Drobo updating boot support partitions
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I’ve also written dozens of articles on backups for publications such as Macworld, Tid BITS, and Mac Tech.
As broadband speeds slowly but surely improve, online backup services are becoming an increasingly smart addition to your overall backup strategy: Pay five bucks a month (give or take), install an app on your computer that runs in the background, and presto!So I used a Unix utility to create files at various specific sizes (including 1 MB and 1 GB) consisting of completely random binary data, turned off other networking services, and fed my test files to each backup app, timing the upload speed.I timed it myself because the throughput measurements and “time remaining” estimates found in certain online backup apps are notoriously misleading, if not entirely inaccurate.After retesting the new versions, we think that Backblaze is the best cloud backup service for most people because of its useful features, good performance, and simple setup.If you need better performance or more flexibility to recover deleted or changed files and can afford to pay a little more, we also like IDrive Online Backup.In addition, because upload speed is such an important consideration when you’re backing up to the cloud, I performed a series of timed tests with specially designed files.
In particular, I wanted to test a worst-case scenario in which files would benefit as little as possible from compression, thus gaining a better idea of how the services’ apps compared in raw throughput.
If you already have your data backed up online, and you’re content with your provider—regardless of whether it’s one of the services I mention here—you should most likely stick with what you have, because reuploading vast quantities of data to the cloud can take a painfully long time.
On the other hand, if your current provider is far more expensive than one of our top picks, or if it lacks specific features you’re dying to have, switching may be worth the hassle.
Finally, I settled on the following three must-have features, which I consider to be essential for any reliable, secure online backup service: All six services offer features that have become de rigueur in online backups, such as delta encoding (that is, after you have uploaded your files initially, future backups upload only the portions of those files that have changed) and encryption.
To pick the best service from those six, I considered ease of use, reliability, performance, and many optional but nice-to-have features.
Online backup services (and you can find loads of them these days) are increasingly commodity services, so picking the best one requires looking beyond the obvious feature of copying files from your computer to the cloud and back again. First, I looked strictly at services that offered a ready-made, easy-to-use combination of backup app and cloud storage.