Backing up your files and system is essential whether you're a casual user or a pro. Disasters happen all the time. How many times have you spilled coffee on your laptop? What would you do if your device got stolen? What if your old machine suddenly gives up on you?
Backup systems have been around for a while. The advancement of cloud services further improved online backup services. Options are getting more affordable every year.
What is a Cloud Backup?
"I already have Google Drive, Box, and Dropbox. Aren't they cloud backup?"
Not exactly. Online syncing services, such as Google Drive, Box, and Dropbox, are different from online backup services in many ways. Online syncing services handle items in designated folders in your system. Its uploads to servers than "broadcast" the files to your other devices.
There is a constant upload and download of your data as you access them. On the other hand, online backup services continuously back up every personal file on your computer to a third-party server. It does not make the data available to any other devices until you decide to download them again.
Moreover, online syncing services are relatively more expensive. You have to pay more to avail larger space on their servers. In contrast, online backup services have flat, low fee. Some packages even include back up of your system on top of your files.
Lastly, data flow is very different between the two as well. Online syncing services have constant upload and download on all your devices. It ensures that you have access to your updated files at all times.
On the other hand, online backup services would typically only upload your files. Your data stay on the servers once uploaded. You just need to download them when you want to restore your system.
Check out our best cloud backups for Windows 10.
Top 5 Cloud Backups for Windows 10
First Time Users
Acronis True Image
Heavy Data Backup
SOS Online Backup
Backblaze is perfect for those choosing online backup services for the first time. It has one of the most straightforward plans and packages around. More importantly, at $5 a month, it is one of the most affordable plans around.
You can even save if you pay for the $95 two-year plan. The personal backup plan is a no-frills package. You don't need to fret over different packages as there's only one.
The personal backup plan offers unlimited backup with no file size limitations. It does not require throttle bandwidth which is beneficial especially during initial backup. The easy installer is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista and XP.
Mac users can install it if the have macOS 10.6 and up. Your files are encrypted using 128-bit AES in the server with the optional private encryption key.
Backblaze also has Android and iOS applications for easy access to your files. You can restore quickly with the options to have FedEx deliver you a 128GB flash drive or a 4TB external drive of your data. Both retail for $99 and $189 respectively.
Carbonite is an excellent choice if you want a few options. It offers three levels of personal plans in Basic at $5 a month, Plus at $8.33 a month, and Prime at $12.50 a month. Each plan has unique features on top of the primary online backup function. Of course, you can save money if you pay for two or three-year package.
The online backup services have been around since 2006 which makes it one of the more established in the business. There are no file size limits, but you have to add files over 4GB manually.
Additionally, there are no file type restrictions, but you have to manually add video files unless you are in the Prime plan. The installer is available in all versions of Windows and macOS. It also comes with iOS and Android applications.
You can restore files through their program or use your browser to download your file. You can also change the schedule of the backup to avoid affecting your workflow. Carbonite also has phone, email, chat, and self-support options for its massive user base.
Acronis True Image
Acronis True Image offers some unique online backup features compare to the others on this list. The Standard package offers all local backup features for a one-time fee of $49.99. You do need to have your hard drive for this plan.
The Advanced Package is a one-year subscription for $49.99 which includes 250GB (500GB for additional $20) cloud storage. The Premium option will give you 1TB of cloud storage at $99.99 for a one-year subscription. You can expand your space up to 5TB as well.
The backup service allows you to have a full image backup aside from your files. That means you can recover your entire system. You can even clone your disk to another partition for local backup. It actively monitors suspicious software and avoids creating a back up for them.
Acronis True Image has one of the most beautiful and clean interfaces. Its user-friendly software makes it easy to see everything. It can backup your Instagram and Facebook profile as well as. Additionally, you can backup your mobile devices.
iDrive is practically a veteran backup service founded back in 1995. It is one of the few facilities which offers free backup services with 5GB storage. Its Personal 2TB backup plan costs $52.12 a year. It also has a Personal 5TB plan which is $74.62 a year.
The online backup service is primarily a disaster recovery tool. It protects you from losing files during hard drive crashes and similar incidents. It supports all Windows version, macOS, and Linux distributions.
You'll also get an Android and iOS applications. Both mobile applications can backup your calendar, media, and contacts. The Android version backups texts, call logs, and app data as well. iDrive also offers Instagram and Facebook backup services.
What set's iDrive aside from other online backup services is its ability to sync files as well. That means it functions similar to Google Drive, Box, or Dropbox. It installs a folder in your file system much similar to how online syncing services work.
The web interface is clean and user-friendly. It even offers Office 365 backup feature for Microsoft Office files.
SOS Online Backup
SOS Online Backup offers a lot of storage options under its SOS Personal plan. It can support up to five computers starting at 50GB for $4.99 a month to 10TB for $299.99 a month.
It does not have any file size limits or any file type restrictions. Its transfer and storage encryption both use 256-bit AES with an optional private encryption key. One of the advantages of SOS Online Backup is its unlimited file versioning.
In most online backup services, file versioning is only limited up to a specific time, usually 30 days. However, with SOS Online Backup, you can access files that are no longer on your computer for a long time. It works well for an entire hard drive, too.
You can preview videos, audios, and image files in their web UI. You can also stream it to the mobile application. You can easily share data using another person's email address. Unfortunately, SOS's LiveProtect, which backups changes, you need to enable it on individual files. It doesn't work on folders and drives.
Keeping a backup of your files and systems is necessary nowadays. Growing security threats require you to not only install robust anti-malware systems like MalwareFox or Malwarebytes but regularly backup your files as well. Your little investment in online backup services can help protect your data and files in case of unfortunate events in the future.