I have been spending some time lately researching and testing a few different cloud backup options. Im going to treat cloud backups separate from cloud syncing options like Dropbox or SugarSync, because while they do keep copies of your files in the cloud, these services are much more useful for files you are working on then for keeping archive copies of everything.
All of the services I will go over are paid services, most have free trials available, and some of the companies offer free services as well. Lastly, although many of the cloud backup services are multi platform, I have only tested them on the Mac. Since there are so many of these services now, I obviously won't be able to review all of them, but that isn't to say there is anything wrong with a service that I didn't mention here.
The first service I'd like to mention is DollyDrive, which is a very unique service that allows your Mac's Time Machine software to backup directly to the cloud, as well as having some local backup options. To the Mac, your Time Machine backup works just like it would with a local disk, but you have access to it anywhere you have the internet. DollyDrive offers plans from as low as $3 /month for 50GBs, up to $40/month for 2TB! Plus for every month you stay subscribed, they add 5GB on to your storage allotment. I was very interested when I learned of this service, but sadly haven't been able to test it yet, as my Time Machine backups are much to massive to push to the cloud on my internet connection. For an added cost, or if you pay for a longer term in advance, DollyDrive will ship you a drive to back up your files onto, which they will load into the system and save you the long upload time.
Carbonite is the next service were going to go over, and it seems that for a while it was the one that the most people had heard of. Carbonite offers cloud based backups for the Mac and Windows, it installs as a small program on your computer and backs up user files smaller than 4GBs, although larger files can be added as well. All 3 plans include unlimited storage, but the basic home plan won't allow you to back up files from an external hard drive. Carbonite offers access to your backed up files either through the website, or on apps for various mobile platforms. Pricing starts at $59/year and goes to $149. The more expensive plan includes local backup options, and if you live in the U.S and chose the Home Premier plan, you can even have your files mailed to you on a drive. I have not personally tested the carbonite service, but they do have excellent reviews.
Next up is Backblaze, which is the first one of these services I tested myself. Much like carbonite, backblaze installs as a small program on your computer, and at least on the Mac, seems to have the nicest app for customizing the settings you want. Backblaze is $5 /month (per computer) or less if you buy for 1 or 2 years in advance, and also offers unlimited storage. My biggest complaint when I was testing backblaze, is that their backup selection strategy requires you to exclude things rather than include them for backup. I understand the reasoning behind it, since you will want backups of more than just the things you may remember at the time, but my backups would have ended up being so ridiculously massive that it would have taken me almost a year to complete the initial backup. Now obviously you can exclude things, but I much prefer to be able to pick specific files or folders to back up. Backblaze allows you to keep multiple versions of a file, as well as access to deleted files, although these are cleared out of their system 30 days after the files are deleted from your computer. They do allow you to back up external drives, but if they are not connected to your computer at least once every thirty days, those files could also be removed from their servers.
As I mentioned at the beginning, there are many cloud backup services, and I have only been able to research and test a few, hopefully though, there is enough information here to make a choice, and keep in mind that many cloud backup services offer free trials.
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