Many ex-CrashPlan for Home users have moved to Backblaze over the last year. We gave them a reliable, set-and-forget backup experience for the amazing price of $5/month per computer. Yet some people wanted features such as network share backup and CrashPlan’s rollback policy, and Arq Backup can provide those capabilities. So we asked Stefan Reitshamer of Arq to tell us about his solution.
by Stefan Reitshamer, Founder, Arq Backup
CrashPlan for Home is gone — no more backups to CrashPlan and no more ability to restore from your old backups. Time to find an alternative!
Arq + Backblaze B2 = CrashPlan Home
If you’re looking for many of the same features as CrashPlan plus affordable storage, Arq + B2 cloud storage is a great option. MacWorld’s review of Arq called it “more reliable and easier to use than CrashPlan.”
Just like CrashPlan for Home, Arq lets you choose your own encryption password. Everything is encrypted before it leaves your computer, with a password that only you know.
Also just like CrashPlan for Home, Arq keeps all backups forever by default. Optionally you can tell it to “thin” your backup records from hourly to daily to weekly as they age, similar to the way Time Machine does it. And/or you can set a budget and Arq will periodically delete the oldest backup records to keep your costs under control.
With Arq you can back up whatever you want — no limits. Back up your external hard drives, network shares, etc. Arq won’t delete backups of an external drive no matter how long it’s been since you’ve connected it to your computer.
The license for Arq is a one-time cost and, if you use multiple Macs and/or PCs, one license covers all of them. The pricing for B2 storage is a fraction of the cost of any scale cloud storage provider — just $0.005/GB per month and the first 10GB is free. To put that in context, that’s 1/4th the price of Amazon S3. The savings becomes more pronounced if/when you need to restore your files. B2 only charges a flat rate of $0.01/GB for data download, and you get 1 GB of downloads free every day. By contract, Amazon S3 has tiered pricing that starts at 9 times that of B2.
Arq’s Advanced Features
Arq is a mature product with plenty of advanced features:
- You can tell Arq to pause backups whenever you’re on battery.
- You can tell Arq to pause backups during a certain time window every day.
- You can tell Arq to keep your computer awake until it finishes the backup.
- You can restrict which Wi-Fi networks and which network interfaces Arq uses for backup.
- You can restrict how much bandwidth Arq uses when backing up.
- You can configure Arq to send you email every time it finishes backing up, or only if there were errors during backup.
- You can configure Arq to run a script before and/or after backup.
- You can configure Arq to back up to multiple B2 accounts if you wish. Back up different folders to different B2 accounts, configure different schedules for each B2 account, etc.
Arq is fully compatible with B2. You can configure it with your B2 account ID and master application key, or you can use B2’s new application keys feature to restrict which bucket(s) Arq can write to.
Privacy and Control
With Arq and B2 storage, you keep control of your data because it’s your B2 account and your encryption password — even if an attacker got access to the B2 data they wouldn’t be able to read your encrypted files. Your backups are stored in an open, documented format. There’s even an open-source restore tool.