Information Technology Reference
In-Depth Information
What about Cloud Storage and Syncing Services?
In earlier editions of this topic, I included several other services
in this list, such as Dropbox , SpiderOak , and SugarSync . Although
these services have much to recommend them—including versioning,
syncing files across multiple devices, and sharing files with others—
I think it's generally unwise to rely on them as backup services. You
can read about my reasoning in the sidebar Dropbox, the Almost-
Backup Service , earlier. I do list many such services in the Online
Appendixes for the sake of completeness, but I distinguish them from
true online backup services like CrashPlan and Backblaze.
If you decide to use one of these services for backups anyway,
examine its features carefully—not all are alike. For example, as
of mid-2013, the popular Carbonite service offers versioned backups
only for Windows users. Therefore, for Mac users, Carbonite is a
nonstarter when it comes to backups.
BYOS (Bring-Your-Own-Software)
Internet Backups
The other category of Internet backup services isn't explicitly designed
for backup at all—it's just storage space that you can use in whatever
way you want. In order to use it for backups, you must supply your
own backup software, and in some cases, additional software that
enables your backup program to mount or otherwise interact with the
storage space.
Although there are numerous services like this, I've chosen just three
as examples:
Amazon S3 and Glacier:'s S3, or Simple Storage
Service , provides virtually limitless—yet modestly priced—online
storage, complete with encrypted transfer. S3 charges separately
for data storage ($0.095 per GB per month for standard storage
or $0.076 per GB per month for reduced redundancy storage),
data transfer ($0.12 per gigabyte downloaded after the first
one), and requests, or operations that affect the data (prices vary
depending on the request type; delete requests are free); prices go
down as volume goes up, and prices in Europe are slightly higher.
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