pedigreed serial silicon valley entrepreneurs" listed on the about page, no real people and no real contact details...)

Early on the main attraction was that it worked on linux, so no matter what machine i had and what os I booted, i could backup and recover things. Things like versioning and encryption came as icing on the cake. I do think the sync is a bit unwieldy (especially in disk space used) but it is safe. I think I have used nearly all features at one point or another.
« Last Edit: April 07, 2011, 01:39:34 PM by iphigenie » Logged
Deozaan
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« Reply #3 on: April 07, 2011, 05:17:14 PM »

The thing I don't like about SpiderOak (the software) is that if you try to restore from a backup (after a format, for example), it will copy everything back to the original directory locations and doesn't give you an option to download the content to a different location. This isn't good if you moved file locations since your last install (e.g. Games are now on E:\Games\ instead of D:\Games).

Then you have to manually delete the old backup locations and manually add the new backup locations instead of just being able to choose an option like "restore these files to this new location and use the new location for future backups."
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« Reply #4 on: April 07, 2011, 06:52:26 PM »

SpiderOak seems like a nice company, and I somehow find their stance on "unlimited storage" reassuring - they don't offer it. And they don't just "encrypt everything", they use zero-knowledge encryption, and even avoid cross-customer block de-duplication (which could save them significant storage costs) simply because it would be a potential security problem.

I've got their blog added in Website Watcher, there's occasionally some really interesting stuff there.

Unfortunately the client software isn't perfect - it's a bit on the slow side, even if it's been improved a fair amount. I know the guys want to keep their code as portable as possible, but it'd be really really nice if they added NTFS USN Journal support (can speed up scanning for changes after system boot by craploads) and would split into a service+GUI so the backup can run without being logged on...

Oh, and offer smaller plans. The free offering is a bit little for me, but OTOH I really don't need 100GB of storage. I can understand why they don't want to go into, say, per-gigabyte prices... But perhaps 10 or 25GB increments?
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tomos
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« Reply #5 on: April 08, 2011, 03:59:32 AM »

Oh, and offer smaller plans. The free offering is a bit little for me, but OTOH I really don't need 100GB of storage. I can understand why they don't want to go into, say, per-gigabyte prices... But perhaps 10 or 25GB increments?

+1 to that.
Dropbox is the same - no smaller plans. Mind you I see you get 100GB with spideroak & only 50GB with dropbox - both for $100
I'd be tempted by a 50GB SpiderOak plan...
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Tom
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« Reply #6 on: April 09, 2011, 12:03:57 PM »

The thing I don't like about SpiderOak (the software) is that if you try to restore from a backup (after a format, for example), it will copy everything back to the original directory locations and doesn't give you an option to download the content to a different location.

I went and restored a whole bunch of settings etc. and it did ask me whether I wanted them in the original location or a folder of my chosing.
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iphigenie
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« Reply #7 on: April 09, 2011, 12:09:34 PM »

another nice feature: command line - every action, configuration etc. you can do in the gui you can also do in the command line. Which means you can create stuff like "add this file to spideroak backup" context menus or in scripts. Or if for some reason the gui has problems you can go restore a file...

I don't know if others offer that too, but I have found it useful smiley

I do find that the synchronisation is a bit inefficient, but as mentioned in this thread it is the price of encryption. I used to have some syncs but they caused me problems, but perhaps I should revisit that. Problem is the main things I want to sync are settings and saved games, so not 1 tree, but lots of little 2-3 file syncs
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wraith808
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« Reply #8 on: April 09, 2011, 01:21:10 PM »

Oh, and offer smaller plans. The free offering is a bit little for me, but OTOH I really don't need 100GB of storage. I can understand why they don't want to go into, say, per-gigabyte prices... But perhaps 10 or 25GB increments?

+1 to that.
Dropbox is the same - no smaller plans. Mind you I see you get 100GB with spideroak & only 50GB with dropbox - both for $100
I'd be tempted by a 50GB SpiderOak plan...

That's one of the reasons I like JungleDisk so much.  I only get charged for what I use.  When I started, I was at an equivalent size to my dropbox (about 2GB) for a long time.  I'm now backing up stuff from my kids' and wife's computers, along with more of my own, so I'm up to 8GB now.  I didn't pay for 8GB when I had only 2, and now that I'm at 8, I'm not paying for my future possible use.

That's actually the core of it; it's sort of like hosting plans.  You pay for a maximum theoretical use, which I don't really enjoy.  Especially given that they don't allocate the space in a lot of cases until they actually need it.
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J-Mac
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« Reply #9 on: April 12, 2011, 11:06:29 PM »

I have Jungle Disk also but I am thinking of sending my files to Amazon S3 another way, perhaps via SFFS. Two problems I have with Jungle Disk: They can't seem to get a clean build out the first time around. Each time I updated there were problems that required a subsequent release to fix. Secondly, I have my S3 data storage mapped to a virtual drive on my PC but that is the only way I can view my files real time. If I use another S3 browser (E.g., Cloudberry Explorer) my data is encoded in a way that you can't browse it. If I use another upload method I will be able to see my data's file/folder hierarchy online.

Spider Oak does look decent though. I was just looking at that last week. I might move from my Pro Dropbox account to SO.

Thanks!

Jim
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wraith808
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« Reply #10 on: April 12, 2011, 11:25:35 PM »

I have Jungle Disk also but I am thinking of sending my files to Amazon S3 another way, perhaps via SFFS. Two problems I have with Jungle Disk: They can't seem to get a clean build out the first time around. Each time I updated there were problems that required a subsequent release to fix. Secondly, I have my S3 data storage mapped to a virtual drive on my PC but that is the only way I can view my files real time. If I use another S3 browser (E.g., Cloudberry Explorer) my data is encoded in a way that you can't browse it. If I use another upload method I will be able to see my data's file/folder hierarchy online.

I haven't had that problem with Jungle Disk- and I use it on 7 different computers/OSes!  That would be a pain... what type of account are you using?  And you can use S3 in compatibility mode with Jungle Disk, though I just map my drive to my computer using Jungle Disk's facility.

http://help.jungledisk.co...eid=understanding_buckets

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J-Mac
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« Reply #11 on: April 13, 2011, 12:13:31 AM »

Biggest problems were with the first 2.x release, and also the initial few 3.x releases. I would point you to their forum but unfortunately they "re-did" their forum, deleted a lot of threads and populated the bulk of the subforums with JD-Employees Only topics, kinda like FAQs.

I only use my old S3 "Legacy" buckets there; I don’t use their Rackspace online disks primarily because you cannot map a drive to the Rackspace disks and thus cannot restore files individually. If you have your JD backups on S3 try looking at them with one of the other S3 Explorers. You can't tell what is what.

My account was with the original Jungle Disk and I have my own S3 account rather than using a Jungle Disk managed S3 account.

Jim
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wraith808
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« Reply #12 on: April 13, 2011, 08:37:35 AM »

I have my own S3 account also (I use it for other stuff), and mine was with the original JD (now Personal Desktop Edition).  I did create a new 'disk', but it was on my own account.  I use CloudBerry on S3 and see my files, so I'm not sure what the difference is- but it works.  I also use explorer to browse it also, and that works also.

I did find out that they're trying to decide 'what to do about perpetual accounts.'  I hope that isn't as ominous as it sounds.
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« Reply #13 on: April 13, 2011, 09:23:50 AM »

I have my own S3 account also (I use it for other stuff), and mine was with the original JD (now Personal Desktop Edition).  I did create a new 'disk', but it was on my own account.  I use CloudBerry on S3 and see my files, so I'm not sure what the difference is- but it works.  I also use explorer to browse it also, and that works also.

Hmmm... Cloudberry shows me this for my JD account on S3:



And this for my mapped drive:



Quote
I did find out that they're trying to decide 'what to do about perpetual accounts.'  I hope that isn't as ominous as it sounds.

I heard something also. I'm sure it's not good - for us, anyway. Like "lifetime" licenses, these things never last.  Cry

Jim
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wraith808
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« Reply #14 on: April 13, 2011, 09:49:02 AM »

I have my own S3 account also (I use it for other stuff), and mine was with the original JD (now Personal Desktop Edition).  I did create a new 'disk', but it was on my own account.  I use CloudBerry on S3 and see my files, so I'm not sure what the difference is- but it works.  I also use explorer to browse it also, and that works also.

Hmmm... Cloudberry shows me this for my JD account on S3:
 (see attachment in previous post)
And this for my mapped drive:
 (see attachment in previous post)
Then it's not S3 compatible.  I have two on S3 - one is compatible (it doesn't have as many features that way) and the other one isn't.  The differences in the naming of the buckets is even obvious...



Quote
I did find out that they're trying to decide 'what to do about perpetual accounts.'  I hope that isn't as ominous as it sounds.

I heard something also. I'm sure it's not good - for us, anyway. Like "lifetime" licenses, these things never last.  Cry

You take a chance on them and pay a higher price to support the service- and when they become solvent, they forget who helped them get to that point.  And at this point, all they're providing me for free is the software.  I pay for the web interface.  And I pay amazon for my storage.  So I don't know how they could justify charging me a monthly fee for *that*.
« Last Edit: April 13, 2011, 10:07:41 AM by wraith808 » Logged

tomos
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« Reply #15 on: April 13, 2011, 04:47:59 PM »

^ I had the same problem with Jungle Disk & S3 (account created summer 2008) - unreadable in Cloudberry. Which discovery, combined with a failure of JD -with no warnings- prompted me to start using SFFS to backup directly to S3.
Also I was wary of what the future might be bringing... [edit] (for Jungle Disk/S3) [/edit]
« Last Edit: April 13, 2011, 04:50:16 PM by tomos » Logged

Tom
tomos
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« Reply #16 on: April 13, 2011, 04:48:31 PM »

The thing I don't like about SpiderOak (the software) is that if you try to restore from a backup (after a format, for example), it will copy everything back to the original directory locations and doesn't give you an option to download the content to a different location.

I went and restored a whole bunch of settings etc. and it did ask me whether I wanted them in the original location or a folder of my chosing.

Default is to add it to your Download folder (here it was aimed at My Docs/Downloads, which I've actually never used) but it also allows you to customise the default location. Downloads (restored files) have the correct last-modified-date timestamps.
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Tom
wraith808
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« Reply #17 on: April 15, 2011, 10:33:52 AM »

^ I had the same problem with Jungle Disk & S3 (account created summer 2008) - unreadable in Cloudberry. Which discovery, combined with a failure of JD -with no warnings- prompted me to start using SFFS to backup directly to S3.
Also I was wary of what the future might be bringing... [edit] (for Jungle Disk/S3) [/edit]

What is SFFS?
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tomos
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« Reply #18 on: April 15, 2011, 11:29:09 AM »

^ I had the same problem with Jungle Disk & S3 (account created summer 2008) - unreadable in Cloudberry. Which discovery, combined with a failure of JD -with no warnings- prompted me to start using SFFS to backup directly to S3.
Also I was wary of what the future might be bringing... [edit] (for Jungle Disk/S3) [/edit]

What is SFFS?

sorry about that wraith,
it's such a mouthful of a name: super flexible file synchronizer (http://www.superflexible.com/)
There's a few threads about it here on dc.


[edit] it's really a backup &/or a sync programme (the name is a bit misleading). Here's a screenshot of one of my S3 backups being edited: [/edit]

« Last Edit: April 15, 2011, 11:38:15 AM by tomos » Logged

Tom
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« Reply #19 on: April 15, 2011, 11:59:13 AM »

Thanks for the clarification- I'd figured it out, and saw that there was a discount still available.  Thinking about picking it up...
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« Reply #20 on: April 17, 2011, 04:24:05 PM »

Just to crosslink things a bit: stay away from DropBox, SpiderOak ftw.
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« Reply #21 on: April 17, 2011, 06:19:54 PM »

I wanted to post this in the dropbox deduplication thread but here is probably better :

I'm backing up an encrypted DB to a "spideroak folder" and spiderOak uploads the file fine. However, spideroak doesn't seem to deduplicate anything and sends the whole 300MB each time. I think If uploaded something like 1.5 useless GB today... and I already almost maxed out my 2gb account !

What am I doing wrong ?

[I checked the forum there and didn't find any useful info... Next step for me : send them an email]

[2nd edit... Wondering if NTFS compression could also be a problem... just thinking out loud...]
« Last Edit: April 17, 2011, 06:50:00 PM by Armando » Logged

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« Reply #22 on: April 17, 2011, 06:49:36 PM »

Armando: Do you have this problem only with SpiderOak or does it happen with everything else (dropbox and such)?

Do you know if the DB is being encrypted block by block or using something like Cypher Block Chainingw? If you have Cypher Block Chaining on, then every change you make to any block in the file is propagated to the whole file (or to the blocks after the modified blocks? I'm not sure, now), so it's expectable that spideroak re-uploads the whole file.
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Armando
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« Reply #23 on: April 17, 2011, 07:03:38 PM »

Thanks jgpaiva. It's an Access DB (MBD file) using the full file Jet encryption. It's weak encryption by any means -- basically only prevents opening/modifying the file in an editor (it's RC4 algorithm, 32-bit encryption... but encryption key is inside the file header smiley )

I guess I could just use it unencrypted and use a truecrypt container to encrypt it locally. Not sure. But I still don't understand why I didn't have this problem with dropbox, but have it with spideroak...  tellme
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Armando
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« Reply #24 on: April 17, 2011, 07:42:41 PM »

hmmm... I'm really putting spideroak on hold for now, until I resolve this problem.
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