So you’ve got several gigabytes of digital photos, plus lots of important documents and maybe some irreplaceable home movies of the family.
JungleDisk.com is an inexpensive service that allows anyone with a broadband connection to easily create a backup of their data on remote servers on the internet. Just sign up for an account then download the client for your OS (Windows. Mac and Linux versions are all available). A single account allows you to install clients on as many machines as you like too and your data is encrypted before it leaves your computer (using 256-bit AES) and stays encrypted while stored.
The client can be configured to perform automatic backups of your files and/or be setup so your JungleDisk appears just like any normal network drive. You can then use your favourite file sync’ing software – think SyncBack (Windows), ChronoSync (Mac), rsync (*nix) to perform more sophisticated backup routines plus normal drag and drop opperations etc all work great too.
In our test we sent just over 7GBs up to the JungleDisk servers (if you can get away with 2GB or less then grab yourself a free DropBox account). We have a decent broadband connection on an un-bundled exchange so we get around 1 megabit per second up meaning the 7GB backup took around a day to complete. Subsequent backups only update the changed or new files so are much smaller. There’s no minimum or maxium space requirement (there is a 5GB limit on a single file). Restoring your data is as simple as backing it up, all easily available through the client or your own software.
Once in the Cloud You can access your files from any web browser simply by loging into the myjungledisk.com service. Unlike DropBox you cannot curently give public access to your files, although it sounds like JungleDisk are considering adding this feature.
So whats the price of this piece of mind then? Surprisingly affordable – $2.00 per month plus $0.15 per GB-month of storage used. As an example, 10GBs of storage works out at $3.50 (around £2.50) per month using the “Rackspace Cloud Files Service” to store your data. You can also choose the Amazon S3 system if you prefer, although this has a slightly higher price as it’s based on your traffic volume up and down as well as the storage space used.
While it’s probably not the service for backing up your 6 terabytes movie collection – those are relatively easily replaced though, right – it certainly is a superbly simple, elegant and affordable way to ensure your most important digital assets are safe and secure.