Sunday, December 21, 2008

Mozy - A Backup Service Reviewed

I was inspired today after I read Dick Eastman's blog article (The link for that article is at the bottom of this blog entry).  I realized that I really needed to look into other ways to back up my genealogy.  So, I figured I would try the website that he recommends: Mozy

You all know that I am a huge fan of backing up your genealogy files - and luckily, I've been able to keep it all to a 2GB thumb drive (I use 2 different thumb drives - one for my genealogy and pictures and one for all of my school stuff).  

So I headed on over to Mozy.com to see what they have to offer.  Since I a poor college student, I immediately began searching for a free offer.  Luckily, they have a free service where you can upload 2GB of information.  This is what I am using and it compliments my 2GB thumb drive system perfectly.

I was surprised to read that for only $4.95 a month you could get unlimited storage.  If you think about it - this is SUPER CHEAP!  In a year that is about $60.  With that $60 you can save yourself a ton of headaches, crying spurts, and hair appointments to cover that new bald spot that you gained from pulled your hair out.  You'll have piece of mind knowing that if tomorrow your computer decides to crash or if a virus gets your computer - all of your important files are safe and sound.  You'll be able to restore everything.

So, the way Mozy works is that you download the program onto your computer.  Then, you just tell it what files you want it to backup, when you want it to backup - and your done.  It is pretty easy to use and very user friendly.  I've never used this service before today, and I figured it out rather easily.

However, (and this is such a small "however"), it will only backup files that are on "fixed" drives. For those of you who don't know what fixed drives are, they are drives that can't be disconnected from your computer (So, your thumb drive is not a fixed drive but your C drive is). This was a very small inconvenience that took only seconds of my time to fix: I simply copied the folders that I wanted onto my desktop - and now I can easily back up all my genealogy files!

Link to Dick Eastman's "Backups: A Testimonial" blog entry: http://blog.eogn.com/eastmans_online_genealogy/2008/12/backups-a-testi.html

Update:
Miriam made a great comment on this blog today.  She said that Carbonite charges only $50 a year.  Plus, Mozy apparently charges you to send a DVD with all of your data on it, should your comptuer ever crash.  Great point Miriam, and thanks for pointing that out!  And as for your question Miriam, I don't believe that Mozy will backup external hard drives.  But please, don't take my word on it since I am just now trying Mozy out.  It might be best to check some of the review sites like CNET to get a better answer.

6 comments:

Miriam said...

Mozy does charge $85 to send you all your info on DVDs if your hard drive crashes.

Carbonite is $50 a year, and you can access your backups anytime. They do not charge for you to download your info if your hard drive crashes.

One thing I'm unsure of: will Mozy's subscription service back up your external drives? Carbonite does not.

Elizabeth said...

I started using Mozy's free service over a year ago, but during the summer I made the jump to the subscription service. I have no problem backing up any of the drives attached to my computer, including my 2 externals.

You do not have to pay to download your backups. I did this by accident one time.

After watching my husband suffer time after time for not backing up his data (and he should know better, as a computer professional), I feel that $59/yr is a small price to pay for piece of mind!

Renee Zamora said...

You can download your data from Mozy to recover your data. It's a slow process to do so, so being able to purchase backup CDs is helpful.

Sean Sexton said...

Good to keep reminding people to back up their data! Folks might be interested in the following articles:

[A scheme for backing up all of your family history data]:

http://sean.famthings.com/2008/08/27/10-essential-steps-to-protecting-your-family-history-data/

[A survey of various online back services]:

http://stuff.seans.com/2008/07/25/windows-backup-products-part-2-%E2%80%93-imaging-synchronization-online/

Sean Sexton said...

Here are clickable links for the blog posts that I mentioned:

Windows Backup Products, Part 2

10 Essential Steps to Protecting Your Family History Data

Anonymous said...

Who cares what Dick "I promote my advertisers" Eastman says. I would not trust him.