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Backblaze

A Full Review of Backblaze, an Online Backup Service

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© Backblaze, Inc.

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Backblaze is currently my favorite online backup service and also tops my list of unlimited online backup plans. While there are plenty of individual things to love about Backblaze, it's what those things have in common that makes Backblaze so great: they're all simple!

Keep reading for a detailed look at the Backblaze online backup service, including updated pricing and feature information, plus my experience backing up and restoring with them.

Backblaze Plans & Costs

Updated August 2014

Backblaze offers just one online backup plan. Most online backup services offer at least two plans, some offer dozens, but Backblaze's strategy keeps the decision process really easy.

Backblaze lets you backup an unlimited amount of data from a single computer with no restriction on individual file type or size.

Here's how their pricing works out: Month to Month: $5.00 /month; 1 Year: $50.00 ($4.17 /month); 2 Years: $95.00 ($3.96 /month).

As you can see, you can can get substantial discounts on Backblaze's service when you prepay for one or two years at signup.

Backblaze is one of the least expensive unlimited online backup plans among those I've reviewed, but see my Unlimited Online Backup Plan Prices comparison table to see by how much.

Backblaze also offers a similar business-class online backup plan, which you can read about in my Business Online Backup list.

You can try Backblaze's unlimited online backup free for 15 days before having to commit to a monthly or yearly plan. However, they do not offer a 100% free online backup plan like some other backup services do. See my List of Free Online Backup Plans if that's something you might be interested in.

Backblaze Features

Backblaze, like all online backup services, backs up existing data automatically when it's changed, as well as new data when added to a location you've chosen to back up.

This means that every piece of important data you have is kept backed up to Backblaze's servers without any action on your part, after the initial setup, of course.

Past these very basic online backup features, you'll get the following with your Backblaze unlimited backup plan:

Backup Software Support: Windows (8, 7, Vista, XP) & Mac OS X
Native 64-bit Software: Yes
Mobile Apps: iOS (Android coming soon)
File Access: Web app, iOS mobile app
Backup Options: Desktop software
Restore Options: Desktop software, web & mobile apps, flash/hard drive via FedEx
Multiple Computer Backup per Account: Yes, when paid for
Refer-A-Friend Program: Yes, 1 month free per friend sign up
Transfer Encryption: 256-bit
Storage Encryption: 128-bit AES (key stored with 2048-bit RSA)
Additional Encryption Option: Yes, private encryption key
Multiple Backup Destination Option: No
File Versioning: Yes (30 days)
Idle Backup Option: Yes
Locked/Open File Support: No
Multi-Device Syncing: No
File Sharing: No
Integrated Player/Viewer: No
Backup From Mapped/Network Drive: No
Backup From Attached Drive: Yes
Backup Frequency: Continuous
File Selection: All data backed up (uses exclusions to deselect)
File Exclusion: Drives, folders, and files of defined types
Bandwidth Control: Yes (Advanced)
Backup Status & Alerts: Email
File Size Limits: No
File Type Limits: No
Bandwidth Throttling: No
Fair Use Limits/"Small Print": None
Support Options: Email, FAQ

Backblaze utilizes two data centers, both in the United States. One is in Oakland, CA, and the other just outside Sacramento, CA.

My Experience With Backblaze

I'm a huge fan of Backblaze. If you're having a tough time deciding between Backblaze and another service, just stop where you're at and pick Backblaze. You won't be sorry.

Why do I love Backblaze so much? It's simple. Everything about Backblaze is easy, including  pricing, software setup, configuration, file restoration, you name it.

Read on for more about what I like about Backblaze, and a few things that I don't:

What I Like:

Backblaze isn't messing around with their pricing. I find it quite amazing that, for just $95, you can get a 2-year insurance plan for every bit of the most valuable stuff you own - your information. Some online backup plans from other services run two or three times that much.

I almost didn't mention price first, considering that it's Backblaze's incredible simplicity that has won me over more than anything.

There's only one plan to choose, and it offers unlimited online backup space. One [really good] choice takes all the guesswork out of which size of plan to choose. The software is quick to download and install, and requires that you know next-to-nothing about where your data is at or what's important.

That's not to say that there aren't options if you need them, but they're out of the way and not required. I love that.

Not only is Backblaze easy, I've also found it to be very fast. Backing up online can be slow, especially that initial chunk of data, but I was able to upload almost 300 GB in just three days, a feat that I haven't been able to duplicate with any other online backup service.

True, the quality of my experience no doubt has a lot to do with whatever bandwidth was available to me over those days, but that's been the case with my tests with other services as well and Backblaze "blazed" (pardon the pun) past them in this regard.

What I Don't Like:

While I'd love to say that everything about Backblaze is rainbows and unicorns, there are a few things that I wish were different.

I do wish versioning was unlimited, meaning that I wish Backblaze had the ability to keep old versions of files forever, instead of just for 30 days. This is a feature that some of my other top online backup picks do have and you should look closer at them if this is important to you. I'm told this may be an option feature in the future, albeit for an added cost.

An Android app is something else Backblaze really needs to develop but I expect to see that soon.

Conclusion:

For what it's worth, I use Backblaze for online backup at home. No, they didn't pay me to say that or give me the service for free. See What Online Backup Service Do YOU Use, Tim? for more on that.

I highly recommend that you choose Backblaze for your needs at home, too. It's fast, easy to use, and is easy to forget about. And that's a good thing!

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