Choosing An Online Backup Service

Choosing An Online Backup Service

In honor of the fact that I am writing this while at Macworld Expo, I thought I would point out an article from Macworld’s website.

DocumentSnap reader Brooke (a name that doesn’t at all bring back painful childhood taunting memories) pointed out this article: Which online backup service is right for you?.

If you’re thinking of choosing an online backup, it is a pretty good comparison.

If you don’t back up your Mac’s files, then it’s a matter of when—not if—you’ll lose data that’s precious to you. Apple already robbed Mac users of any excuse not to back up regularly with Time Machine. But a single bad power surge, or a true disaster like fire or vicious weather, could render your Time Machine backups worthless.

Fortunately, off-site backup is easier than ever. A slew of Web services offer affordable online backup for your Mac. These services are often simple to use as well: you install software from the service on your computer, and it backs up your files over the Internet. By keeping current copies of your treasured data far away from your home, you can feel far more confident that your files are safe.

The article runs through Backblaze, Mozy, Carbonite, Jungle Disk, Dropbox, and Crashplan. Even though it is a Macworld article, all of those services are cross-platform.

Do you disagree with any of their points, or do you love a service that they didn’t mention? Lets hear about it in the comments.

About the Author

Brooks Duncan helps individuals and small businesses go paperless. He's been an accountant, a software developer, a manager in a very large corporation, and has run DocumentSnap since 2008. You can find Brooks on Twitter at @documentsnap or @brooksduncan. Thanks for stopping by.

Leave a Reply 6 comments

w0qj - June 19, 2011 Reply

Good review – here are a few recent changes as of June 2011:
You get 5GB of cloud storage space with the FREE version, but now there is no restriction to the number of computers you can sync/backup (up from 2).
It gives you the ability to upload and sync any folder on your computer.
It is the only service that offers such a broad device and OS support with apps for BlackBerry, Android, iPhone/iPad, Symbian, not to mention your computer!
You can also stream MP3 music files to your smartphone or computer.

Also if you use the below referral code you get a bonus 500MB extra on top of your Free 5GB!

Hope it helps someone.

David - May 30, 2011 Reply

Just got my online backup service from online backup services really save the day because i can now backup all my files and save them from getting lost.

Vince - January 28, 2011 Reply

This is a very great article.I never forget to backup all my crucial files and i do backup with an online backup software i have installed on my computer called Safecopy online backup.This backup system is cost effective and so efficient.I have now used it for two years and i have no complaints about it.

@snafu77 - January 27, 2011 Reply

I have been researching this awhile since I wanted to spend my money wisely and secure my data against loss. A key issue when choosing any of those backup/cloud storage services is getting your data after a catastrophe. Some of those services just don't hold up when attempting to perform restores. After reviewing some of the tech support message boards for a few of those mentioned companies I could tell that they aren't worth using.
I've settled on a multifaceted approach. I am using Jungle Disk with its built in encryption to store all my documents including things like my mortgage records. I can access this data as a synced drive on my main workstation and as a network share on my Macbook Pro. If I lose my laptop all I need to do is perform a password change and my information is no longer accessible. Cost $3 a month plus $0.15 per gb.
I am also using CrashPlan's unlimited plan. I backup my all the systems in my home to a drive on my main workstation. That gets backed up to Crash Plan. Cost $5 a month. The unlimited storage space and solid reliability are fantastic at this price. These guys will actually ship you a drive for initial backup or for a restoration(extra fee). That's huge if you don't have decent broadband service.
I also backup my data to a local drive which is put into a safety deposit box with other important real docs. Since I already pay for this there is no new cost involved.
It's a cheap, secure and redundant setup. In order for me to lose the pics, videos and documents I really value my house and bank would have to be destroyed as well as Crash Plan's and Jungle Disk's servers.

    Brooks Duncan - January 30, 2011 Reply

    Thanks for this. Your approach sounds like what I am going to do. For years I have had everything on Jungle Disk. However, this is getting pretty expensive compared to the alternatives. So I was thinking of shifting everything except for my super-critical-I-will-die-if-I-lose-them files to Crashplan. Good comment!

Judas - January 27, 2011 Reply

I think they left out my personal favorite and the only one that really worked for me (after compaing a few alternatives around 1 year ago): SugarSync. It has worked for me and others I have recommended it to flawlessly since.

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