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Ibackup Review

I am a big believer in online backups as a part of our backup system. The best one I've found after a lot of research and testing is Ibackup.

Brief Summary:

Why Online Backup?

  • It happens automatically. There are no disks to insert or format. There is nothing to do. You just set it up and then it happens, every day or even every hour.
  • In case of fire or theft your backup remains. Since it is off site, neither fire nor theft can destroy your backup.

Cost:

The basic Ibackup plans, which I use and most of my clients use, costs $10 per Gig per year. Most of my clients find the 10 Gig plan perfect, which costs $99.50 per year (or 9.95 per month). For $199.50 per year or $19.95 per month you can purchase 20 gigabytes of storage. These basic plans maintain this price per gig. Plans with enhanced features and subaccounts cost considerably more.

Why Ibackup?

  • I have been using Ibackup for over 2 years. I have placed a dozen clients into it supporting backups for over 20 computers. It simply works; day in and day out. It doesn't conflict with other software. It doesn't fail to make backups. It doesn't slow down your computer or have  a large overhead.
  • I have tested other products and found this one superior. It works better. It causes less conflicts. It is easier to manage.

In Depth:

Ibackup has advanced features that are very useful for some people:

  • It backs up many open programs. So, while some backup programs are unable to backup Evernotes, or Outlook or Exchange Server while they are being used, and open, Ibackup can.
  • It offers easy access to all your files from the Internet.
  • It allows you to easily share your files from your backup with others in a safe and secure manner.
  • It provides a simple clean efficient online interface to manipulate and check backups.
  • It provides a simple way to access and restore files.
  • Technical support is available if needed. They answer their phones quickly and respond effectively.
  • They mirror their backup server center, so your backup would not be lost even if their data center were destroyed in a fire or earthquake.  They maintain 4 data centers.

Alternatives:

I have used and have clients using both Carbonite and Mozy or MozyPro backups. They are less expensive, less robust options that work pretty well. They seem to cause more conflicts, and have more frequent problems, but they cost less and may work well for you.

The most interesting alternative is one I haven't checked out, but would actually like to try it. Amazon offers a wholesale disk storage option called S3. They just provide the servers and the billing. They don't offer any software, however their prices are very low. Amazon charges a small fee per gigabyte plus a fee for bytes uploaded and another fee for downloading. So they charge for usage. However, even adding it all up, the cost will come to about 25 or 30 percent of the cost of Ibackup (probably even less). You can get 10 gigabytes from Ibackup for $100⁄yr. While you'd pay about $25 to $30 per year from Amazon's S3. But, there is no real support and no software.

Grabbing the opportunity is a company called Jungledisk with backup software that works with S3 and also a service offering improvements. They have placed their own servers in Amazon's data centers so they can offer block level backup instead of full file backup. This makes much more sense for large backup stores. Their software costs $20 and the extra service (called Jungle Disk Plus) costs $1⁄month. I have heard excellent reports on JungleDisk, and if someone has very large backups, ranging in the 100 gig range or above, then the savings available from this option add up, particularly if the backups, once uploaded, didn't continue to have a lot of traffic so most of the charges would be storage only. I would expect someone with a 100 Gigabyte backup  to save about $700⁄yr using this option.



Date: July 2008


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