Craig's Online Backup Service Review

Introduction to Online Backup    Backup FAQ    Backup Software Review    Backup Service Review

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Online backup, also called remote backup or offsite backup, has become very hot in the backup industry. Compared with traditional backup solutions, it has a lot of revolutionary ideas:

  • You don't need to setup any complicated backup device;
  • No need to change tapes or other backup media;
  • You can backup your computer from anywhere;
  • You can access your data, or restore your files remotely;
  • Your data is protected even if your office is hit with any major disaster, such as fire, flood, theft or earthquake, etc.

Who need Online Backup (Online Storage) service?

  • If you are a small company, and if you don't yet have an offsite backup solution, you should definitely consider it. 
  • If you need to store your files in a central location for many people to access, you should look at Online Storage service.
  • If you have USB disk based backup and think you are safe, think again!

Steps to setup Online Backup service

  • Sign up an Online Backup service website; 
  • Install the online backup client software
  • Create backup tasks.

You can get all these done in less than 5 minutes, which is many times faster than the traditional backup service.

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How to choose an Online Backup service provider?

Because online backup service is very hot, today you can find a lot of such service providers. While competition is generally good; too much competition can be frustrating to users. In fact, most Online Backup services are not suitable for serious use. Only a handful of Online Backup services are truly good for business purposes.

You can also find a lot of Online Backup Reviews. However, most of the reviewers have not been in this business long enough; moreover, few reviewers have actually tried all the services. This results a lot of amateur reviews. In some extreme cases, a reviewer simply lists about 80 online backup / online storage services, which is completely useless.  

In choosing an Online Backup / Online Storage service provider, you need to define a few criteria:

  • Compare the service features: does the service have all the features you want? e.g. can the backup be performed automatically? Does it support data encryption? Does it support incremental backup? Does it allow remote access and remote file sharing?
  • Is the service reliable: Try the service and see if the service is reliable enough for you. Most companies offer free / try service before upgrading to premium service.
  • Is the company reliable: Many people only looked at the price when choosing a service provider, which is very wrong. Remember high-end storage can be 10 times more expensive and 100 times more valuable than cheap storage / backup service that doesn't work! The worst nightmare is when your service provider gets out of business, whether bankrupt or acquired by another company. This happened before with XDrive and Mozy. Look for a service provider with a profit business model, not a money-losing model.
  • Compare the service performance. Some service providers have bad system design and cannot scale up. The result is their service becomes very slow; some service providers may be in a different country where the Internet connection is slow. You need to test the service performance before you commit.
  • Cost Comparison: Again, never simply go for the cheapest / free service. In our evaluation, most free services are un-suitable for serious use. The idea is simple: if a free service is actually usable, then the service provider will simply lose too much money and cannot stay in business. On the other hand, don't over pay for the service unless you have a very deep pocket.
  • Group manageability: if you have worked in a big enterprise, you know that group administration is extremely important for a large organization.

Setup your own brand Online Backup system?

Unless you have a lot of budget, say over $300K, you should never try to develop your own online backup system. The cost of developing the technologies, purchasing software and hardware, hosting the system can easily add up to more than $300K.

If you need a dedicated online backup system, you might want to look into hosted solution. Some companies, e.g. has co-branded service or private domain service. The cost of hosted solution is generally 10 times cheaper than an in-house solution.


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