Online Backup Redux

In response to my online backup question, I have narrowed things down to two finalists:

1. Mozy. I like this because, like a barhouse floozy, it’s cheap and easy. Wait, that wasn’t the right metaphor. It works. It has a nice UI. It prods me if a backup hasn’t been run in n days (where n=7 by default.) I was a little worried by the “encrypted on the server” thing at first. You see, you can log in to the web interface and download restored files. If that’s the case, then they’re storing both the encrypted data and the decryption key on the server–which is an extra step for hackers to jump through, but certainly not improbable. BUT, as it turns out, when you select your own key (an easily-remember pass phrase), then the stuff you download is a DMG of jibbirish until you pass it through the decryptor program with the correct passphrase. It’s free up to 2GB, then $5/month if you want more. Even if I never use it, it’s almost worth it to me to pay that and store my 100+ GB music library up there.

2. Duplicity. This is an open source app that stores encrypted TAR files up on your shell account. Like any good backup, it uses a base full backup followed by incremental diff backups. Everything’s wrapped in PGP (or GPG, in this case) for good encryption. Everything can then be stored on my shell account. It was a little tricky to install, mainly because the OS X Python could not find the Fink librsync, so I ended up installing my own build in /usr/local. The interface isn’t as friendly as Mozy, but it’s free and can easily be wrapped in shell scripts and linked in with cron jobs.

Honestly, I’m leaning toward Mozy, but have yet to make a final decision.

Posted in: Dear Diary Questions

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