Living abroad, we’ve been a little irresponsible about backups. We have a portable hard drive, but it’s pretty full, and it’s in the same room as our computers. After reading Anil Dash’s glowing report on the online backup service Mozy, we decided to give it a try.
What a disaster.
I’ll spare you all of the boring details, but their Apple client is in beta, and clearly deserves a downgrade to alpha. Despite a responsive and reasonably helpful support department, I could never get it working on my MacBook. Julie faired a little better, but the client spontaneously stopped working on her MacBook after a few days.
The support dried up a week ago, and today I got a message asking that I call their support line. I’ve already spent way more time than I should need to on troubleshooting the software, so I’m done. I’ve requested a refund.
We paid US $207.90 for unlimited backup of two computers for two years. That seemed like a good deal, so I’m in the market for something at a similar price point and pain-free on the Mac OS. Do you have any suggestions?
.Mac is out, because we have about 200 GB to store, not 10. Plus it would cost almost twice as much. Lastly, we’re not on OS 10.5.
UPDATE: I see I’m not alone in my frustrations with Mozy or the lack of Apple options.
I was considering a TB external drive for about $300-400, but decided to go with Mozy instead. Very happy with it, and at 5 bucks a month, I am saving money (for a few years anyway) and am also avoiding the hassle of potential breakdowns on an external device. I used the Free Mozy for a year and was really impressed with how worry free it is, since I seem to keep more and more stuff on my computer that I would hate to lose, decided to upgrade to the unlimited option.
Sounds like the Mac experience is not so good. Sorry to hear that. Sounds like Mozy really screwed up offering the Mac service
-A very happy Mozy customer
I’m currently using Amazon’s S3 storage service as an offline storage solution running off my Mac via the S3sync utility.
This is a little geekier to setup than alternatives, but is rock solid in every day use.
There is a good tutorial at:
Now, this does clearly fail on the price side of the equation, for 200gb of data you’re looking at about 30 a month for using S3. Which likely doesn’t seem like nearly the same “good deal” that Mozy was offering.
However, this is your data we’re talking about and given the economies of scale involved I’d have to question how a startup was planning on sustaining itself at roughly half the cost of Amazon’s solution.
Have a look at JungleDisk, which also uses Amazon S3.
Ditto for JungleDisk. I use it on the Mac and it works perfectly.
I used to use S3Sync too and that worked fine, but JungleDisk is “nicer”.
I had looked at JungleDisk as well, but opted not to use it because does some weird “optimizations” in it’s naming scheme of S3 buckets and folders that are helpful for its internal operation, but if they ever go away would present a real barrier to using another generic tool.
For example, while I use S3Sync to backup my files, to monitor or retrieve a file I use S3Fox (the S3 Firefox addon that makes S3 look like an FTP site).
Thanks for the recommendations, I’ll check out JungleDisk and plain old S3.
I’m a huge Mozy fan, but I’ve only ever used it with Windows machines. Sorry to hear you had trouble!
I was in the same situation as you, 200GB ish of data, need to backup and could not find a provider cheap enough that fully supports Windows and MAC. I found a company at http://www.onlinedatastore.co.uk who offer a 200GB account for 9.95 per month and supports MAC and Windows. I like this service because they offer a “seed load function” this means you send them your data on a disk and they upload it to their servers and send you the disk back. You then only backup the daily changes, worked well for me. I also understand this can work in reverse should you lose data, I have fortunately not had reason to try this out yet. Finally, I pay them monthly so don’t have to pay for a year upfront.
A tale told all to often. I found backazon.com, little unknown software, its awesome. US based live support and my files are avail for download right after I upload.
Hope all is well
I see this a lot. Each time, at the end of the article, the conclusion is: I am now looking for something that works much better, and STILL COSTS THE SAME. Haven’t we learned from all the website posts about Carbonite and Mozy failures, that cheap backup for $50 won’t actually save you when you need it.
No backup for $50 can do this. IF Mozy and Carbonite can’t do it at that price point, who could?
It’s like saying, that Toyota didn’t live up to the quality of a Lexus. I am now looking for a car as cheap as the Toyota, but the same quality as a Lexus.
Besides, isn’t data backup really the main insurance/safety net for all your data (or maybe even the future of your business?) How is that only worth $50. What do you pay for car insurance? Health insurance? Other business insurance?
Anyway, I’m biased because I have a horse in the game myself. I started our backup company after dealing with so many of these problems as an IT company. (don’t worry, I won’t spam our website everywhere here like all the others do….) The technology required and the personal support required to make a backup company work well simply costs more than $50. The more you read about the business model and advertising strategies of Carbonite and Mozy, the more you see they are a marketing company with a board of directors who need a return on their investment, rather than a tech company for business.
(if I had $20M per month to advertise like Carbonite I wouldn’t have to rant on your blog comment section….sorry for that!)
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