Do You Have a Data Backup Crash Plan?

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I have reviewed online backup services before, but I never bit the bullet and signed up for any of them. I didn’t want to pay to access my data, and I didn’t like not knowing where exactly the “remote location” is that stores my data. Today I received an email about another service, which gave me a Review Account.

Crash Plan appears to have taken all the good elements of other online backup services, and rolled them into one. For a $20.00 one time fee, you get the software that will allow you to remotely backup 50Gb of data. Yes… I said 50. There are bigger plans, for more money… as well as a monthly subscription service.

The cool thing is that this is completely cross platform. You can backup the data from your Windows machine to your Mac. You can backup the Mac data to your Linux box. You can take the… you get the picture. To me, that alone is worth the $20.00. To be able to backup each of my systems onto each other is just amazing, and the way to go. Of course, you also go the route of remote backup, which can give you peace of mind if you have important data that would be devastating to lose in a catastrophic situation such as a fire, flood, tornado, or any act of nature.

Let’s look at a few of the features of Crash Plan:

  • No buttons to push or CDs to burn. Simply install CrashPlan and it quietly runs in the background protecting your files without slowing you down.
  • With CrashPlan and your own destination, there are no fees or extra charges like other off-site backup products and no limits on how much you can back up.
  • Your files are encrypted, off-site and at multiple destinations of your choosing. Only off-site backup protects your files from theft, fire, and other local disasters. CrashPlan insures your privacy by encrypting your files before they are sent, keeping personal files personal
  • CrashPlan gives you freedom in choosing your backup destinations. Back up your new Mac to your old PC, your laptop to a friend’s desktop, whichever you want. Worried about using too much space on a friend’s computer? No problem! CrashPlan will use an attached USB drive to hold your files.

Update to add a quote from Martin Perry:

Huge thank you for the recent backup video where you talked about Crash Plan, have been worrying about what to do with backing up my parents Mac Mini I got them for Christmas last year, after OS 10.5 came out was sure I was gonna use Time Machine. Until I saw your show!

Had tried out other online backup services before like Mozy but like you never felt totally comfortable storing mine and others data like that, so when I saw Crash Plan and saw I could just get their machine to backup to mine where I happen to be, awesome just awesome!

If you hadn’t seen what I think is the coolest feature, and one of my big gripes with other online backup services, that you can be backing up your friends/familys machines over the web to yours and/or you to them but when something happens and you need your data back pulling it from your standard online backup service will take forever. Crash Plan will let you just take your PC/Laptop over to their house/office, get LAN access to their machine where the data is and will pull the data
back over the LAN from their machine, getting your data back in minutes rather than potentially days from other online services!

What other backup programs or services do you know of or use? Are you happy with them? Have you come across any horrible ones? Leave me a comment to this video, or send an email to me at [email protected] and let me know about your backup experiences.

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18 thoughts on “Do You Have a Data Backup Crash Plan?”

  1. why pay when you can just use an old computer as a server. i have mine which will get automated backups from windows and i can also access the data over the internet.

  2. hey chris, adore your show! I use crashplan and love it too….um…one thing tho’…I think if you backup to your own computer the storage is unlimited, not 50GB…keep up the great work.

  3. CrashPlan sounds like an interesting service, thanks for drawing it to my attention. Personally, though, I think I prefer the security of a dedicated offsite backup service. The one I have been using is Angel Backup ( It doesn’t cost much, and you can access your data whenever you like using their web interface.

  4. I checked into this after seeing it here. The one time cost comes from the software. There is CrashPlan and CrashPlan Pro. Once the software is installed on your PC you want to back up you have multiple options.

    a) Backup to their Data Center for $5 a month for 50GB and $0.10 per additional GB.
    b) Install the software on another Windows, Mac, or Linux computer using the same signin account, then choose it as a backup destination.
    c) Invite a friend, down the street or across the country to be your backup buddy.
    d) A combination of any or all of the above.

    CrashPlan compresses and encrypts your data before sending to it’s destination. So it is safe from prying eyes once it is there and in transit. Your data is easily recoverable using the application and I believe also the website once you have purchased the app. I am still checking it out during my trial period. This appears to be a very safe, flexible, easy, and automatic way to back up your important data.

  5. With the market and the competition we are facing in the current scenario the most valuable thing that provides a cutting edge from one to other is the data. We cannot mistake to take the issues concerned with data backup in any short of lose priority.

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