Computers & Electronics

Best alternative to CrashPlan

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  • Nov 15th, 2017 12:32 pm
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Best alternative to CrashPlan

Just got an email saying CrashPlan is "exiting the consumer market". I've been using them for years, and so it's been years since I looked into my options. I plan on doing that shortly, but figured I'd post here to see if anybody who has done the research recently can recommend the best alternative.

Local encryption is a must-have feature, as is computer-to-computer (otherwise I'd just migrate to their "for business" option). I also used their cloud backup, but that is definitely not a requirement as long as I can have multiple computer-to-computer destinations. The source and destinations are all Windows PCs.

Any suggestions to start with?

EDIT: Another nearly-must-have is backup sets. Some stuff is super important and I want that to go to all my destinations, but other stuff is less important, or too large for some destinations with minimal storage space available, and so I pick and choose the destinations.
Last edited by GSRee on Aug 22nd, 2017 11:16 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Aug 26, 2002
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Very disappointed at that announcement because I just started using their free peer-to-peer backup between my Windows server and my brother's WHS server. Now there's no point in continuing. I'll also be looking for an alternative to CrashPlan that gives the same option of P2P backup plus local backups...
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wait what? no more free version? can we just save a copy of the installer right now and continue to use it locally? have to go read.
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Kevinck wrote: wait what? no more free version? can we just save a copy of the installer right now and continue to use it locally? have to go read.
Not sure. This is from their FAQ:
Backups to a local folder or friend’s computer continue to work until the end-of-support date for CrashPlan for Home, October 22, 2018.
Could be "after that you're running the software at your own risk and we don't guarantee your backups will work", or could be "after that our client drops dead".

EDIT: Found clarity in a separate FAQ:
You can continue to use the free version of CrashPlan for Home normally until the end-of-support date, October 22, 2018. At that time, the CrashPlan app will stop working: it will not be able to back up or restore files, even to local folders or friends’ computers.
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Nov 18, 2002
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Pretty bummed also. I've not found a feature for feature alternative especially local backups... Carbonite which are picking up some customers because of this does not offer this.
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Macrium Reflect? I'm not sure exactly what features of CrashPlan you needed (nor do I actually know it's capabilities), but I like Macrium a lot; very simple, IMO. I run a built-in backup (Grandfather, Father, Son) where it does a full backup xx days, differential every xx days, and incremental every day. When I want to restore something, I click the day I want, it mounts as a drive, and I copy what I need.

It does backup sets for sure. From there, maybe BitTorrent's BTSync to synchronize the backup folders? I'm not 100% sure what those other features you're looking for are, but check out Macrium ... maybe it does it.
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I would suggest staying with Crashplan for the next 12 months. They are giving current customers 75% off while moving to their Business plan. I believe that is $10 / month (I assume $10 USD). So with 75% off, that makes it $2.5 / month / device. I found it funny that they chose Carbonite as their fall back partner. All of their marketing material when comparing competitors has always been that Crashlpan offered much more than Carbonite :)

Has any current home customer migrated to the Business plan yet. Would love some feedback and a few notes about what is different between the Home and Business plan.
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bowmah wrote: I would suggest staying with Crashplan for the next 12 months. They are giving current customers 75% off while moving to their Business plan. I believe that is $10 / month (I assume $10 USD). So with 75% off, that makes it $2.5 / month / device. I found it funny that they chose Carbonite as their fall back partner. All of their marketing material when comparing competitors has always been that Crashlpan offered much more than Carbonite :)

Has any current home customer migrated to the Business plan yet. Would love some feedback and a few notes about what is different between the Home and Business plan.
It's $10 after discount I think.
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ichpen wrote: It's $10 after discount I think.
I just discovered the entire FAQ at Crashplan's website, looks like you are right. It's time to move all data from other PC's and only backup 1 PC then to keep the cost down.
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bowmah wrote: I just discovered the entire FAQ at Crashplan's website, looks like you are right. It's time to move all data from other PC's and only backup 1 PC then to keep the cost down.
I don't know how that will work. You can't run local backups free by sometime next year so you'll need a file level sync solution locally plus one crashplan cloud if you're trying to consolidate. It becomes unwieldy. I think times are changing and we need to find an equivalent service.

Yes there are lots of tools that do file and drive level backups. The nice thing about crashplan was a single console where you could manage your targets and cloud sync not to mention online recovery options. It was neat.
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ChubChub wrote: Macrium Reflect? I'm not sure exactly what features of CrashPlan you needed (nor do I actually know it's capabilities), but I like Macrium a lot; very simple, IMO. I run a built-in backup (Grandfather, Father, Son) where it does a full backup xx days, differential every xx days, and incremental every day. When I want to restore something, I click the day I want, it mounts as a drive, and I copy what I need.

It does backup sets for sure. From there, maybe BitTorrent's BTSync to synchronize the backup folders? I'm not 100% sure what those other features you're looking for are, but check out Macrium ... maybe it does it.
Thanks for the recommendation, that wasn't one that came up while I was searching for alternatives, so I'll definitely have to look into it.
bowmah wrote: I would suggest staying with Crashplan for the next 12 months. They are giving current customers 75% off while moving to their Business plan. I believe that is $10 / month (I assume $10 USD). So with 75% off, that makes it $2.5 / month / device. I found it funny that they chose Carbonite as their fall back partner. All of their marketing material when comparing competitors has always been that Crashlpan offered much more than Carbonite :)

Has any current home customer migrated to the Business plan yet. Would love some feedback and a few notes about what is different between the Home and Business plan.
I decided to take advantage of the cheap year earlier today. A few random notes: I miss my old tray icon. After starting the conversion, but before setting up billing, there was a warning to the effect of "If you don't finish now, your files will be deleted", so don't start the process until you're really ready, and make sure you finish! Backing up to a local folder is still 100% supported and no extra charge. Backing up to another computer seems to be supported as well, as long as you pay another $10/mo for the second device. Backup to friends is gone altogether.
ichpen wrote: It's $10 after discount I think.
It's free until your Home license expires (so you don't lose anything by switching early), then it's $2.50/mo for 12 months, then it's $10/mo forever.

.

In my searching I found Backblaze to be completely stupid for backup purposes (Only 30 days of versioning? Ridiculous restore methods? How do they have customers!). I didn't look too much into Carbonite because it's stupid expensive just because I use Windows Server. SpiderOak is just as expensive as CrashPlan so didn't look much into it either.

I also looked into a few programs that don't offer to host your backups, just manage them with one of the big cloud storage providers. Arq and CloudBerry both looked promising, but storage costs at most of the cloud storage providers means I'd again be paying more than $10/mo. With Backblaze's B2 service as the storage provider I could come out ahead ($5/mo for 1TB), but to be honest now that I know CrashPlan Pro still supports backing up to a local folder, I'm just way too lazy to investigate new options when I'm only going to save $5/mo...
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ichpen wrote: I don't know how that will work. You can't run local backups free by sometime next year so you'll need a file level sync solution locally plus one crashplan cloud if you're trying to consolidate. It becomes unwieldy. I think times are changing and we need to find an equivalent service.

Yes there are lots of tools that do file and drive level backups. The nice thing about crashplan was a single console where you could manage your targets and cloud sync not to mention online recovery options. It was neat.
I agree. Crashplan home (their cloud service) and backing up off site to another computer has worked well for many. I don't mind payign $10 / month / device for their cloud service but if that is the 75% off, then forget it. Don't want to be in search for another provider in 12 months. For someone who needs 5TB or more, even Amazon's glacier storage is cost prohibitive.

Do we really have to go with Carbonite now? Yikes...

Crashplan is not going to offer current customers $10 / month / device even if we continue to stay. It's only for 12 months. Again, if it's $10 for the lifetime of my current Crashplan account, I will stay.
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GSRee wrote: It's free until your Home license expires (so you don't lose anything by switching early), then it's $2.50/mo for 12 months, then it's $10/mo forever.
This is the part that is unclear. If it's $10 / month after the first 12 months, then I will stay. There is confusion that $10 / month / device was the 75% discounted price. Can you check your new account?

I also have to get my main PC below 5TB so it will transfer. Then start bringing over data from the other PC's and backup one PC only (using that one PC to backup other PC's).
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GSRee wrote: now that I know CrashPlan Pro still supports backing up to a local folder
Can you clarify what backing up to a local folder means. Maybe I missed something that Crashplan could do as I never needed it.
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bowmah wrote: Crashplan is not going to offer current customers $10 / month / device even if we continue to stay. It's only for 12 months. Again, if it's $10 for the lifetime of my current Crashplan account, I will stay.
For 12 months you'll get it at $2.50/mo. Then after that it's the regular price of $10/mo. Which of course won't be for the lifetime of the account, I'm sure over the years they'll up the price on us. Or maybe not, because bandwidth and storage get cheaper over time. I seem to remember Home going up in price a couple times since I started using it many years ago though, so I assume PRO will too.
bowmah wrote: Can you clarify what backing up to a local folder means. Maybe I missed something that Crashplan could do as I never needed it.
You can designate a folder as a backup destination. So for example I have Y:\CrashPlan, which has about a half dozen different backup sets backing up to it. It's my first choice when I need to restore something, because it's local and fast, and the cloud offering is only there if my house ever blows up (hopefully not with me in it).
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GSRee wrote: For 12 months you'll get it at $2.50/mo. Then after that it's the regular price of $10/mo. Which of course won't be for the lifetime of the account, I'm sure over the years they'll up the price on us. Or maybe not, because bandwidth and storage get cheaper over time. I seem to remember Home going up in price a couple times since I started using it many years ago though, so I assume PRO will too.



You can designate a folder as a backup destination. So for example I have Y:\CrashPlan, which has about a half dozen different backup sets backing up to it. It's my first choice when I need to restore something, because it's local and fast, and the cloud offering is only there if my house ever blows up (hopefully not with me in it).
ok, what I thought and shared with you originally was correct. Someone made a comment about the $10 / month being the discounted rate and that threw me off.

As for the local backup, I have been using SyncBack (pro and free) to duplicate important files locally. Looks like you use CP to do this. If the PC with CP ever dies, will backups be accessible through Windows? Or will you need to install CP then point it to the local CP backup to retrieve your files. Reason I ask is, in my situation, because I use SyncBack inside Windows to run local backups, if the machine ever dies, the local backup drive can be read by any Windows machine.

Looks like we both run the 3,2,1 backup plan. Nice.
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bowmah wrote: ok, what I thought and shared with you originally was correct. Someone made a comment about the $10 / month being the discounted rate and that threw me off.
Yeah his statement can read either "$10 after you factor in the discount" or "$10 after the discount period ends" so I'm not sure which he meant.
bowmah wrote: As for the local backup, I have been using SyncBack (pro and free) to duplicate important files locally. Looks like you use CP to do this. If the PC with CP ever dies, will backups be accessible through Windows? Or will you need to install CP then point it to the local CP backup to retrieve your files. Reason I ask is, in my situation, because I use SyncBack inside Windows to run local backups, if the machine ever dies, the local backup drive can be read by any Windows machine.
Unfortunately you need CrashPlan installed to do any restores from the local folder. I used to use robocopy to duplicate my files, and I definitely miss the ease of restoring!
bowmah wrote: Looks like we both run the 3,2,1 backup plan. Nice.
Well now that I can't backup to another computer it's down to the 3,-,1 backup plan. Maybe I'll do like ChubChub suggested and use btsync to replicate the local backup folder to my work PC, so then I'll have my "not as fast as local, but faster than cloud" restores back without paying CrashPlan for a second device.
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GSRee wrote: Yeah his statement can read either "$10 after you factor in the discount" or "$10 after the discount period ends" so I'm not sure which he meant.



Unfortunately you need CrashPlan installed to do any restores from the local folder. I used to use robocopy to duplicate my files, and I definitely miss the ease of restoring!



Well now that I can't backup to another computer it's down to the 3,-,1 backup plan. Maybe I'll do like ChubChub suggested and use btsync to replicate the local backup folder to my work PC, so then I'll have my "not as fast as local, but faster than cloud" restores back without paying CrashPlan for a second device.
But you can still backup to another HDD on the same PC right? This was what you meant when you said local folder. It's not true 3,2,1 but the chances of a desktop PC dieing and pulling all harddrives with it is low. Short of a lightning strike, normally, when users lose data, it's the user deleting it by mistake or a single drive failing. That is what I am betting on!
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bowmah wrote: But you can still backup to another HDD on the same PC right? This was what you meant when you said local folder. It's not true 3,2,1 but the chances of a desktop PC dieing and pulling all harddrives with it is low. Short of a lightning strike, normally, when users lose data, it's the user deleting it by mistake or a single drive failing. That is what I am betting on!
Yep, that's what I meant. And yeah the likelihood of ever needing a third or even second backup is low, I only did it in the past because the feature was there and was free (well the cloud part cost money, but I was paying to unlock the extra features anyway so figured why not use the space that came with it).

Although now that I think about it having the backup folder synced to my work PC wouldn't be a bad idea...if my backup HD ever dies then all my quickly-accessible previous versions die along with it. Having the backup folders synced to work means I could sync them back home after buying a replacement backup HD.
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GSRee wrote: Yep, that's what I meant. And yeah the likelihood of ever needing a third or even second backup is low, I only did it in the past because the feature was there and was free (well the cloud part cost money, but I was paying to unlock the extra features anyway so figured why not use the space that came with it).

Although now that I think about it having the backup folder synced to my work PC wouldn't be a bad idea...if my backup HD ever dies then all my quickly-accessible previous versions die along with it. Having the backup folders synced to work means I could sync them back home after buying a replacement backup HD.
Heads up, Syncback, even the free option has versioning just in case you ever want another option to duplicating files locally without using CP.

Add-On; I was mistaken, versioning is on the Paid version. Got confused, I run both versions.
Last edited by bowmah on Aug 24th, 2017 1:24 am, edited 1 time in total.

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