SpiderOak Review

Introduction
People generally want to do three things with their files: access them from wherever they are with whatever device they have in front of them, ensure their privacy and safety from deletion, and share them with their friends or colleagues. However, with so few online file services offering true privacy—instead toting “usability” as their main feature—some companies forget that people want privacy, as well as safety.

SpiderOak is different. They offer secure online backup, storage, and access to all of its users. Because no part of the cloud ever stores a user’s password or plaintext encryption, not even SpiderOak executives have access to your most precious files. Add to this the notion of a centralized data plan that spans across all possible platforms and devices, and the fact that SpiderOak never truly deletes stored files (in case of accidental deletions – files can be retrieved from the ‘Recycle’ bin), and SpiderOak squeaks ahead of the competition in the services they provide. However, a warning for novice users: SpiderOak does not come with a wizard or integrated complete hand-holding guide; you have to learn to backup and restore files on your own.

Features of SpiderOak

No matter which plan you choose to use, SpiderOak offers you unlimited computer coverage. Your file repositories can be synced and shared online or backed up, with each version saved forever. SpiderOak also backs up external and network drives and allows you the option to merge many folders into one target.

Pros:

Plans
SpiderOak’s philosophy to plans is simple: they will only bill you for the amount of storage you use. They offer a free account and a plus account:

SpiderOak 2 GB Free Account

  • 2 GB of space for life, free.

SpiderOak Plus (+) Account

  • 100+ GB of space for $10 per month per 100 GB increment (or $100 per year per 100 GB increment)

Each of their plans includes the ability to backup, sync, share, access, and store your files, from an unlimited amount of computers.

Backup Speed
Keeping in mind that your internet connection, geographical location, and bandwidth allowance greatly affects speed, SpiderOak customers with DSL/Broadband connections can expect ranges from 10 GB – 15 GB per 24 hours. That is pretty speedy, especially when considering that you get the same speed whether you use the free account or the Plus account!

Long-Term Retention
Users can feel safe in knowing that the older versions of their documents are saved, too. That way, if an important document was badly damaged or a part of it was deleted, a user can simply revert back to an older copy.

Security
SpiderOak is in another league of security. While other services promise confidentiality because their files are transferred with SSL security and AES-256 encryption, employees can still view file names for support purposes. When your data is encrypted with SpiderOak, it’s done using a private encryption key of which the password is saved only on your computer.

Click & Save (Drag & Drop Evolution)
It is the evolution of the simple ‘drag & drop’ technique. With SpiderOak, users can select data which they choose to back up simply by using their folder hierarchy accessed from the ‘Backup’ tab. Then, SpiderOak uploads a mirror copy of each selection made to their servers. In other words, they have changed ‘drag & drop’ to ‘click & save’.

Simple File Sharing

SpiderOak pushes the limits of making file-sharing simple. Once the selected folders upload or backup to the SpiderOak cloud, a user can select whichever folder they want from any number of machines to place in a ShareRoom. How do you access a ShareRoom? Simple: you email out a secure link or share your ShareID and RoomKey for that particular share to whoever you would like to share with. Also, shares are updated in real time. It’s that simple!

Customer Support
When you email support, you don’t get an automated response that turns you around in circles, you get a real live human who helps to address your queries or concerns. Of course, most queries can be solved by browsing their fairly well-stocked FAQ page. And SpiderOak does not outsource customer service, the CEO and SpiderOak founders often respond personally to a customer’s concerns.

Cons:

Zero-Knowledge not always a Pro
Just because something makes you safe, does not always mean that it will be the most convenient. Due to its architecture, SpiderOak doesn’t store encryption, deduplication, syn calculations, or chunking on their cloud, meaning your computer has to take care of this. This can suck up valuable CPU and memory usage.

The Bottom Line

Although sometimes SpiderOak allows security to get in the way of functionality, leading CPU and memory usage to be drained, it is still the best bang-for-your-buck service for backing up and sharing files in the most secure way.

To sign in and for further information, visit SpiderOak.

Plans & Pricing
Free Account:
2GB for FREE
Plus Account:
10$/month per 100GB increment
100$/year per 100GB increment
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