Crashplan, People friendly. Enterprise tough.
Crashplan is one of a suite of products by Code42, a global enterprise SaaS provider.
They were founded in 2001 and their headquarters are in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with offices in London and Munich.
They provide endpoint data protection and security to over 37000 companies and their customers include 7 of the 10 largest technology companies.
Crashplan is a little different from most of the products that we review as it is designed for Backup rather than syncing and sharing data.
It is an excellent product if backup is your priority. It offers cloud backup whilst also facilitating local backup.
Backup and restore features:
As Crashplan is focused entirely on backup it does tend to slip a little in this category as there is no facility to sync or share files and folders and Code 42 no longer offer a sync and share product.
However, Crashplan prides itself on offering truly unlimited backup services.
They provide unlimited cloud storage and there are no limits to the number or size of files you can backup.
Files are backed up automatically with each change and you can access every version of every file, including those that have been deleted.
There are generous retention settings which you can adjust. In the interests of limiting memory usage by the app, Crashplan recommend that you do not increase the number of versions retained from the default setting. This is an unusual and very helpful feature for managing data efficiently.
Crashplan also gives you full and incremental backup which is expected. They offer bandwidth throttling which is not uncommon but very useful and not universally offered.
Your NAS and external drives can be included in your back up which again, is not offered by everyone but is a helpful inclusion and a must for many business users.
Whilst mobile apps are offered for Android, Apple and Windows, these are for accessing your data only and not backing up your mobile devices. Not ideal if you work from a tablet.
Pro users will get a couple of extra functions such as the ability to have individual logins and allow someone to manage them.
Enterprise users get even more, such as, the ability to set up groups of users, server support and the option to have private cloud. All plus points for a business.
This is not the strongest area for Crashplan . Geo-redundant storage is only offered on enterprise accounts and not individual, family or Pro. It is a peculiar omission; If you can offer it for 1 package then why not the other 3? especially as it’s something offered by so many other providers as standard.
Crashplan do not appear to own their own servers either which we generally prefer to see. As there is no file sharing, it is not surprising that there are no folder permissions either. Neither of these are deal breakers but it does put them at a disadvantage compared to some of the competition.
On the plus side files are encrypted for both transfer and storage. You can manage your own encryption key which we like to see.
Again, Crashplan do things a little differently with their encryption. They use 448-bit Blowfish for Home and Business accounts, and either Blowfish or 256-bit AES for Enterprise accounts. We don’t tend to see Blowfish being used very often but it is completely secure and some argue that it’s limited use mean fewer people trying to hack it.
Supported Configurations and Mobile Access:
Crashplan are in line with the competition here but not outstanding. The support MAX OS X 10.7.5 (Lion) or higher which isn’t the best as many cover from 10.6.
They are more comprehensive with regard to Windows with support for XP 2, Vista Service Pack 2, 7, 8, 8.1 (desktop mode), 10, Server 2008/2012 (excludes Windows Server Essentials, Windows Small Business Server, and Windows Home Server).
When it comes to mobile devices, Crashplan is suitable for Android 2.2 or later, iOS 7.0 onwards and Windows phone 7.5 and 8.
Crashplan offer a free account which gives you 30 days free cloud storage (you can backup locally indefinitely), once daily automatic backup.
It will not give you access to the mobile app, unlimited file versioning, multiple backup sets or web browser file access/restore and you will only have the online resources for support.
There are 2 personal paid options and 2 business. These are:
Individual – 1 computer – unlimited cloud storage – $5.99 for a monthly contract or $59.99 for a year.
Family – 2-10 computers – unlimited cloud storage – $13.99 for a monthly contract or $149.99 for a year.
Pro – up to 200 computers – $10.00 per computer per month (charged annually).
Enterprise – 100 – 100,000+ computers – $10.00 per user per month (charged annually) but you need to contact sales to discuss requirements and get a quote.
Crashplan are quite competitive on the personal side. However, if you are a business with a lot of computers then this is likely to be expensive.
Crashplan offers all users access to their comprehensive knowledgebase, tutorials, forums and FAQ’s.
Anyone with a paid account can email, phone or live chat.
Email support is available 24/7 but they do not specify a turnaround time for a response.
Phone and live chat for home and Pro users is available Monday – Friday, 9am-5pm (US Central time).
For enterprise users Crashplan offer extended hours for both. Live chat is available Monday-Friday, 7am-5pm (US Central time). Phone lines are open Monday-Friday, 7am-5pm and weekends, 9am-5pm (US Central time). There is also a UK line open Monday – Friday, 8am-5pm (GMT).
There are no video tutorial which would be preferable for some, but Crashplan still offer excellent support which will ensure that any query can be answered in a timely manner.
This is a good solution if you are only interested in Backup. They do this really well and offer a good range of features.
You also get unlimited storage and file sizes which means you have never have to worry about overuse charges or large files not being backed up.
Sync and share would be useful, as would the ability to back up mobiles. We are also surprised at their decision to offer geo-redundant storage to enterprise customers only.
All in all this is a good product and on the personal side very reasonably priced. For businesses with a lot of computers this will be expensive and the lack of sync facilities could be problematic.
Backup & Restore Features8.0/10
Help & Support9.5/10
Value for Money7.2/10
- Unlimited cloud storage
- Unlimited file versioning
- Generous retention settings
- Good support
- No syncing
- No sharing
- No mobile backup
- Geo redundant storage for home or pro users