Data Backup Question

A couple of years ago I bought an external hard drive to store my pictures, music, docs, and other precious files in the unlikely event that my PC crashed.  Unfortunately, it was the external drive that crashed, so now I’m left paranoid on what to do regarding backing up my files.  I’m not interested in burning a plethora of CD’s, so I decided if there were any online options.  I found two companies that look promising and fairly the same, and was wondering if y’all had any thoughts or experience with them.

  • Carbonite – $49.95 / year – 1 Computer – Free 15 Day Trial and it has a cool name
    Carbonite installs a small application on your computer that works quietly in the background looking for new and changed files that need to be backed up. It looks and feels just like part of your computer, and is integrated with your desktop — there’s no new interface for you to learn.
    When your computer is idle, Carbonite automatically backs up your new and changed files. You don’t have to do anything! When you’re using your computer, Carbonite goes to sleep so it will never slow you down or interfere with your Internet connection.
    f you accidentally delete or otherwise lose files, it takes just a few clicks on your desktop to get them back. If your computer is damaged, stolen or “just dies” and you lose all your files, just visit Carbonite’s website from a new computer. Within minutes you’ll be able to begin restoring all your files.
  • ElephantDrive – $49.95 / year – 1 Computer
    ElephantDrive Home Edition plans provide unlimited online storage for your photos, music, video, documents, and all other valuable files you have!  Pre-made categories and our simple wizard make sure that all your important data gets automatically backed up!
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7 Responses to Data Backup Question

  1. Pete says:

    For all the money that you’re sinking into backing up to servers that: you can’t completely trust, and could go away with your info, and are in the cloud you could just buy an array. Buy three or four drives and put them in RAID 5 and put them out in your garage.

  2. mspears says:

    Take a look @ same type of thing you would probably need the business level of service.

  3. Nathan S. says:

    I’m with Pete, an array would be the best way to go.
    The only advantage to having online is if you had a fire or some other physical damage.

  4. Lewis says:

    @ #3 Nathan:

    I can think of one other big advantage to online: remote access. It is certainly nice to be able to get your files while on the road.

    That is actually why I started using one of these services. FWIW – I use ElephantDrive. So far, it’s been effective.

  5. Geeding says:

    All of this array RAID 5 stuff is new to me. Actually, today is the first I’ve ever heard of it. Any suggestions on how to put one together or how to get started?

  6. Alison says:

    Alison from Carbonite here. When it comes to your most valuable files, you can never have too many backup plans. Onsite backup like an array is a great idea, but onsite backups have their downfalls too. A fire, theft, flood, or natural disaster can destroy any array store in your garage just as easily as it can destroy your computer. In fact, I was just reading this blog about some of the recent tornado devastation, where city officials were trying to track down their hard drives after a tornado hit!

    The only thing that can protect your files from these kinds of disasters is online backup (or constantly keeping an up-to-date backup in another zip code). Online backup such as Carbonite backs up your files while you work, so you don’t have to worry about it being up-to-date.

  7. Tammy says:

    Kim Komando has a national radio show all about computers, electronics etc. and she highly recommends carbonite. You can get a lot of great information on her sight and in her newsletter.

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