Crowdsourcing: Recommendations for online backup?

by DaniGirl on June 6, 2011 · 5 comments

in Editorial asides

Hey bloggy peeps, I need your advice.

Beloved and I have been discussing online backup of our computers for a while, but haven’t yet got around to it. I happened to say this weekend that I really, really want to get around to this before it’s too late — and today, my 1TB back-up drive with I can’t even tell you how many photos, including a good chunk of my professional work and most of my first 365, stopped working. I’m still holding out faint hope even as I’m sick with the possible loss — but at least it wasn’t *everything*.

At least I have whatever is on the laptop, which is 80% of the digital negatives from the last year or so, and most but not all of my other documents. Silver lining, I suppose. Beloved has downloaded some diagnotic tools, so maybe all is not yet lost.

So anyway, do you do online backups and if so, with what company? I’ve heard good things about Carbonite, and Rogers Online Protection would be an easy choice as we already use them for cable and Internet. We have an HP laptop running Windows, for whatever that’s worth. Any opinions or advice are most welcome, thanks!


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Sally June 6, 2011 at 6:36 pm

We use Carbonite, and it’s completely unobtrusive. We haven’t had a need to retrieve anything after a failure, but we’ve been happy with the service so far.

I’m sorry you lost things! I had a laptop die at about 4 months and still mourn the loss of those 4 months of childhood photos. They’re on typepad in small blog images, but I don’t have the originals anywhere. So sad.

2 Batman June 6, 2011 at 7:09 pm

I was always leery about saving my files out in the wilderness so I set up a NAS (Network Attached Storage) on my home network. I have used a D-Link DNS-323 for the past couple of years. I initially set it up with two 1TB drives but recently upgraded to two 2TB drives. The drives are set up in RAID 1 so if one drive fails (which it hasn’t thank goodness), the other is a complete copy. The biggest risk now is loss of the entire unit (due to theft, fire, etc) similar to if they were hard copy pictures or files.

If you’re going to replace your hard drive rather than go the on-line route, I’d recommend building some redundancy into your storage backups and have two drives that mirror each other.

Good luck with the diagnostics and recovery!

p.s. there are folks out there who can do file recovery. It generally isn’t cheap though.

3 Just An Ottawa Dad June 6, 2011 at 8:02 pm

Had this happen. Used a professional firm to recover. Drop me an email and I’ll provide you more info.

Hold out hope Dani.

4 Sara June 6, 2011 at 9:04 pm

I use Mozy.com for my back up. You can choose what you want to back up and how often and IF something does happen, you can retrieve it very easily.

I had the same problem a few months ago but luckily, I have two drives plus my online back up. I always thought that I was overdoing the backup on two drives along with the online back up but as it turns out it was worth it.

5 Simon MacDonald June 7, 2011 at 8:31 am

Ow, that really sucks. I listen to a podcast called This Week in Tech with Leo Laporte and one of the things they hit you over the head with is that you need three copies of your stuff. One on the laptop, one in an on-site backup and one in an off-site backup.

Since we have a lot of pictures of Anna that my wife would kill me if I lost I implemented this strategy with an external USB drive (on-site) and Carbonite (off-site). Carbonite has been a pretty awesome service and as an added bonus it has an iPhone/iPad app that allows you to get access to pictures, music, etc. over the internet. This means that I’ve actually viewed some of those backed up photos on my iPad that I haven’t looked at in a long time as they are now more easily accessible.

I would have to recommend Carbonite as an off-site backup solution. If you do decide to use Carbonite then enter the coupon code “twit” at checkout and you will get two months free.

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: