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Help me choose an online backup service

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based on the free ones I have tried, Idrive seems to be the fastest.
Last time I tried Acronis it looked suspiciously like Mozy which I dropped because it was hard to tell what if anything it was doing.

I definitely have been considering just doing an encrypted ftp upload.. It's definitely a viable possibility.

And yes i do already use software (Super Flexible File Synchronizer) for the local backups that i could try to leverage for this task.

So yeah, if i don't find something I really like, I may fall back on ftp uploading of encrypted backups.

You know tranglos I'm starting to think more and more the idea of grabbing a $10/month hosting account with unlimited or large storage space and just using encrypted ftp may be the way to go.

It's not nearly as convenient and automatic, but it does offer the control and also can serve as a backup place to host an emergency backup website..


I've been using Cloudberry Desktop Backup for some time now (two years. maybe?). You buy the standalone app once (30 dollars, you are allowed to use it in a couple of pcs) and it uses Amazon S3 for storage, which is notoriouly cheap. I have recursive local backups but I use the program with the same scenario you described in mind (fire, robbery. etc). It's light, automated and transparent.

As far I can see Cloudberry Backup features everything you are looking for, and some more, if you're interested... things like (optional) file versioning and (optional) real-time backup.

Cheers from Brazil


Web-based backup is in my view not a very good option. It's going to be slow to do proper syncs, doesn't do versioning (granted this may not be a concern for you), and in fact many web hosts actually have policies against using their "unlimited space" plans for this purpose. So while you may get away with it for a while, you could also find your account suspended without warning and unable to access your backups.

Having written about this quite some time ago now, though admittedly I never followed-up with my full recommendations (damn me!), I'm surprised you haven't considered CrashPlan yet. That's what I use and overall I'm quite pleased with it. Unlimited backup space, reasonable pricing, good level of control, cross-platform, versioning, etc. And if you have lots of data to backup, it's one of the few that offers both a "seeding" service (they send you a drive that you load up with most of your data, then you don't need to upload it over your no-doubt-not-very-fat-outgoing-Internet-pipe), as well as an emergency recovery service (they send you a drive with your recovery data on it, instead of having to download 100s of GB over the wire). Both services cost extra, but are worth it for large data IMO. I backup 1.5TB with them right now. Also, though it may not be of interest if you already have backup software taking care of everything else, Crashplan does do local backup as well.

Edit: I don't know how S3 got this reputation of being cheap, but if you actually have large amounts of data, it's really, really not. I have 1.5TB of data. I pay CrashPlan $50/yr and it's unlimited, I have all 1.5TB up there now so I know it allows at least that much. According to this S3 calculator, just to store that much data at S3, much less transfer in and out any notable amount, it would cost me $135/mo for "reduced redundancy storage", more for full redundancy. Almost any of the other services, from Carbonite to Mozy to Humyo are cheaper for equivalent storage. S3 is nice due to its accessibility options, but for anything larger than a few 10s of GBs it's not really cost competitive in my view.

- Oshyan


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