Best Cloud Storage & Backup: Crashplan vs Backblaze vs Carbonite vs iDrive vs Dropbox vs Box vs Acronis & More

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Working on a big project and afraid you could lose all your hard work? We’ve all been there. You’ve spent hours upon hours on a crucial presentation, report or proposal; your computer crashes and you lose everything — all because you only saved your files on your computer’s hard drive. Even worse, ALL other files on your hard drive were wiped out as well.

If you’re not backing up your files elsewhere, you’re putting yourself at a huge risk. So, what’s the best way to back up computers? Keep reading to find out the different (and easiest) ways you can store your files outside of your computer’s hard drive. Our experts review a whopping 25 online back up providers!

Article Overview

What Is Cloud Storage?

What is Cloud Storage?

If you’re looking for an easy, inexpensive place to store your files, cloud storage is an excellent option. But what exactly is cloud storage? Think of cloud storage as, well, a virtual space (like a cloud) that’s grounded by remote servers that keep your files and data safe and secure. It’s like having a bank security box, without the need to physically go anywhere to access your safe. The following video does a great job at illustrating cloud storage.

Cloud Storage vs External Hard Drive

What’s the difference between storing your files in “the cloud” versus using an external hard drive? An external hard drive is a separate device that you hook up to your computer to store all your files. The main difference? You have the external hard drive physically in your hands, whereas the cloud is virtual. An external hard drive is more of an old-school approach to backing up your files, but some people prefer to have their files in their possession. With an external hard drive, however, you still run the risk of it getting lost, damaged or dying entirely. And you must have the hard drive with you to access your files, unlike the cloud where you can get to your files from any device or location.

Although considered the new trend by some, the cloud has proven itself safe and secure.

According to Fortune magazine, an estimated 800 million people are using the top three cloud storage services to store their precious data1.

Still, with the quirkiness of technology, it’s probably a good idea to use both the cloud and an external hard drive, especially if you have irreplaceable data like family photos and other records. Using both methods gives you two completely separate backup plans if your computer crashes.

Why Do You Need Online Backup?

Whether it’s your company’s logos and photos, or more important corporate data such as accounting records and file archives, cloud storage services are often seen as a disaster proof way to store your data.

Rarely do we stop to think about what would happen to our data if something happened to our hardware like one of the following:

  • Technological disasters occur all the time, floods, fires and tornadoes rip apart offices and leave no discernible trace of technology behind.
  • Thieves can break into your office and steal laptops, personal computers, hard drives and servers (or employees can misplace laptops while traveling).
  • Disgruntled ex-employees can open and alter or destroy files.
  • Viruses can completely wipe out every trace of data you have.

Who Needs Online Backup?

From a small business of one to larger corporations with 100’s of employees, online backup benefits a wide-range of people and their precious data. Here are a few examples of who might benefit from it.

  • Non-Profit Organization – to have the ability to host and share files
  • Photographers– to safely have a place to organize high-res images
  • Lawyers – to store contracts and access documents on the go

Even if your company isn’t technology-based, there are ways you can utilize this service on a daily basis. Why should it be a high priority for you?

Cloud storage services are designed as a way for you to store your data without having to worry about what happens if your hardware is lost or destroyed.

How Cloud Storage Services Disaster Proof Your Data

Cloud storage services give you the opportunity to take all of your important data and store it in a secondary location, away from your hardware. Your data is stored at off-site server locations so that even if your computer hardware is stolen or completely destroyed, you can still access your data on the off site server.

How To Choose A Cloud Storage Provider?

Since the introduction of “cloud computing” a great number of cloud storage services have surfaced and it can be particularly difficult to decide which service offers the best service for you.

Depending upon your needs, you may find one service to suit your needs perfectly for personal data and yet a different service for corporate data. There are a number of things to look for:

  • Your budget
  • Your space allowance versus how much space you need
  • Whether the system is compatible with a Windows, Linux or Mac
  • Whether it offers file synchronization
  • Whether it allows for person to person sharing
  • How many devices it covers
  • The maximum per file size of data
  • Whether the service offers a free trial
  • Whether the service offers external hard drive support

Best Cloud Storage/ Online Backup Winners (Overall)

Below are our picks for the best cloud storage (online backup) services. We list the pros and cons for each as well as pricing for all plans available.

SugarSync Review

#1

Visit Website

SugarSync is our top pick, standing out because it syncs across all mobile devices and also have live, around the clock automatic backup. They keep all your devices synced (mobile phones, laptops, tablets), and also offer real-time, 24/7 backup with no interruptions or scheduling needed.

It is a seamless backup program and even keeps the five most recent versions of all files just in case you save the wrong version by accident. The one pitfall is that SugarSync does not have a support phone number to call. The good news is that there are very few complaints about this service, so there is a good chance you would never even need customer support.

Chances are good that you will be able to sign-up and start running with this program with no issues right away.

Pros

Cons

  • Backup and sync any folder on your compute
  • Real-time upload of changes
  • Supports all mobile devices
  • No Linux support

SugarSync Pricing

  • Free 30 day trial – Try it today
  • 100 GB: $7.49/month or $74.99 yearly
  • 250 GB: $9.99/month or $99.99 yearly
  • 500 GB: $18.95/month or $249.99 yearly
  • Business 1000 GB: $55.00/month or $550 yearly
  • Custom plans also available for businesses for 10+ users

SugarSync Coupon Code

At this time we are unaware of any SugarSync coupon codes.

Read our Full SugarSync Review

SpiderOak Review

#2

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SpiderOak (they call their newest release SpiderOakONE) is our pick for #2 best online backup service because they only bill you for the amount of storage you use for backing up, synchronizing and sharing.

This is a great option for many people, especially those that are new to online backup and want to see how much space they will actually need. Just like SugarSync, Spider Oak will keep older versions of all your files while also providing safety in the way of file encryption.

The primary downside is that the increased file security creates a bit more of a drain on your computer’s memory use and thus you may see a slight slow down in machine speed. However, their enhanced security measures paired with high customer service reviews give them an edge over many of the competitors.

Pros

Cons

  • Compatible with Windows, Mac and Linux
  • Zero-knowledge encryption
  • De-Duplication feature
  • Claims to be 10-15 times faster than traditional backups
  • Deleted file and historical version storage
  • Good encryption
  • Does not provide a hard copy backup service
  • One downside to the Zero-knowledge encryption is a drain on CPU and memory usage

SpiderOak One Backup Plans & Pricing

  • 21 day trial (up to 250 GB)
  • 150 GB $6/month or $69 yearly
  • 400 GB $11/month or $115 yearly
  • 2 TB $14/month or $149 yearly (best value)
  • 5 TB $29/month or $320 yearly

Read our full SpiderOak Review

Dropbox Review

#3

Visit Website

Dropbox is our #3 pick. They are one of the most widely used services out there (millions of businesses, and millions more individuals). It’s pretty basic so not the most ideal for business purposes, but it’s super easy to use and clean interface makes it a popular service for personal online backup.

Like many of the other services, you get a free account for a limited amount of storage but you can upgrade to a pro account if you need more space. But, unlike others that have tiered pricing, for Dropbox it’s all or nothing making them lower in our rankings.

They also have limited customer service (via ticketing system and 24 hour response time). However, Dropbox uses Amazon’s S3 servers which is the most secure option available. They’re a great pick for anyone who is looking for a simple, no frills and no strings attached service.

Pros

Cons

  • Free for individual users up to 2 GB
  • Secured by Amazon S3 data centers
  • Designed with mobile users in mind. Apps for iOS, Blackberry and Android devices
  • Supports Windows XP, Vista, Mac OS and Linux
  • Online chat support and 24/7 phone support
  • Automatic backups once the file has been manually saved to Dropbox, file sharing, and file versioning
  • Microsoft Office online editing feature
  • Post comments to files, type @ followed by their name or email
  • High costs for large teams
  • Automatic withdrawal only
  • Low overall storage space (free program starts at 2 GB with free upgrades for referral)

Dropbox Pricing

  • Dropbox Basic – 2 GB free for individual users. More storage operates on sliding scale based on incentives like linking to social media accounts and new referrals
  • Professional (for individuals): $16.58/month per user for standard plan (3 TB)
  • For teams
    • Standard – $12.50/ user/ month (5 TB)
    • Advanced – $20/ user/ month (Unlimited)
    • Enterprise – $12.50/ user/ month (Contact Dropbox)

Category Winners

In addition to our top three overall winners, our experts have singled out “best for” category winners that may meet your specific needs:

  1. Personal Use
  2. Business
  3. Cloud Storage

Best Cloud Storage For Personal Use: DropBox Review

DropBox cloud storage logoVisit Website

Dropbox is our winner for best cloud storage for personal use. It is best suited for those who only need to sync and share smaller files. With a sleek and simple user interface and drag-and-drop features,

Dropbox is easy for novices and has all the tools more advanced users need: file-syncing with any device, photo backup from your mobile phone, file sharing and more. Drop Box gives you 2 GB of free space, but for more space, it can get expensive compared to other top services. We use Dropbox and think it’s one of the best online storage companies.

Pros

Cons

  • Strong 256-bit encryption while you’re uploading and storing files
  • Continuous backup
  • You can password-protect your files and folders
  • Keeps file version history for 30 days with Pro Plan; Unlimited with higher plans
  • Data stored on multiple servers in different geographic locations to protect from disaster
  • Supports Windows, Mac, Linux, Android, iOS, Blackberry and Kindle Fire
  • Easy to share folders or files with others (especially useful for photos)
  • You can sync both a personal and business Dropbox account on your computer
  • Universal 2nd Factor for additional security
  • Only 2GB of space with free plan, less than many other services
  • Customer support only available via email for Pro Plan
  • Business plans can get expensive
  • Files uploaded on Dropbox.com limited to 20 GB file size (unlimited via desktop and mobile apps)

Pricing

You can save 17% off monthly prices by clicking here, signing up, and paying annually. Free 14-day trial.

Free Plan

  • Free
  • 2 GB storage space

Individual Plus Plan

  • $9.99 per month
  • 2 TB (200,000 GB) storage space

Individual Professional Plan

  • $16.58 per user per month
  • 3TB (300,000 GB) storage space

Team Standard

  • $12.50 per user per month
  • 3TB (300,000 GB) storage space

Team Advanced

  • $20 per user per month
  • Unlimited storage space

Best Cloud Storage For Business: Hightail Review

Hightail cloud storage logoVisit Website

Hightail, formerly YouSendIt, is an excellent choice for small, medium and even enterprise-level businesses. Their strengths lie in their file-sharing and digital workspace capabilities, unlimited storage and bandwidth and the ability to store and share large files easily. Hightail has even bumped up their file size limits since our last review!

You can transmit sensitive files thanks to their advanced encryption levels, and we love their e-signature feature that makes signing and sending important documents a breeze. Hightail has several pricing plans.

Pros

Cons

  • Ability to store and transmit large files quickly
  • Advanced encryption while uploading, sharing and storing files
  • Digital workspace lets you have shared folders, automatic syncing, comments stored
  • e-signatures: sign documents on your mobile or desktop app
  • MS Outlook plug-in directly emails files from app
  • Ability to set auto clean-out of files
  • File tracking and receipts of downloads
  • ID verification and password protection
  • Good customer support with live chat, phone, ticket options (paid versions)
  • 256-bit encryption
  • Expensive
  • Some user complaints about upload times being slower than Dropbox with free plan
  • Customer support via ticket only with free plan
  • No weekend customer support

Pricing

HighTail offers a 14-day free trial.

Lite Plan

  • Free
  • 2 GB storage
  • 100 MB file size upload limit

Pro Plan

  • $12 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Unlimited storage
  • 25 GB file size upload limit
  • Additional features

Teams Plan

  • $24 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Unlimited storage
  • 50 GB file size upload limit
  • Additional features

Business Plan

  • $36 per user per month (billed annually)
  • Unlimited storage
  • 100 GB file size upload limit
  • Additional features

Best Free Cloud Storage Service: Box Review

Box cloud storage logoVisit Website

Cloud storage service Box gives you an impressive 10 GB of space for free. Couple that with their extensive file sharing and syncing capabilities, and you’ve got a lot to work with for a free service. Geared more toward professionals than personal use, Box has great features to offer in its paid versions.

These pricing plans, however, get expensive quickly for less storage space than other high-end plans offer. Box’s free version is a solid option given its good reputation and storage space.

Pros

Cons

  • Generous free 10 GB of space
  • Excellent sync and sharing capabilities
  • Easy drag-and-drop file storage features
  • Supports Windows, Mac, Android, iOS and Blackberry
  • Supports comments on files through mobile devices
  • 256-bit encryption
  • Good customer support via phone and email, even with free plan
  • Can’t archive file versions with free plan
  • No file locking or permission features with free plan
  • Additional monthly fee for 24/7 tech support

Pricing

Personal Plan

  • Free
  • 1 user
  • 10 GB storage
  • 250 MB file size upload limit
  • Option to upgrade for $10 per month: 100 GB storage; 5 GB file upload

Starter Plan

  • $5 per user per month
  • 3-10 users
  • 100 GB storage
  • 2 GB file size upload limit

Business Plan

  • $15 per user per month
  • Minimum of 3 users
  • Unlimited storage
  • 5 GB file size upload limit

Enterprise Plan

Comparison Table

Our comprehensive comparison table compares pricing, storage, and device options for each cloud storage provider.

 Winner: SugarSyncRunner-Up: SpiderOakThird-Place: DropboxAcronisADriveASUS Web StorageBackblazeBackUp SolutionsBarracuda BackupCarboniteCrashplanDolly DriveElephant DriveFiles AnywhereiBackupiDriveJustCloudLivedriveMiMediaMozyMyPCBackupOpenDrivePennyBackupSOS Online BackupSymantec (Norton)
Visit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit WebsiteVisit Website
Base Pricing$7.49/mo$5/mo$9.99/mo$29.99/mo$2.50/moFree$5.00/mo$99.95/yr$1199/yr$59.99/yr Per PC$5.99/mo$5.00/mo$9.95/mo$4.99/mo$9.95/mo$44.62/yr$10.69/mo$8.00/mo$7.99/mo$5.99/mo$8.69/mo$5/mo$0.89/mo$4.99/mo$69.99/yr
Basic Storage Space100 GB100 GB1,000 GB50 GB100 GB5 GBUnlimitedUnlimited500 GBUnlimitedUnlimited500 GB1,000 GB20 GB10 GB1 TB75 GB1 Computer Only500 GB50 GB75 GB500 GBPer 1 GB50 GB1 Device
Available for WindowsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Available for MacCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkiPhone AppCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Initial CostNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneHardware starts at $999NoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNone$24.95 License FeeNoneNoneNoneNone
File Size LimitNoneNoneNoneUnknown16 GB On Free Basic Edition500 MB / 1 GB / 2 GB / 10 GBNoneUnknownNone4 GBNoneNone15 GBNone9999 GBNoneVariesNone1 GB / 3 GBNone1 GB / 5 GBUnlimitedNoneNoneNone
Free Trial90 Days2 GB2 GB30 Days60 Days5 GB15 DaysNoneNone15 Days30 Days10 GB30 Days1 GB15 Days5 GB2 GB2 Weeks10 GB2 GBFree Cloud Backup5 GB30 Days15 DaysNone
CommitmentNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNone / 1 Year / 2 YearsNone1 YearNone1 Year1 YearNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNoneNone1 Year / 2 Years2 YearsNoneNoneNone1 Year
Automatic BackupsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Incremental BackupsCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Resumes After InterruptionCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Supports File VersioningCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Archive FolderCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
SchedulerCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Mobile Phone AccessCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
SSL Secure TransferCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Encrypted StorageCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Internet Accessible Without DownloadCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Restore / Sync to Second ComputerCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmarkCheckmark
Winner: SugarSyncRunner-Up: SpiderOakThird-Place: DropboxAcronisADriveASUS Web StorageBackblazeBackUp SolutionsBarracuda BackupCarboniteCrashplanDolly DriveElephant DriveFiles AnywhereiBackupiDriveJustCloudLivedriveMiMediaMozyMyPCBackupOpenDrivePennyBackupSOS Online BackupSymantec (Norton)

More Cloud Storage/ Online Backup Provider Reviews (Alphabetical)

Based on reader demand, our researchers have also reviewed the following cloud storage providers. Don’t see yours? Ask us in the comments.

No longer in business:

  • Skadoit!
  • ZumoDrive

Acronis True Image Home Review

AcronisVisit Website

Acronis True Image Home is a Windows-based service that can recover every piece of data on your entire system.

Pros

Cons

  • Create copies of your hard drives while continuing to work
  • Synchronize files between friends, folders, PCs and online
  • Backup to multiple destinations
  • Try&Decide feature creates an isolated environment to test new applications
  • Often crashes while networking
  • 1 year commitment

Pricing

  • 1 Personal Computer License: $29.99/year for standard plan (up to 50 GB) $99.99/year for up to 1 TB
  • 3 Personal Computers License: $69.99/year for standard plan (up to 50 GB) $149.99/year for up to 1 TB
  • 5 Personal Computers License: $79.99/year for standard plan (up to 50 GB) $159.99/year for up to 1 TB
  • Business Plans also available

ADrive Review

ADrive logoVisit Website

ADrive is another backup service boasting superior security and storage space. There is also a digital editing feature called “Zoho” that allows you to upload a file and make necessary changes without having to go back and re-upload a newer version of the file.

Beyond that, however, there is little to impress in ADrive’s functionality and feature list. ADrive has recently expanded its services to offer a free plan and customer service for paid subscribers.

Pros

Cons

  • Low costs for basic plans
  • Tons of available storage space
  • Integrated file editing software
  • High security
  • 60 Day free trial
  • Limited upload availability
  • No automatic backups
  • Very basic interface feature list
  • Limited customer service and support
  • Slow upload speeds

ADrive Pricing

  • Personal (100GB to 20TB): starts at $2.50/month or $25 yearly
  • Business (200GB to unlimited): starts at $7/month or $70/yearly

Asus WebStorage Review

Asus WebStorage logoVisit Website

Asus WebStorage excels as a cloud storage space options to keep your files, photos and videos safe.

Pros

Cons

  • Access your cloud storage on all devices for no extra fee
  • Keyword scans provides easy searching
  • One year commitment
  • OPT Password required
  • Limited customer service

Asus Pricing

  • 5 GB: free
  • 200 GB: $29.99 per year
  • 2 TB: $99.99 per year
  • 4 TB: $419.99 per year

Backblaze Review

Backblaze logoVisit Website

Back blaze is a newer entry into the field but is gaining traction rapidly. They just released Backblaze 2.0, which has some of the better features we’ve seen in online backup software.

Backblaze gives you the ability to back up just about every type of file, including large ISO (DVD backup) images, and entire virtual operating system backups (VMWare, parallels, and other virtual machines).

Pros

Cons

  • Compatible with Windows and Mac
  • Good encryption that can be adjusted on a per-user basis.
  • Unlimited space and bandwidth plans available.
  • Auto detects file changes
  • Allows for restoration to physical media
  • Servers located within United States
  • No file size limit (this is great for large HD movie files, etc.)
  • Offers external hard drive support. You can also restore files to a 1 TB external drive
  • Includes a real-time bandwidth speed test that lets you see just how fast files are being transferred
  • Includes a silent mode that lets you backup “on click only”, thereby freeing up system resources (i.e. Backblaze won’t use resources while in silent mode – this is perfect for performing resource intensive tasks such as video rendering and gaming. You can always switch back out of silent mode when you’re done).
  • Not compatible with Linux
  • No person to person file sharing
  • No synchronization feature

Backblaze Pricing

  • Personal (unlimited): $5 per month or $50 yearly
  • Business: $5 per month per person/TB or $50 yearly per computer

Backup Solutions Review

Backup Solutions logoVisit Website

Backup Solutions is an online backup service designed more for businesses than home users. It offers good security, but is a pricey option when compared to its competition.

Uploading and downloading files are easy to do, but there aren’t many impressive administrative tools or other features that allow Backup Solutions to really stand out.

Pros

Cons

  • Quick uploading and downloading speeds
  • Low bandwidth so your computer won’t slow down
  • Easy interface to navigate
  • Free 24/7 chat and email support
  • No mobile features
  • Additional costs for each computer you use to access your files
  • Very plain and basic interface
  • Few administrative options for users
  • High prices for individual users, especially if using multiple computers

Backup Solutions Pricing

  • Unlimited: $99.95/year per computer
  • $0.40/GB per month for server backup

Barracuda Review

Barracuda logoVisit Website

Barracuda is an integrated local and offsite data backup best suited for businesses due to the strong feature set paired with the accompanied high startup cost.

Pros

Cons

  • Automatic backups
  • Microsoft Exchange support
  • Multiple layers of encryption for super secure data storage
  • Covers a wide range of industry-specific regulations
  • One local backup and two offsite backups
  • Large initial cost
  • No monthly plan

Barracuda Pricing

  • Varies greatly: The entry-level backup service starts at $1199.00/year including hardware

Carbonite Review

Carbonite logoVisit Website

Carbonate is a publicly traded company with a market cap exceeding $200 million. This means they have a lot of money to spend on marketing (i.e. you’ve probably heard of them). Carbonite offers a solid product, but like everything, it has its cons. Carbonite offers customers 5% off 2 year subscriptions and 10% off 3 year subscriptions.

Pros

Cons

  • Compatible with Windows and Mac
  • Strong encryption
  • Unlimited space for individual (home) plans
  • Servers are located within the United States
  • Data can be restored on physical media
  • Free trial
  • Not compatible with Linux
  • Limited storage space for businesses
  • Limited bandwidth (transfer) allowance
  • File size limit of 4 GB/ file
  • Only supports one external drive

Carbonite Pricing

  • Personal Basic: $59.99/year per Mac/PC (unlimited)
  • Personal Plus: $99.99/year per PC unlimited (external hard drive backup & mirror image backup)
  • Personal Prime: $149.99/year per PC unlimited (courier recovery service & automatic video backup)
  • Business Pro Basic (250 GB computer only): $269.99/year
  • Business Pro Prime (500 GB computer only): $599.99/year
  • Business Server Essentials (500 GB server only): $899/year
  • Business Server Advanced (500 GB server only): $1,199/year
  • Business Pro Bundle (Server and Computer Backup): $1,299.99/year for 500 GB

In Depth Carbonite Review

Visit our in-depth Carbonite Review.

Crashplan Review

Crashplan logoVisit Website

Crash plan is an online backup service that backs up your data automatically and encrypts all data. Crashplan has no individual file size limits.

Pros

Cons

  • Supports Windows, Mac and Linux
  • No limit to individual file size
  • Good Android and iOS apps for remote access to files
  • Unlimited data storage
  • 30 day free trial (no credit card required)
  • Tricky user interface

Crashplan Pricing

  • Individual (1 computer): $5.99/month or $59.99 yearly for unlimited
  • Family (2-10 computers): $13.99/month or $149.99 yearly for unlimited
  • Business: $10/month per user

Dolly Drive Review

Dolly Drive logoVisit Website

Dolly Drive is a Mac-only program designed to work with Apple’s Time Machine.

Pros

Cons

  • Works seamlessly with Time Machine
  • Data encryption for high security
  • Many different size/price plans, allows for customization to meet your unique needs
  • Free Trial
  • Initial backups are slow
  • Runs on Macintosh iOS (Apple) only

Dolly Drive Pricing

  • 14 day trial for personal plans
  • Personal starting at $5.00/month or $50/year for for 500 GB (unlimited devices)
  • Small Business $300/year for 500 GB, $600/year for 2 TB (unlimited devices)

ElephantDrive Review

ElephantDrive logoVisit Website

Elephant Drive offers a user-friendly experience with easy drop and drag file capabilities. However, don’t be fooled by the simplicity of the interface, it’s also a strong and secure online backup service.

This system will integrate seamlessly with all your existing computer operations but there are two limitations. They have made some updates and improvements recently by increasing their individual file sharing from 1 GB to 15 GB and now support Linux. ElephantDrive now also runs on Network Attached Systems (NAS) platforms.

Pros

Cons

  • Large data options
  • Simple Interface – just drag and drop files
  • Online ‘Trunk’ stores all deleted files for 30 days
  • Free 30 day trial
  • Must download the desktop client

ElephantDrive Pricing

Our readers can get 1 TB of storage for $9.95/month, be sure to use our link above.

  • Lite: Free for up to 2GB
  • Pro: $9.95 for 1,000 GB
  • Business: $39.95 for 2,000 GB

Files Anywhere Review

Files Anywhere logoVisit Website

Files Anywhere is an online backup service that allows you to access and share your files anywhere, anytime.

Pros

Cons

  • Private site branding for businesses
  • One of the largest pricing selections available for ultimate plan customization
  • Send faxes without charge
  • Let authorized guests upload files, similar to FTP
  • 1 GB free
  • No Linux support

Flies Anywhere Pricing

  • 1 GB: free
  • Personal (20 GB) $4.99/month
  • Personal (40 GB) $9.99/month
  • Personal (80 GB) $19.99/month
  • Personal (100 GB) $24.99/month
  • Personal (200 GB) $48.99/month
  • Personal (Up to 5 TB): $1,200.99/month
  • Business (3 users, 100 GB): $12.00 per user/month

iBackup Review

iBackup logoVisit Website

iBackup is easy to use for novice customers. Support is generally addressed through email, and the rate at which iBackup responds to customer inquiries is reported as slow.

However, the interface is easy to understand and the security is also top-notch. We were not impressed with the pricing, as most plans cost about $1 per GB of storage, which is much higher than many other products.

Pros

Cons

  • Easy to use and strong security features
  • Able to create sub-accounts for other users to access selected files
  • Highly secure
  • 15 day trial (up to 50 GB space)
  • Low overall storage space
  • High priced packages
  • Slow support and customer service
  • No online support or video tutorials

iBackup Pricing

  • 10 GB: $9.95/month or $99.50 yearly
  • 20 GB: $19.95/month or $199.50 yearly
  • 50 GB: $49.95/month or $499.50 yearly
  • 100 GB: $99.95/month or $999.50 yearly
  • 200 GB: $199.95/month or $1999.50 yearly

iDrive Review

iDrive logoVisit Website

iDrive is a great choice for online backup service. We were very impressed with its range of tools and users are able to schedule backups however often they want.

We also like that home users can connect up to 5 personal computers to one account for one low price. The software boasts a clean interface, and there is quality customer support and help via online chat, telephone or email.

Pros

Cons

  • Continuous backup
  • Easy to use and understand for novice users
  • Fantastic customer support
  • Supports external devices hooked up to your computer
  • Lots of administrative tools for users
  • Can use one account for up to 5 computers
  • Decent security features, but not top of the line like many other programs
  • Limited file sharing from account to account
  • No monthly subscriptions (for personal and some business plans)

iDrive Pricing

  • 5 GB: free
  • Personal (1TB): $44.62/year
  • Personal (10 TB): $374.62/year
  • Business (250 GB): $74.62/year
  • Business (500 GB) $149.62/year
  • Business (1.25TB): $49.95/month or $374.62/year
  • Business (2.5TB): $79.95/month or $599.62/year
  • Business (5TB): $149.95/month or $1124.62/year
  • Business (12TB): $$299.95/month or $2249.62/year

Note: all pricing is for first year, then slight increase for subsequent years.

JustCloud Review

JustCloud logoVisit Website

JustCloud is simple and easy to learn and use. With both traditional backup and cloud storage, JustCloud constantly backs up all files chosen by the user. This includes all changes made in the editing processes and new files. Although the amount of space for file syncing is limited, the amount of storage space is not. Just Cloud also has a mobile App.

Pros

Cons

  • Sync folder allows drag and drop feature for simple use and syncing across all devices (and multiple computers)
  • Military grade encryption for great security
  • Simple file and folder sharing
  • Support is lacking

JustCloud Pricing

  • Home/Pro (up to 75 GB): $10.69/month or $98.28/year
  • Premium (up to 250 GB): $11.94/month or $1113.28/year
  • Ultimate (up to 1 TB): $14.44/month or $143.28/year

Livedrive Review

Livedrive logoVisit Website

Livedrive is a cloud backup service that has a plan for everyone. It keeps your files safe and available on every device. With unlimited file storage, this is a good option if you have a lot of photos, videos or other large file size data.

Pros

Cons

  • Unlimited backup
  • Easy interface – just drag and drop files
  • Online ‘Trunk’ stores all deleted files for 30 days
  • Windows 8 App
  • Free two-week trial
  • No Linux support
  • Restrictions between the pricing options can be confusing

Livedrive Pricing

  • Backup (for 1 computer): $8/month
  • Briefcase (for files on all devices, everywhere you go): $16/month
  • Pro Suite (unlimited files for up to 5 computers): $25/month
  • Business Express (up to 2,000 GB and 3 users): $50/month
  • Business Standard (up to 10,000 GB and 10 users): $16-/month

MiMedia Review

MiMedia logoVisit Website

MiMedia is an online backup service that is known for being able to watch and stream your media on demand. Provides an automatic online backup and effortless file sharing. Mi Media also offer 10 GB of storage for free.

Pros

Cons

  • Media playing and viewing online
  • Unlimited devices
  • Vast trial program for up to 10 GB, the largest of all the companies we reviewed
  • No Mac or Linux
  • No file version saving

MiMedia Pricing

  • 10 GB: free (no credit card required)
  • 500 GB: $7.99/month or $85/year
  • 1 TB: $9.99/month or $100/year
  • 2 TB: $15.99/month or $160/year

Mozy Review

Mozy logoVisit Website

Mozy is an online backup and file sync service. It allows you to use any files you like and access them anywhere. The software is offered in two flavors: Home and Pro. With Pro you can even opt to have your own servers backed up and protected.

Pros

Cons

  • Local encryption prior to transfer
  • Data is stored in state-of-the-art data centers
  • Recover file versions up to 30 days in the past
  • Real time support
  • No Linux support
  • Program must be installed on your computer
  • File-sharing is not supported

Mozy Home Pricing

  • 50 GB: $5.99/month (1 computer)
  • 125 GB: $9.99/month (3 computers)

Mozy Pro Pricing

  • 10 GB: $9.99/month (unlimited computers without servers)
  • 50 GB: $19.99/month (unlimited computers without servers)
  • 100 GB: $39.99/month (unlimited computers without servers)
  • 500 GB: $189.99/month (unlimited computers without servers)
  • 1 TB: $379.99/month (unlimited computers without servers)

MyPCBackup Review

MyPCBackupVisit Website

MyPCBackup is a low-cost option that uses Amazon S3 data centers for its backup, which is one of the most heavily monitored stations on the internet. MyPCBackup offers low-price incentives for users to pay for long-term storage upfront.

If you plan on paying month-to-month, their rates climb rapidly. Additionally, while there are business options available, this service is geared toward individual users, and businesses will pay extremely high rates for syncing multiple computers to one network.

Pros

Cons

  • Price breaks available for annual commitment
  • Works across multiple platforms, including Windows 7, Windows Vista, Mac OS 10.5+, Android, iOS and Blackberry
  • Unlimited backup for your files
  • Mobile access supported by most smartphones
  • Data stored on Amazon S3 storage servers, which are some of the most secure on the internet
  • No tech support via phone, only though email
  • Additional features are extra
  • There have been many complaints on billing. Some users reported being charged additional costs and the billing department is sometimes slow to respond and fix the problem.

MyPCBackup Pricing

  • Home/Pro (up to 75 GB): $10.69/month or $98.28/year
  • Premium (up to 250 GB): $11.94/month or $113.28/year
  • Ultimate (up to 1 TB): $14.44/month or $143.28/year

OpenDrive Review

Opendrive logoVisit Website

OpenDrive is an option for users looking for low monthly costs, and there is even a free version you can download, but the storage space for the free plan is very limited.

Available on Windows and Mac systems, OpenDrive offers solid online storage and backup on their own custom servers, which they monitor in-house. There are hidden costs associated with this product, however, if you are looking to sync between multiple users, or use advanced features offered by Open Drive such as hotlinking.

Pros

Cons

  • Unlimited computer access and unlimited direct linking
  • Auto-synchronization and backup so you never have to manually load or worry about your files
  • Custom branding and data management for business accounts
  • Virtual Office Suite for business accounts allows you to create and share documents and spreadsheets without installing additional software
  • Mobile access on Android and iOS
  • Limited storage and daily bandwidth limitations
  • Limited access to sometimes as few as 3 users per month
  • Requires upgrade or ad space on your website if you wish to enable hotlinking
  • Support is difficult to navigate on website

OpenDrive Pricing

  • 5 GB Free
  • Custom Home Plan: Starts at $5.00/month (for 500 GB) or $50.00/year
  • Unlimited Home Plan: unlimited for $9.95/month or $99 yearly
  • Custom Business Plan: Starts at $7.00/month (for 500 GB) or $70.00/year
  • Unlimited Business Plan:  for $29.95/month or $295 yearly

PennyBackup Review

PennyBackup logoVisit Website

PennyBackup compresses all of your files to tiny sizes that allow you to maximize your storage space. Unlike many other programs, there is no installation fee, and you can set up PennyBackup on as many computers as you like at no charge and access your files anywhere.

Pricing at Penny Backup is dependent on how much storage you are actually using. This can become costly if you have an account with multiple users. You are able to negotiate pricing if you plan on uploading lots of data, but we recommend looking elsewhere if you plan on doing so. There is also no availability on mobile devices.

Pros

Cons

  • No licensing fees for users
  • Data is compressed to save your storage space and money
  • 4 levels of security to insure the maximum amount of protection for your files
  • Viewable status window that lets you pause and restart downloads
  • Not available on smartphones or tablets
  • PC only
  • Must download software to be able to view files
  • Limited storage space
  • No file sharing between multiple accounts

PennyBackup Pricing

  • $50 per TB

SOS Online Backup Review

SOS Online Backup logoVisit Website

SOS is an online backup service that claims to be ‘The All-In-One Solution To Secure Your Data’. It is a very fast service and offers a Facebook backup. SOS is one of the more popular online backup choices out there. It was selected 5 years running as the PC Magazine Editor’s Choice for online backup, and is also recommended by The New York Times.

Pros

Cons

  • Simple and fast interface
  • Access backup files on the web
  • Share your backup files online
  • Continuous data backup
  • Facebook backup
  • Unlimited file revisions – edit any version of every file backed up, forever. For example, if you edit a file and save it, there will now be two versions of the file. You can access either version at any time, older file versions are never deleted (unless you choose to delete them).
  • Backup multiple PC’s in a Single Account
  • Three-tiered encryption system
  • Access your backup from iPhone & Blackberry
  • Free 2 week trial
  • Live protection is only available on individual files

SOS Online Backup Pricing

  • 50 GB: $4.99/month or $44.99/year
  • 100 GB: $7.99/month or $79.99/year
  • 150 GB: $9.99/month or $99.99/year
  • 250 GB: $12.99/month or $129.99/year
  • 500 GB: $20.99/month or $199.99/year
  • 1 TB: $39.99/month or $399.99/year
  • 5 TB: $159.99/month or $1,599.99/year
  • 10 TB: $399.99/month or $2,999.99/year

Norton by Symantec Review

Norton logoVisit Website

Symantec by Symantec automatically safeguards your files and documents from loss. It’s a security and backup system in one (and you can’t get one or the other).

Pros

Cons

  • Use on up to 5 computers
  • Saves previous file versions for 90 days
  • Schedule regular backups
  • Only 1 storage option available
  • Must buy entire package, backup only is not available

Norton Pricing

  • Standard: 1 computer: $69.99/year
  • Standard: 5 devices: $89.99/year
  • Standard: 10 devices: $109.99/year

What Are The Odds Of The Cloud Crashing?

It has already been established that just like any other method of data storage, the digital cloud can be compromised, but is there a possibility that the entire digital cloud will ever crash? The general consensus is that the entirety of the digital cloud will never be brought to its knees completely. That said, there is a likelihood for specific sectors of the cloud to be brought down.

Think of the digital cloud as being made up by millions of storage companies, each of these companies is allotted a certain set of storage units. The allotted storage units are located throughout the virtual globe. There is a potential that the company that you rent your storage unit from is going to be broken in to or experience a disaster (flood, fire etc.) that results in damage to or loss of your property being stored. This is exactly why renters have renters insurance, or a back up of their personal data.

The potential that the same disastrous situation is going to happen to every company that owns storage units throughout the entirety of the digital cloud is slim. That is not to say that one significant worldwide event could not wipe out the cloud for good, but in the smaller scheme of things, the chance for complete eradication of the cloud is minute. Considering how much of the world runs on the cloud now, if that ever happens we’ve got bigger problems.

Is It Possible To Back Up My Social Media Data?

Sign with Could you imagine what would happen if one day we woke up and your data on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, or LinkedIn had simply disappeared? What would happen to all your precious memories and photos?

We live in a digital world and we are constantly sharing things. But as privacy concerns become more prevalent and novelty wears off, more people are backing off social media, including Facebook.

But don’t forget to backup your digital life before you jump ship. (Even if you don’t go cold turkey, it’s a good idea to clean up your “social media self” and archive a copy of your files periodically). Our social media experts show you how to backup your social media accounts.

Do you back up your data? If so, what’s your preferred approach?

Sources: [1] Fortune

About The Author:

Sadie has over 15 years of experience in digital marketing, graphic and web design, social media strategy, email marketing and more. She is a 4th generation small business owner and has worked with a wide range of brands from fortune 500 companies to startups and entrepreneurs.

Sadie is a self-proclaimed Apple/Mac guru and keeps up with all the latest tech trends at conferences including South by Southwest. Sadie has a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Texas at Austin's Moody School of Communications and a concentration in Business from the Red McCombs School of Business.

Her expertise has appeared in many notable media outlets, including The New York Times, Forbes, People, Reader's Digest, Apartment Therapy, and other regional news organizations.

Disclaimer: This website contains reviews, opinions and information regarding products and services manufactured or provided by third parties. We are not responsible in any way for such products and services, and nothing contained here should be construed as a guarantee of the functionality, utility, safety or reliability of any product or services reviewed or discussed. Please follow the directions provided by the manufacturer or service provider when using any product or service reviewed or discussed on this website.

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