What’s up with Backzup?
On 14th December 2011 I signed up for a free 512Gb online backup account at Backzup. I was initially doubtful that the service could provide that amount of free backup, but it worked well. Backzup is (was?) a Livedrive re-seller, so the software you download is from Livedrive, and you use the Livedrive web site to manage or access your backup.
My reason for trying Backzup was a problem with my Carbonite account. I have used Carbonite for my online backup needs for over two years, and while the service has previously worked well I have now hit the point where Carbonite are throttling my backup so much it’s impossible to use. When I recently upgraded my server hackintosh I moved all the files from the old server to the new one using the Mac Migration Assistant. When I re-installed the Carbonite software on the new server and transfered the backup account the old backup set was retained, and a new one started. The backup set contains 189Gb, so the old 189Gb remained on the Carbonite servers and a new 189Gb backup was started. Carbonite slow down your backup once it gets too big, so mine is wallowing at around 300Gb with over 70Gb remaining. The upload speed is now limited to around 100kbit/second, so I am now waiting for 30 days since the old backup was last seen. At that time the old backup should be deleted, and I can finish the new backup in a reasonable time.
Backzup sounded like an ideal solution, offering 512Gb for free with no upload speed limits. I completed the initial backup of 204Gb in five days, which included suspending the backup a few times to do other things. The service then worked without issue until the 1st January 2012, when the Livedrive software reported it could not log into the account. My attempts to access the Livedrive web site returned a message that the account was suspended, but there is no way to contact Livedrive as I need to log into the account to access their support system. This happened at the point when I was considering upgrading to one of Backzup’s paid accounts, not for the extra space but to pay something for a good service.
I emailed Backzup on 1st January, then waited a few days. Backzup claim they will respond within 24 hours, but it was New Year’s day followed by a bank holiday so I allowed a few days. I received no response to the request for help, so emailed Backzup again on January 5th. I have still not had a reply, so it looks like Backzup are (despite their site providing no information) no longer a viable online backup provider. My searches since the account was disabled have also turned up some worrying tales concerning Livedrive.
I haven’t lost a lot of money directly in this, other than the cost of running the server continuously for five day. It is irritating to get no response from Backzup, after this was posted on their blog on 20th December 2011:
Commenting on the few initial reports about the company, Hernandez said, “Immediately after our launch, we were given some bad reviews by a few blogs, which were totally based on skepticism about our free 512 GB plan. This is cruel and can be threatening to the reputation of a company that is just launching. Despite these hardships, Backzup was able to win the love and trust of over 20,000 people due to its excellent service and world class customer support.
It’s starting to look like the “cruel skepticism” may be justified. As one of those 20,000 people I’m not feeling much love or trust for Backzup at the moment. I would much prefer to be writing a report on how great the Backzup service is, but unless they respond to my requests for help I can’t recommend Backzup.