Product 1 Review
Today most of the businesses run on the digital platform. Surprisingly, some businesses don't have any brick-mortar office, they run completely online. On one hand, digital platforms offer more exposure for any business by providing unlimited marketing, lead-capture and sale opportunities, while on the other hand, a single loophole in security or data handling can bring the business down. A business needs to be protected from hackers, human-errors and hardware failures. But practically it's almost impossible to do so. Hardware failures and human error in data handling are very common. How can we forget the black hats, for ransomware and bringing down the sites? Mybizhomepage, a $100 million company had to shut down its business due to the data breach. Usually low to mid-size businesses are the main target of the attackers, because they don't have enough budget/dedicated team to prevent such incidents.
A solution to such incidents is taking regular backups of the data to an external drive. But even here is a catch. It's not wise to put the original data and the backed up data at one place. The local backed-up data will be of no use in case of theft or fire like incidents. Here comes the cloud-storage as a saviour. You can backup your data to a server, quite far away from your original-data computer. Cloud backup also avoids any internal security breach.
There are several cloud storage companies offering various plans for small to large businesses. These cloud storage plans range from free to paid ones. As a business owner, it's important to first understand your own data volume and the business-scale before choosing any plan. It's not wise to go for a cheaper plan to save couple of bucks which in future may cost you a business-failure. Also, it's quite impractical to select an expensive plan when your requirements are quite less.
This article reviews CrashPlan, one of the leading cloud storage provider, for business owners.
An American software company Code42 launched CrashPlan backup software and service suite in 2007. It got popular among the users quickly because of its features, interface and reliability. CrashPlan has a very user-friendly interface and it boasts unlimited storage which stands it out from the crowd. Since October 2018, Crashplan has discontinued the home plans (the free ones) and is focusing on the business plans only. Currently, CrashPlan is serving more than 50,000 organizations worldwide including global brands. CrashPlan offers a business plan for $10/month per computer. For enterprise plan which starts beyond 199 computers, one has to contact the sales team of Code42.
1) Unlimited Storage
Yes, you read it right. CrashPlan provides unlimited volume of data storage for your business. You don't have to worry about running out of allocated space for backup or compressing your files before backup.
2) Unlimited backup version
CrashPlan not only promises unlimited data storage, but it also retains all the previous versions of your data. All you have to do is instruct the Crashplan software, how many versions of the data you want to retain as a backup.
3) All platform compatibility
It doesn't matter on which environment your business runs on, CrashPlan is available for you. It has got a desktop app for Linux, Mac and Windows. Moreover, it also has web-app as well. So, just in case, you want to access your CrashPlan data while browsing the internet, open another tab and login to CrashPlan in the browser itself. No need to open the desktop app.
4) Data Encryption
People behind Crashplan seem to be serious professionals. They have considered the security of user's data very seriously. The military standard 256 AES encryption has been provided to the user's data. It is good to know that this encryption takes place even before your data leaves your computer for CrashPlan server. First your data is encrypted, then it is uploaded to the CrashPlan server as a backup.
5) HIPAA Compliant
Code42 has made CrashPlan HIPAA compliant for the USA resident professionals. But the users have to follow the necessary procedures and policies from their side as well. To avail HIPAA compliance facility the user has to sign a "Business Associate Agreement" (BAA) with Code42. As soon as this agreement is signed you are good to go with HIPAA.
6) Set it and Forget
Once you are done with the initial configurations, you will never have to worry about the backup. CrashPlan always runs in the background without letting you know that it is even present on your computer. It does what it is meant to, encrypt and keep your data safe to its server.
7) Incremental backup
An incremental backup is the one in which the successive copy of the data contains only the portion that has been changed since the last backup. In CrashPlan, only the initial backup of your computer takes time depending on your data volume and upload speed. Once the initial backup is completed, incremental backup method is applied to the files. This method assures quick backup and requires lesser space.
8) Real-time backup
This is one of the most fascinating features of CrashPlan. While you are modifying a file on your computer the CrashPlan which is running in the background senses this change and does what makes it extraordinary. It back up your file in the real-time while you are editing it. It doesn't matter if something very unusual happens like a power failure. The file you were working on is safe up to the point the power failure happened.
CrashPlan nailed it!
9) External Drive Protection
Yes, it's correct that you are limited to 1 computer for $10/month but CrashPlan offers you to backup any external hard drive attached to your computer. As you insert the external hard drive CrashPlan starts the backup. Once the external drive is backed you can remove it. Next time when you plug-in the same drive, CrashPlan recognizes it and starts the incremental backup on the drive just as it does on the computer.
10) Dedicated Support
A product without a good support team can't go too long. CrashPlan offers a dedicated support team which is always ready to help its users. You are stuck somewhere in CrashPlan get help from the team from any of the three ways i.e. submit a ticket, live chat, call.
Let's have a look at the thumbs up of CrashPlan.
1) Free trial
The team behind CrashPlan is so confident about their masterpiece that they provide a 30-day free trial. You don't have to give credit card details while signing up for 30-day trial, so no headaches. Use their services for 30 days to know whether it is worth to spend $10/month or not. I bet you won't find a better deal for cloud storage.
Safety of your data ensures your growth in the industry. Big companies spend hugely only on their data security and backups with an enterprise plan. Even if you are a small company the CrashPlan business for $10/month is quite affordable. Isn't it?
3) No user intervention
Most of the backup software nag you from time to time. Yes, I know its frustrating. But CrashPlan never does that. Once the initial settings are applied you will never have to open the software. It keeps on running in the background without even letting your neighbor giving any signal about its existence. Cool Ha!
Yes, CrashPlan is extraordinary but a review can't be complete without dissecting the negative points. Just like anything else, even CrashPlan is not perfect. There are some thumbs down as well.
1) Single Computer backup
One of the biggest problems with CrashPlan is that you can backup only a single computer with a $10/month plan. But you get the unlimited storage with real-time backup. Don't you?
2) Sometimes Memory hog
As more and more data is added to the backup, sometimes (not always) it is seen that CrashPlan uses more than normal memory which slows down the computer. The solution is to pause your work and give CrashPlan sometime to backup. After all, it's saving your data for your own growth.
3) Slow speed
While this is not the case for every user, Some have reported that the upload/download speed is quite slow. There are more people enjoying fast backup/restoration speed of CrashPlan.
It doesn't matter whether you are an individual or a company. If your growth relies heavily on the data of your computer, you need a cloud storage. Although there are several companies offering cloud storage, CrashPlan stands out from the crowd with its user-friendly interface, unlimited storage and speed.
Our rating: 4.5/5
CrashPlan Promo Codes
CrashPlan is a great service to backup your data. You can also get discount if you decide to use CrashPlan as a cloud backup software. Here are some promo codes that you can use.
Other Cloud Backup Services: A Comparison
Competitors of any product try to provide more features than their rivals. This may come at a cost for the users or turn out to be a better deal in terms of features. At the end of the day, it's the user who decides which product they want to use. If one can find a cloud storage service as per his requirement then he deserves a peaceful sleep.
Currently, there are several cloud storage services actively running. This section of the article highlights 6 more cloud backup services which users prefer apart from CrashPlan.
Blackblaze is a US based company which was started in 2007. It offers plan per computer but the storage is unlimited. You can use the Blackblaze app on your android or iPhone to access files. With Blackblaze you can share your backed up files with anyone by giving them the link. You can not backup the system files with Blackblaze but backing up system files will in any way make the backup process slow. Blackblaze provides the two-factor authentication as a security measure for its users. The drive shipping facility is not available initial seed. It is available for restore process only.
- Unlimited Storage
- Sharing capability
- External hard drive backup
- File versioning
- Strong Security features
- Limited to one computer
- File versioning lasts for 30 days
- Private encryption not end-to-end
- No mobile device backup
- Drive shipping – restore only
IDrive is a California based company which was launched in1995, which makes it one of the most experienced in data backup field. The best part of iDrive is that you can backup unlimited number of devices. But this unlimited number of devices comes with a drawback i.e. iDrive does not provide unlimited storage. Also iDrive backup is slow because it does not provide multi-threaded backup. You can backup your system files with iDrive but you need to change the settings because it is not set to backup the system files as default. IDrive provides two-factor authentication as a security measure. The drive shipping is provided for both seed and restore.
Price: $52.12 for the first year
- Unlimited computer/devices
- File Sharing Capability
- Block level backup
- Private encryption
- Drive shipping for both seed & restore
- 2TB storage cap
- Backup up to 30 versions
- No multi-threaded backup
- System files not backed up by default
Acronis was launched in 2005 for backup services. It provides good speed due to its global network of data centres. It also provides disk imaging and cloning. But Acronis is not available for Linux and it also does not have the two-factor authentication. Acronis does provide the backing up of system files in case you need it to but it does not provide drive shipping neither for seed not for restore.
Price: $69/year for workstation
- Fast backup
- Disk Imaging and cloning
- Global server network
- Hybrid backup
- Private, end-to-end encryption
- No Linux support
- No two-factor authentication
- No external drive backup
- No drive shipping either for seed or restore
Carbonite was started in 2005 for backup services. It provides unlimited backup but it is seen as one of the slowest backup services in the industry. Also, there is no option to make it faster, but you can throttle the speed in case it interferes with your resources. Its client is the easiest to use whether on the web app, desktop or mobile. Strong privacy is the best part of the Carbonite backup service. It does not provide backup of system and application files. As a security measure, it provides the two-factor authentication. Carbonite provides drive shipping for restore process only.
Price: $6/month/computer, $24/month/multiple-computer (billed annually)
- Unlimited Backup
- Strong privacy
- External hard drive backup
- Backup by file type
- Two-factor authentication
- No mobile device backups
- No versioning for macOS
- No system and application files backup
- drive shipping for restore only
SpiderOak was founded in 2007 and headquartered in Chicago. With Spideroak you can backup unlimited devices and unlimited versions. It has focused on transparency for the user whether in the backup process or its data centre's location. It has applied the features that are taken right out of the cloud storage handbook. Some of SpiderOak's components are open-source (transparency) and it has announced that in future it will be completely open-source. SpiderOak does not provide backup of system and application files by default. In case you want to backup these files you need to change the settings. Basic users don't get the security of two-factor authentication as it is for the legacy users only. SpiderOak does not provide drive shipping either for seeding or for the restoration process.
- Unlimited devices
- Unlimited versions
- External drive backup
- Command line option
- private encryption
- No network attached storage backup
- No mobile backup
- No two-factor authentication
- No drive shipping either for seed or restore
6) SOS Online Backup
SOS online backup was launched in 2001 by Infrascale. Lots of users like it because of its fast upload and download speed. This speed is due to the own servers of SOS online backup located in US, Australia, India and Ukraine. You never have to complain about the speed (like with most other services) because SOS online backup utilizes your bandwidth to the maximum. SOS online backup offers NAS backup and external drive backup as well. While it has implemented good security features like three layers of 256-bit encryption, the absence of two-factor authentication leaves the user to rely completely on passwords. The best part of SOS online backup is the unlimited versioning of the backed up files.
Price: $4.99/month, 5 PC and Mac, unlimited mobiles
- Unlimited versions
- External drive backup
- Mobile backup
- NAS backup
- Private encryption
- No continuous backup
- No two-factor authentication
- No unlimited storage option
- No browser access to files
CrashPlan Frequently Asked Questions
1) Which ports does CrashPlan use?
It's important to have the information about the ports being used by CrashPlan, for troubleshooting. You may want to whitelist the CrashPlan connection in antivirus/firewall on your computer or may require this information to diagnose the connection issues between computers.
To know which ports your CrashPlan is using, follow the below steps-
i) Open the CrashPlan app
ii)Double-click the CrashPlan logo in the upper-right corner.
The command-line interface appears.
iii) Enter the following command: connection.info
iv) Press Enter.
CrashPlan responds with the internal IP address and port information.
For computer-to-computer backup, the value of port is used and the UI Port is used by the CrashPlan service.
An example of the "connection.info" command may be
Here, Port-4242 is used for the computer-to-computer backup and UI Port- 4243 is used for CrashPlan services.
2) Can CrashPlan backup NAS?
A Network Attached Storage (NAS) is a file-level (as opposed to block level) computer data-storage server connected to a computer network, providing data access to various users.
With both CrashPlan Business and CrashPlan Enterprise you can backup your NAS. To do so, your NAS should be mounted on the computer which has active CrashPlan service. Also, CrashPlan does not backup the mapped drives on Windows. This is an OS-level restriction built-in Windows and CrashPlan has nothing to do with it. However, there is a non-supported workaround. NAS backup is supported for Linux and Mac operating systems. Real-time backup feature is not applied to the NAS. Thus any change will only be backed up while file verification scan.
3) What is a file verification scan?
The file verification scan inspects your file selection for any new, changed or deleted files. This provides CrashPlan a second chance to locate the modified files which real-time scanner might have missed.
When the file verification process initiates, the service compares the cache indexes of both the source and the destination. If by any chance it finds any modifications (new, changed or deleted file) at the source, CrashPlan assigns it in the to-do-list.
By default file verification scan is set to run automatically but it can be changed by updating the preferred time for verification scan in the device backup settings.
Apart from this setting, verification scan can trigger at the following events-
i) Changing file selection – When you update your backup file selection, this verification process is triggered to find the new, changed or deleted files.
ii) Device replacement – When you replace your device (change device), this scan is triggered to compare the cache index at the destination.
iii) Cache Clearing – Cache has the database about the file/folder information for both source and the destination. This information is used to compare the source and the destination quickly. When you empty the cache this information is also lost. To rebuild the information, this file verification is triggered.
iv) Mounting an external drive – When you attach an external drive to your computer and it is detected by CrashPlan, the file verification is triggered to compare the modifications on the external drive by comparing the cache information.
v) At re-connection – If for any reason (hibernate, power-off), the verification process was not able to run at the scheduled time, it is programmed to trigger after the 15 min of re-connection.
vi) Manually – If you feel like a manual verification is needed you trigger it manually from Backup Set Settings Menu.
4) How to restore from CrashPlan to a computer after formatting?
CrashPlan backups all your data in the chosen location (external drive, another computer or cloud). When you format your computer, you can easily restore this data from the pre-selected location. It's recommended to install the same OS from which the backup was made. After formatting always keep the same username so that paths are not changed.
The restoration process in CrashPlan is as following –
i) Download and install the latest version of CrashPlan app.
ii) Open the CrashPlan app and sign-in to your existing account
iii) Now select the restore tab.
iv) If there are more than one computers in your account, then select the one you want to restore.
v) If your backups are located in multiple locations then select the one from which you want to restore in the backup destination list.
vi) If you are restoring from an archive then see below
a) From another computer – The computer must be turned On.
b) From an external HDD – The drive must be connected and mounted on the
c) From cloud – You must be connected to the internet.
vii) Now click most recent to restore the version of the files to be restored.
viii) Choose a date and time just before formatting your computer.
ix) Use the check boxes to select the folders.
Till now you have instructed the CrashPlan app what to restore. It also needs to know where to restore.
x) Click original permission to update the description to current permission.
xi) Change the location of where the files are restored by clicking Desktop, then the original location. The location should be set to a folder.
xii) Change the folder by clicking on the default (Desktop).
xiii) From the Select a Directory dialog, choose the user folder, on your new computer.
xiv) Change the default setting rename to overwrite.
xvi) Click Restore.
5) How to remove a computer from CrashPlan Business?
CrashPlan bills you for the active computer added in your account. As soon as a computer is added/removed the billing changes as per the active state of a computer. When you remove a computer, CrashPlan stops the backup and removes all its backup from the cloud. If you again add that computer you need to start the backup service again.
You need to follow the below steps to remove a computer from CrashPlan backup –
i) Sign-in to your CrashPlan administration console.
ii) Go to Devices -> Active
iii) Click the device name of the computer that you want to remove.
iv) Click the settings menu
v) Click Deactivate.
vi) Select I understand this device's archive will be deleted.
vii) Click Ok.
You have successfully removed the computer from CrashPlan backup service.
6) Why CrashPlan is Slow?
If you have large data, you may sometime feel that CrashPlan is running slow Sometimes you may also face the difficulty to run CrashPlan even manually. The services simply do not run or aborts.
These all are the symptoms of CrashPlan memory issues. In the CrashPlan document, it is mentioned that you must allocate 1GB memory to CrashPlan service per 1TB of your data. This is because CrashPlan can handle only 1 TB data or 1.5 million files with the 1GB allocated memory. So in case, you have more than 1TB of data or more than 1.5 million files consider allocating more memory for CrashPlan.
You may have to reinstall the CrashPlan app to do so. After you have allocated sufficient memory to the app you will not face such problems.
7) Is CrashPlan GDPR compliant?
The General Data Protection Regulation is enacted to ensure the data privacy for all individuals in the European Union (EU). All organizations or websites which in any manner have the personal data of EU individuals have to abide by this regulation, worldwide. This regulation was effectively applied on 25th May 2018.
It's interesting to know that the GDPR rights are applied and limited to the individuals residing in EU regardless of their citizenship. Which means a non-EU resident if residing in EU is protected by this regulation and EU citizen residing outside EU is not protected by this regulation.
CrashPlan is GDPR compliant and it applies the regulation by-
i) Implementing technical and organizational measures to ensure that the personal data is protected.
ii) Providing timely data-breach notification to the users.
iii) Transferring the personal data outside EU only if there is a lawful transfer mechanism in place with the organization receiving the data. This security measure ensures that the EU individual personal data is protected as per GDPR.
8) Does CrashPlan has any mobile app?
In June 2011, Code42 acquired a mobile development company Recursive Awesome LLC to aid mobile versions of CrashPlan. Later code42 introduced the CrashPlan apps mobile apps for android and iPhone. After many users reported errors using the app, on 15 May 2018 CrashPlan had discontinued its mobile apps.
So currently CrashPlan has no mobile app.
9) CrashPlan can't connect to background service?
Sometimes you may get the error message "can not connect to the background service"
To understand and resolve this error, first you need to understand that CrashPlan app consists of two parts –
i) Graphical user interface with which the user interacts
ii) CrashPlan service that runs in the background.
These two services communicate over a local network built into every device. When the CrashPlan app starts these two services initiate a hand-shake. If in any condition this hand-shake does not happen then you get the error "can not connect to the background service"
There are some steps that you can take to resolve this error.
a) Restart the CrashPlan app.
b) It may be because of the memory issue. Crashplan is designed to handle 1TB or 1.5 million files with 1GB of allocated memory. If your data exceeds 1Tb or 1.5
million files, consider allocating more memory to CrashPlan.
c) Reinstall the CrashPlan app
d) Check if another application is using the Crashplan assigned ports.
10) Can CrashPlan backup BitLocker?
BitLocker is a full volume encryption feature of Microsoft Windows. It was started from Windows Visa version onwards. By default it uses AES encryption with 128 or 256-bit key.
CrashPlan supports backing up encrypted files, folders, drives and file system that run at a system or user level. Since BitLocker runs at a drive level CrashPlan is able to backup its files. However, this backup is only possible when the BitLocker is unlocked and its folder/files are decrypted. CrashPlan can't enter the Bitlocker when it is locked. If you want to backup the folder/files of BitLocker, you may run a manual file verification.
In case you want to backup your BitLocker files you should understand the security risk as well. You BitLocker files are backed up only when the BitLocker is unlocked, which means that the folder/files inside BitLocker are uploaded as decrypted. When you restore your folder/files they will be in decrypted form only.
11) How can I get support from CrashPlan?
CrashPlan provides support in three forms viz.
i) Web support – You can create a ticket and do a follow up. This is 24/7
ii) Chat support – Instant support. Monday to Friday 07:00 am to 05:00 pm. UTC -05:00.
iii) Phone Support – United States 888-314-8842 (Select option 1)
International +1 612-333-4242 (Select option 1, then option 1)
12) Does CrashPlan has two-factor authentication?
No, CrashPlan does not offer the two-factor authentication. It, however, provides two stages of passwords.But, passwords are passwords, they get forgotten and stolen.
13) What are CrashPlan system requirements?
There are certain minimum requirements for CrashPlan to run smoothly. These can be broadly divided into three parts viz.
i) Administration Console –
a)Minimum resolution – 1024 x 768
b) Chrome (most recent)
c) Firefox (most recent)
d) IE 11(on windows)
e) Microsoft Edge (most recent, on windows)
f) Safari (most recent onMac, Linux)
The administration console does not support mobile web browsers.
ii) The App requirement-
a) If you have more than 1TB data or more than 1.5 million files make sure that
you allocate the sufficient memory to the app. CrashPlan uses 1GB memory for
1TB data or for 1.5 million files.
b) CrashPlan uses the internet for its every activity, whether login, backup or restore.
For detailed requirements see Code42 article.
14) Crashplan keeps crashing
CrashPlan needs more memory in case you have more than 1TB of data or more than 1.5 million files.
The first thing you can do is restart the app. If this doesn't fix the issue then allocate the required memory to the CrashPlan app.
If even this doesn't resolve then may be you have to reinstall the app. While re-installing don't forget to allocate sufficient memory to the app.
This will definitely solve the problem.
15) Does CrashPlan backups system files?
Yes, CrashPlan does backups the system files but it is not recommended to backup such files. These files are continuously changing in the background while you work on a specific file. CrashPlan real-time-backup will prioritize these files because they are smaller in size. This will result in longer backup time and sometimes the backup never reaches 100% because these files are continuously changing while the computer is switched on.
16) CrashPlan can not connect to the destination?
Sometimes you may get the error "can not connect to the destination".
First, you need to find out whether this error is for an external HDD or for your computer. Usually, this happens for an external HDD. In that case, mount the HDD and run the manual verification.
In case this happens for your computer. Then there are two solutions, viz.
i) Restart the app
ii) Reinstall the app.
17) CrashPlan commands
There are several commands that you can run via CrashPlan command interface. Using the app with commands is quicker and easier.
First, depending on your OS open the commands interface
Linux – Ctrl+Shift+C
Widows – Ctrl+Shift+C
Mac – Option+Command+C
Make sure that you enter the commands without quotes. Commands are case-sensitive thus make sure that A is not equal to a. If using multiple commands in a single line, make sure to separate them with a comma.
You can find the list of commands at Code42 article.
18) What is CrashPlan de-duplication?
De-duplication refers to exclude the duplicate files.
In the initial backup, CrashPlan uploads all the data present on your computer. This upload is done at block level. At this time a cache is also generated. This cache is used to identify the file modification on the source computer. There are several files which are present in more than one location on the source computer. CrashPlan identifies these files and does not upload the duplicates. This saves backup time and space at the destination.
19) How to uninstall CrashPlan?
Linux – Open the terminal and go to your download location of CrashPlan. The enter the following command
sudo ./uninstall.sh -i /usr/local/crashplan
Mac – Open the Finder
Paste this text in the dialog box
i) Installed for everyone: /Library/Application Support/CrashPlan/Uninstall.app
ii) Installed per user: ~/Library/Application Support/CrashPlan/Uninstall.app
iii) Click Go
iv) Double Click Uninstall
Windows – Use the built in uninstall feature as per your Windows version
20) How to delete CrashPlan account?
There are two steps to delete CrashPlan account. First, you need to cancel your subscription then you need to deactivate your Crashplan account.
i) Cancel Subscription –
a) Sign in to the CrashPlan administration console
b) Go to Account.
c) Select Manage My Subscription.
d) Select Details for your current subscription.
e) For Automatic Renewals, select Off.
f) In the Stop Automatic Billing window, select Yes.
Refresh the page to see the changes.
ii) Deactivate the account-
For this, you need to contact the support via ticket or chat. You have send mail from the registered email.