I have been backing up my data online for several years now and haven’t had any issues with doing so. I don’t mind backing up my data to the cloud, for a few reasons with the most important being that my data is offsite. The fact that I can restore my data at anytime is also a huge benefit.
About six months ago I switched my data backups to BackBlaze from Mozy. I didn’t have any issues with Mozy, but their pricing structure changed some time ago and it became too costly for me to keep my data with them, so I went elsewhere. After doing some research I settled on BackBlaze. Since that time I have completed backing up almost 370 GB of data to their servers and have had no issues with doing so.
Now that I have finally completed my initial data backup, I decided to put together a list of the 11 reasons (10 is too common) I like BackBlaze for backing up my files.
1. Affordable Price
Being able to afford to backup my data was an important requirement when I was looking for an online cloud backup provider. BackBlaze is very affordable for anyone regardless of how much data you need to backup. As with many cloud solutions, they offer three different pricing levels:
- $3.96 a month for 2 years ($95 total).
- $4.17 a month for 1 year ($50 total).
- $5 auto-bill each month.
2. Unlimited Data Storage
Anyone that has heard of this term is skeptical if it really true. Many of us that have done business online realize that there is really no “unlimited” anywhere. Well, when it comes to online storage, many companies will list “unlimited” but may cap the bandwidth speeds at a certain amount of data stored. With BackBlaze that simply isn’t true. I have almost 370 GB of data backed up with them, and not once did my upload speed get capped – my ISP bandwidth usage records can prove that. Every time I backed up I used the full upload speeds of my ISP (about 11 GB/day) regardless of how much I had backed up.
3. External Hard Drive Support
While this may not seem like a big deal, it is to me. All the data that I want to backup online is stored on an external hard drive. The other option I was looking at – Carbonite – required me to pay for a more expensive package in order to backup from my external hard drive. BackBlaze allows you to backup data from external hard drives connected through a USB or Firewire. Network Attached Storage (NAS) drives are not backed up.
Here is a list of what is and isn’t backed up:
|Backed Up||NOT Backed Up|
|USB Drives||Network Attached Storage (NAS) drives|
|Firewire drives||TimeMachine drives|
|Internal Drives||Virtual Machines|
|Drive partitions||Mounted Volumes|
4. Files are Encrypted
Besides being affordable another big requirement for me was security. I wanted to ensure that when I backup my data that I am the only one that has access to my files. When it comes to encryption, most online cloud solutions provide this ability. All my data is encrypted when it is stored on the BackBlaze servers so I know that my data is safe. While the default is for BackBalze to use their own highly-guarded password, if you choose, you can use your own password instead, which will make your data that much safer.
5. No File Size Limitations
While not a huge requirement, I know some people may have very large files that need to be backed up. The largest files that I have are home HD videos that can be several gigabytes in size. BackBlaze allows you to exclude large files, if you choose, or change it to “No Limits”, which essentially allows you to backup any file regardless of size.
6. Multiple Restore Options
A backup is only as good as its ability to restore your data. In this case BackBlaze provides three methods of restoring your data:
- Web Download (free)
- You can download your files from a Web browser. A zip file will be generated that will contain all the files you wish to restore. Once the zip file is ready, you will receive an e-mail once your files are ready to be restored.
- USB Flash Drive ($99)
- If you have several gigabytes of files that would take a long time to download, or your ISP caps your bandwidth, you can have your files shipped to you on a USB flash drive. The maximum amount of data for this method is 28GB.
- USB Hard Drive ($189)
- For those with a lot of data, you can have your files shipped to you on a USB hard drive. The hard drive will be large enough to contain all your data. The maximum amount of data for this method is 1TB.
In my case, I also store my data on a 2.5″ external hard drive that I also store offsite, so if I were to restore all my data I would restore from the 2.5″ external hard drive and anything that is missing I would restore from BackBlaze.
7. File Archiving
BackBlaze is designed to help keep your files protected and will even keep multiple versions of a file for up to 30 days. This can be helpful if you accidentally deleted a file a few weeks ago and need to restore that file. With BackBlaze you will be able to perform such an action. After 30 days, however, your file will be removed from your backup.
8. Automatic Throttling
While I mentioned that BackBlaze can use the full speed of your Internet connection, there may be times that you want it to reduce the speed in order to allow other applications to access the Internet, such as Skype or online games. In this case, BackBlaze will automatically throttle its bandwidth usage to allow other applications to access the Internet. If you wish, you can also manually throttle BackBlaze to limit the speed it uses to upload your files.
9. Locate You Computer
This is an interesting feature of BackBlaze. While I am on a desktop, I know that many people are using a laptop, and this feature will benefit you. If you have every misplaced, lost or had your laptop stolen, this feature of BackBlaze can help you locate your computer. By logging into your account, the BackBlaze application will report the last time the computer was online, and the last IP address of your computer. You can also use their mapping tool to map the location of your computer, that will hopefully help locate it. This feature is included without any additional cost.
10. Small Company
BackBlaze isn’t a large, face-less corporation that I have seen online. Many online cloud solutions are run by a large organization that cares about their bottom-line. BackBlaze is a smaller organization that doesn’t hide behind a logo, but are open to how they run their business, and how they manage their costs of data storage. I believe that are also making a profit, which is great because that will ensure they continue to provide their solution for years to come.
11. Keeps Their Costs Down
Since BackBlaze isn’t a large organization, and they offer unlimited storage space for a low cost, they need to find ways to keep their costs down. Once method is that they design their own storage system to efficiently store all their client’s data. You can even read about how they create their storage system on their blog/website, where they also provide information on how you can create your own system just like theirs.
So there you have 11 reasons why I chose BackBlaze to backup my data. If you are looking for a good online cloud backup solution I highly recommend you try out BackBlaze. There is a free trial of BackBlaze that you can take advantage of to see if BackBlaze suits your needs.