Over the years I have tried many different backup utilities. Historically I have never found one that included all the features I was looking for. The latest one I have tested is CloudBerry Backup. Overall, it does very well with the features available, usability of those features, ease of use and arguably the most important part–restore capabilities.
Below I have outlined some features I, along with many of my colleagues, look for in a backup system. For each item, examples of related features will be provided through the lens of CloudBerry.
Many backup solutions only allow backing up of local drives. This is very annoying as network storage is becoming increasingly popular, even in home environments. Similarly, many backup solutions only allow backing up of internal/externally attached hard drives.
CloudBerry not only allows you to backup from network paths (UNC), but you can also back files up to the network path as well. Furthermore, CloudBerry is known for its ability to backup to not only one but many different S3 platforms. For testing this product, I chose to do my backups/restores though DreamObjects.
Compression is very important for a couple reasons. First, it speeds up backup, especially when uploading to a destination on the Internet. Second, it saves space. Although hard drive space is not all that expensive any more, it is nice to compress backups so they don’t take up too much space. Third, compression is even more beneficial when you are paying for usage through an S3 service.
CloudBerry offers compression and it seems to do a decent job. I’d like to see more options in this area where a user could select low, medium, or high compression. Currently the only controllable compression setting is on or off.
For me, security is a big deal. With more services turning to the web, malicious hackers are actively hacking even the most trusted services throughout the web. Backing up files to a “secure” location seems to be a thing of the past.
A safe way to ensure files are properly encrypted is to encrypt them yourself. With CloudBerry, that is possible. This is a feature that is simply awesome! You can select your type of encryption, set a password, and even encrypt file names!
Ease of Use
CloudBerry is very user friendly. There are wizards that guide you though configuring both backups and restores. There are two modes users can go through–Simple and Advanced. With simple, there are less options to configure but this makes it easier for general end users. For more geeky users (such as myself) Advanced is the way to go. The Advanced setup is still user friendly, there are just more options that you can configure.
Finally, recovery. Recovery is a very important aspect of the tool and the creators of CloudBerry know this! If there isn’t a good recovery aspect of the tool, it is practically useless. Similar to the backup wizard, there is a recovery wizard.
In the wizard, you are able to restore different versions of the file (if configured in the backup). This is very useful, especially the “Point in Time” option that allows you to specify a time in the past that you want to restore the file(s) from.