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Last post Author Topic: Help me choose an online backup service  (Read 42230 times)

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #100 on: October 20, 2012, 03:47:34 PM »
I stopped using CrashPlan because of the outrageous hogging memory issues, and I'm still pissed off about that, but I thought it only right that I post again and say that I just purchased a 1yr family plan subscription to CrashPlan, using the 50% discount offer described for past carbonite users described here (looks like it doesn't care what email you put in by the way).

The main reason I came back to crash plan is that for this price ($50 for first year, $120 normal yearly price) you can configure something like 10 pcs to have their files backed up online.  While the memory hogging is a serious problem for my primary pc, which i will have to go try to solve by messing with the java settings, this was simply too good an offer not to jump on for backing up the other spare pcs/laptops in my house, and offering the space for my immediate family.

Put another way, I'm not at all convinced that CrashPlan is the right solution for someone with a single PC with tons of files to backup, but if you have a bunch of PCs with a small number of files, it seems like an excellent deal and from what I read you are unlikely to run into the memory hogging issues if you have small backup file sets.

So CrashPlan seems ideal for putting on every computer in the family to make sure that it backs up working documents, etc.  For example I've been keeping the books for the building on a laptop which has no other purpose than to keep the books.. I'm not going to pay backblaze $60/year just to keep 5 files backed up online.  CrashPlan seems well suited for this.

(Though I will note that for such small file sets, I could get away with one of the free online backup services, or one of the low-volume backup services).

But anyway, although not perfect, I do think CrashPlan seems like a good solution for people with lots of PCs (or who can be responsible for setting up multiple PCs for their family members).  And at $50 for a year, seems hard to go wrong.



Someone correct me if I'm wrong about this.. (NO I AM NOT WRONG).

One VERY important note for people setting up backups of multiple family PCs:  *ALL* computers are forced to have the SAME encryption password and account access(!).  This means that anyone on any of these PCs could access the backed up files of any of the other PCs.

This feels like a major security risk to me, though I suppose it's useful in keeping people from sharing a family plan with non-family members.  But you should know that this fact may severely limit the usefulness of the family plan.

Very uncool.  :down:
« Last Edit: October 20, 2012, 07:43:23 PM by mouser »

dr_andus

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #101 on: October 20, 2012, 05:16:01 PM »
There are a ton more of these services (mozy, sugarsync, etc.) that i haven't looked into yet.

So.. anyone gone through the process of evaluating these services have any recommendations?

I haven't done much evaluating and comparing but I've used MozyHome for years (at one point backing up 3 PCs but now I'm down to 2, one ancient WinXP and a 2-yr old Win7) and it does everything on your list. But the costs will naturally go up if you keep adding PCs and data.

wraith808

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #102 on: October 20, 2012, 09:44:33 PM »
One VERY important note for people setting up backups of multiple family PCs:  *ALL* computers are forced to have the SAME encryption password and account access(!).  This means that anyone on any of these PCs could access the backed up files of any of the other PCs.

This feels like a major security risk to me, though I suppose it's useful in keeping people from sharing a family plan with non-family members.  But you should know that this fact may severely limit the usefulness of the family plan.

Are there any that don't share like that?  All of the ones that I've tried share if they're on the same account.

Jibz

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #103 on: October 21, 2012, 09:50:18 AM »
I think they all work like that .. I mentioned it in the review thread last year as well.

For a tech user it seems like an obvious security problem, but you have to remember that this is aimed at family members who probably have access to each others machines anyway. What I found more troublesome is the fact that CrashPlan in effect gives you access to files outside your own account on the machine it is running on (i.e. it seems like you can restore files that were backed up from the administrator account or some other users account on the machine). I guess it is the price you pay for having a convenient service that can back up all files instead of just your own.

40hz

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #104 on: October 25, 2012, 06:56:34 AM »
What my understanding and experience says: Online Backup storage, a sound and reliable option! Without any doubt the technology is far better than the normal storage services and it has a lot of benefits to make the most of it. I always prefer using dropbox and Just cloud because of their reliable and secure services and also provide excellent backup features. They sync and update files on real time and create easy backup that fulfill all your tasks with ease. ! So the bottom line is that cloud storage can provide heavy space of storage within a short span of time, and it could possibly make your life easier. But the question arises, which online backup provider to choose with respect to price and need? Now that is what we need to discuss. Although to yield my answer in advance i still prefer Just Cloud over others but you can go with other options according to your need. For more options please consider given blog post for your assistance.

@Brett - Welcome to DC! When commenting or making recommendations in a forum, it's generally considered good etiquette the first time you post to state any business or other affiliations you may have if they're directly related to the topic under discussion.
:)
« Last Edit: October 25, 2012, 02:33:24 PM by mouser, Reason: removed spam link »

Jibz

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #105 on: October 25, 2012, 11:12:03 AM »
Yes, when I see a first post like that, I must admit the first thing I do is a quick google for the name and some keywords from the post :-[.

In this case, it shows accounts on about 10 different tech-oriented forums with only 1-2 posts that in essence are a short blurp about cloud services and a link to that same site (cloudreviews).

wraith808

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #106 on: October 25, 2012, 01:45:28 PM »
In the case that the person doesn't come back after being called out, I also think it appropriate to remove the original post.

tomos

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #107 on: October 25, 2012, 01:52:12 PM »
remove the link(s) at least?
Tom

40hz

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #108 on: October 25, 2012, 05:57:06 PM »
Yes, when I see a first post like that, I must admit the first thing I do is a quick google for the name and some keywords from the post :-[.

In this case, it shows accounts on about 10 different tech-oriented forums with only 1-2 posts that in essence are a short blurp about cloud services and a link to that same site (cloudreviews).

Me too!  :Thmbsup:

Oh yeah...he also shows up on LinkedIn.  :deal:

Quote
Brett Daren

IT Manager at Cloud

    Sacramento, California (Sacramento, California Area)
    Information Technology and Services


mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #109 on: October 29, 2012, 11:39:23 PM »
I wanted to give another quick update after finally setting up an online backup service and using it for the last week.

[I went with CrashPlan but any online backup service would do fine, except to say that CrashPlan is well suited if you have a bunch of computers that you own and want to back them all up.]

Anyway, the main thing I wanted to report is simply that it's a real feeling of relief to have critical documents backed up online.  It's just one layer of redundant backup protection, but it was definitely a weak link in my prior setup if there was ever a fire/robbery.

I just want to encourage anyone who has been flirting with the idea of setting up an online backup but who hasn't done so yet, to go ahead and pull the trigger.  It truly is a set it and forget solution and it really does serve a purpose.

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #110 on: October 30, 2012, 07:07:41 PM »
Another thing that really sucks about CrashPlan is the upload speed.. I'm regularly topping out at 30k/s.

Which is just further evidence that CrashPlan is probably best suited for people who have a bunch of computers to back up, but with very little data on each.

JavaJones

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #111 on: October 30, 2012, 07:49:26 PM »
I too continue to use CrashPlan, but remain frustrated with its high memory use and some other issues. The compelling factors in my case are different than mouser's. Unlike him I am in fact dealing with *lots* of data, over 2TB at this point. So I clearly need an unlimited service. That eliminates a number of options off the bat, and makes many others cost-prohibitive. This large data set causes 2 additional problems that further limit the field of options. First, in order to successfully backup 2TB of data "online", you need to either spend literally months uploading at a theoretical maximum speed (which as mouser points out, and we all know besides, is never realized in practice), or you need to have a physical drive sent to you to "seed" the backup. The latter option dramatically speeds the process and is essentially critical when dealing with more than 100-200GB of data, let alone 2TB+. On the other end of that issue, with *restore*, you likewise need a company that provides the service of sending you a recovery drive in the event of a failure, because who wants to be *downloading* 2TB of data to restore? So again this significantly limits my options. Thus any recommendation I could ever make about any service - CrashPlan or otherwise - must take these constraints into account and is therefore based on my particular needs which I grant are not necessarily common to many others.

Bottom line: if you have "big data", CrashPlan may be one of the few viable options, though it is far from ideal unfortunately. Personally I would hope to see truly native client versions of their backup engine in the future, with Qt-based cross-platform UI. This could accomplish similar cross-platform coherence while achieving much lower memory use (I believe) and higher efficiency.

P.S. Dunno if it has already been referenced or not, but here's a Wikipedia table of online backup options which can potentially narrow your options quickly when you're researching: http://en.wikipedia....line_backup_services

- Oshyan

rgdot

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #112 on: October 30, 2012, 09:02:37 PM »
I know this is not adding anything to the discussion but.........uploading, downloading that much goes over the caps of (even) business accounts here, several times over in almost all cases. If you ask me online backup loses its practicality when it goes over 1 (yes just 1) GB.

JavaJones

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #113 on: October 30, 2012, 09:05:21 PM »
I've been backing up my 2+TB of data online for more than a year now, so it's certainly possible. It wouldn't be without the "seeding" option though, which is why CrashPlan is one of the few workable services for my needs. Once the initial large data volume is seeded, even though I generate a lot of data regularly (5-25GB/wk, mostly photos), I can keep up just fine.

However I'm fortunate to have a broadband service with no data cap, and I've chosen it carefully in part for that reason. I know not everyone has the option, but sometimes if you research a bit there is indeed a possibility. A great example is Comcast regular consumer service is capped at 250GB, but the business class service is *not*. There is of course a price difference, but it's not near as bad as you might think.

- Oshyan

f0dder

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #114 on: October 31, 2012, 06:33:03 AM »
Another thing that really sucks about CrashPlan is the upload speed.. I'm regularly topping out at 30k/s.
That's so slow it's pretty near useless. Have you tried contacting them about it?
- carpe noctem

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #115 on: October 31, 2012, 06:44:51 AM »
I haven't.. I suppose it couldn't hurt to ask..

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #116 on: October 31, 2012, 06:47:15 AM »
Recent negative review of CrashPlan: http://goinside.com/...n-crashes-and-burns/

Also it should be said that CrashPlan has a support forum but its very obviously culled of negative stuff and kept virtually empty.. Another bad sign.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 06:52:54 AM by mouser »

Jibz

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #117 on: October 31, 2012, 07:14:08 AM »
Recent negative review of CrashPlan: http://goinside.com/...n-crashes-and-burns/

I am not saying there is not a lot of stuff that could be better about CrashPlan, but that is not the best review I've ever seen. Just look at the way he handles any comments that do not agree with him. Looks more like he was going for the snarky SEO headline he mentions at the beginning himself :-[.

I mean, just as an example, if you do just a little homework you would know that most services like this only backup what is in your documents folder and a select few other places by default -- some even only allow certain file types or locations to be backed up at all.
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 07:29:22 AM by Jibz »

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #118 on: October 31, 2012, 09:23:03 AM »
Agreed, it's not a very objective review..

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #119 on: October 31, 2012, 09:32:35 AM »
An update:

I contacted CrashPlan as f0dder suggested, and mentioned the discussions on this forum about CrashPlan; I mentioned that I would like to post any reply to my email to the forum threads.

Somewhat surprisingly I got a reply right away saying they read the post and yes I could include their reply.  Already you have to give them a lot of credit for such a fast support reply and having someone reply who felt comfortable saying I could post their reply:

Quote
I do note that you are using our old default settings of 300kbps when away and 200kbps when present.  Please adjust these settings under Settings > Network to something that best suits your network. For reference, our new default is no limit for both present and away. Any computer created in CrashPlan after June or so (I quite honestly do not remember when we made the adjustment) will have the new defaults.


I was advised to adjust my Network tab Settings for "Limit sending rate" upward from what support person said was "old defaults" of around 300k.

Now I had already adjusted those settings under "LAN", which is what I thought was the setting appropriate for me.  But I went ahead and changed the "WAN" settings this time, and whammo I'm up to 500k/s (!)

So the WAN network speed setting was the solution for me -- and i'm a happy camper.

And I must say I'm decidedly more optimistic about CrashPlan now, given both the new upload speed and the speed+quality of the support reply I got.  :up:
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 10:30:40 AM by mouser »

JavaJones

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #120 on: October 31, 2012, 01:43:43 PM »
What you say about their forum was not entirely the experience I had when I last checked/used it, but that was more than a year ago. My experience differed in the fact that I saw plenty of complaint threads, so it did not seem so much like the forum was "sanitized", and there was a reasonably level of response from support there, but still too many unanswered questions, particularly more obscure issues. In other words, I found that it was not a censorship issue (though that may be the case now, if they've decided to clean things up), rather they answered easy questions (um, yay?), but sometimes left harder ones unanswered, which is really the opposite of what's needed in a way; the easier questions should be covered by FAQ usually...

Anyway, glad to hear you got a quick response. Overall I was happy with their support and my direct contact with them, I think their forum support just may not be the best contact method.

Also, that review is pretty much worthless. The guy mentions no real, actual problems besides a default he doesn't like/agree with for what to backup (a default that I personally think is quite reasonable), and that the upload bandwidth being used wasn't ideal. But then he writes snarky and totally non-applicable responses to the legitimately helpful CrashPlan support rep that comments on his review. The rep said nothing promotional, they merely explained the choice of default and a possible reason for the slow upload, both of which could address his only reported issues. He fails to comment on the efficacy of the recommended fixes, spending several paragraphs simply saying how dumb the default is and how promotional the obviously not promotional CrashPlan post is. His responses to other comments are also terrible. Meanwhile his review title/headline implies that CrashPlan actually *crashed*, which he does not report at all in the text of the "review", again only citing what are essentially *defaults he doesn't agree with*. Whoopty fricking do. Sorry mouser, I'm a bit surprised you actually linked to that one. ;)

- Oshyan
« Last Edit: October 31, 2012, 01:49:06 PM by JavaJones »

f0dder

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #121 on: October 31, 2012, 02:04:27 PM »
Whoopty fricking do. Sorry mouser, I'm a bit surprised you actually linked to that one. ;)
Yeah, me too. The guy is a total douchebag appletard.
- carpe noctem

mouser

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #122 on: October 31, 2012, 02:37:12 PM »
Ok ok i get it! I should have read it more carefully before posting.  :-[

dr_andus

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #123 on: October 31, 2012, 04:37:29 PM »
There are a ton more of these services (mozy, sugarsync, etc.) that i haven't looked into yet.

So.. anyone gone through the process of evaluating these services have any recommendations?

I haven't done much evaluating and comparing but I've used MozyHome for years (at one point backing up 3 PCs but now I'm down to 2, one ancient WinXP and a 2-yr old Win7) and it does everything on your list. But the costs will naturally go up if you keep adding PCs and data.


If I haven't done much evaluating recently, then I will do some now. Since my earlier post I've received a message from Mozy saying the "The Unlimited subscription plan" I was on for the past 5 years or so "is no longer available" (i.e. being discontinued in 3 weeks) and my plan "will be automatically renewed to one which supports your current usage needs."

My current storage is 200GB (2 PCs), and I was paying around USD100 per year. Under the new plan I would be paying almost USD190 per year. That's a whopping 82% increase (at exact figures) at 3 weeks notice!

Moral of the story: be ready to switch suppliers at the drop of a hat! I've been also looking at this review (which didn't rate Mozy very highly anyway) to weigh up my options.

f0dder

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Re: Help me choose an online backup service
« Reply #124 on: November 01, 2012, 11:23:15 AM »
Moral of the story: be ready to switch suppliers at the drop of a hat!
Moral of the story: "unlimited storage" and "lifetime licenses" aren't sustainable business plans, so expect any such terms to change sooner than later :)
- carpe noctem