Inexpensive Cloud Backup – BackBlaze

Inexpensive cloud backup – BackBlaze | Tech Tips Article by PcCG

Backup Today

Backing up your computer is critical. It’s not a question of IF your hard drive fails, but rather WHEN it fails. The hard drive is the device that stores all of your data in your system. Many people get the idea that if they store the information on a USB hard drive they are good to go. Not so much… External hard drives fail as well, usually at a higher rate than internal drives.

It’s for these reasons, you MUST backup your computer if you have information you don’t want to lose. Be honest about the assessment! More than once, we’ve had clients tell us “there’s nothing I need to keep”, then years later a hard drive crashes and we get a call about how some files must be recovered. Data recovery is EXPENSIVE because it is difficult to do. This is why it’s so very important to backup. 

So how/what do I backup?

There are 2 solutions: Full local backup’s that capture a snapshot of the system including windows and all programs (we recommend Acronis), or cloud backup. Both have strengths and weaknesses. (For more on backup, check out our “save your memories” podcast.)

For years we’ve been asked about online backup and generally have suggested Carbonite as the most known solution. There hasn’t been much difference in the past between most online backup systems, but things in I.T. are always changing.

BackBlaze costs a mere $60 if purchased yearly. That's $5 per month to ensure all of your priceless pictures of your kids are safe!

BackBlaze will back up all of your computer files (except applications, which none of them do) and has no limits on videos or large file sizes like carbonite. Backblaze is one of the lest expensive cloud backup options around and has far fewer exclusions that alternative cloud-backup software have. We've encountered sad situations where clients had Carbonite and assumed it was backing up everything when it wasn't. There are quite a few asterisk's you have to carefully pay attention to with many backup solutions. Backblaze tends to grab almost everything regardless of size and file-type. It's settings are easy to check and modify should you want to make any changes. And their "unlimited" thus far for us, is truly unlimited! (The same can't be said for ATT's unlimited data!) I personally have had over 3TB or 3,000GB of data backed up, testing their "unlimited" policy for over a year with no issues.

Both systems allow you to supply your own encryption key, making it impossible even for them to view your files if you are very concerned about security of your data. If you use this option, you don't have to worry at all about your data being "on the cloud". It's unreadable to even the company storing your data without the decryption key. We use this personally - but keep in mind, should you lose or forget the decryption key, nobody on this planet can help you recover that data.

BackBlaze also allows you to backup external USB drives for the same price. Carbonite requires the “home plus” version, which is currently $112.00/year.

The last critical difference is we’ve read from several tech sources the BackBlaze backup client is more reliable and less stressful in terms of resources on your computer.

BackBlaze Carbonite Basic
$60/YEAR $72/YEAR
Backed up by default
ALL DATA
Backed up by default
PARTIAL DATA
Data storage limit
UNLIMITED
Data storage limit
UNLIMITED
Maximum file limit
UNLIMITED
Maximum file size
FILES OVER 4GB MANUALLY BACKED UP
External USB Drives
YES
External USB Drives
HOME PLUS VERSION REQUIRED ($99.99/year)
Personal Encrypt Key
YES
Personal Encrypt Key
WINDOWS ONLY
Native Mac/PC Client
YES
Native Mac/PC Client
YES

After our research we’ve come to the conclusion that BackBlaze is the way to go for cloud-based backup. It costs a mere $6 a month, and does not have the limits of carbonite or other providers.

It's important to note the purpose of this article isn't to pick on Carbonite. If we are working on a client's computer and see they are using Carbonite for their backup, that's perfectly fine! There are a couple things I like better about carbonite, such as the dots it puts on files allowing you to easily see the backup status. The carbonite software also allows you to pull/open files on your cell phone which is nice. I personally prefer my backup software backup everything and do its job as "backup" rather than allow cloud access to a word document on my cell phone. Should I want to access such a document on my cell phone, I'll use one-drive instead.

If you are ready to start backing up your computer you can sign up with BackBlaze and get started, or give us a call and we’ll take care of it for you.

BackBlaze Promo: Remote install of BackBlaze by PC Computer Guy for only $25 (with purchase of 1 year BackBlaze).