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SpiderOak One Backup review

IT proportal 2020-08-18 14:30:11

If you’re looking for a cloud backup software that puts your data security first, it’s worth considering SpiderOak One Backup. This cloud storage service boasts zero-knowledge, end-to-end encryption and a highly secure system for sharing files. Plus, you get unlimited file versioning so you’re always prepared in case of a malware attack.

Unfortunately, SpiderOak One comes at a premium price and it’s missing automatic mobile backups. In our SpiderOak One Backup review, we’ll take a closer look at whether this platform is worth the cost.

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SpiderOak One features 

SpiderOak One offers the ability to back up your files and sync them separately so that you have complete control over your cloud space.

To create backups in the cloud from your desktop, simply tag any individual file or directory within your file system within the software. You can back up files from any connected drive, including network drives. Even better, you can add any tagged files to a backup schedule. There are 10 different backup schedules available, ranging in frequency from every five minutes to every two days.

The sync function is even more advanced. You can drag and drop files into a sync folder on your hard drive and SpiderOak One will update them in real-time across your devices. All uploads use block-level sync, meaning that only the data that has been changed in the file since the last sync is uploaded again. If you find yourself needing to save bandwidth, you can also choose to limit the sync frequency. 

Notably, the software also has a secondary sync folder called the Hive. This serves as a hub for files you want to keep in the cloud only, but need to be able to access quickly on your computer. The advantage of this folder is that you can free up space on your hard drive, but still access files from your cloud for local editing whenever you need them.

SpiderOak One also has a built-in tool for sharing files with friends, family, and collaborators. This is a bit unique in that you don’t simply create links to individual files. Instead, you can create shared file rooms, which are essentially encrypted folders. This structure is excellent for working in small teams, since everyone can access a whole folder’s worth of files at once. But, if you just want to share a single file quickly, it can feel like a bit of a cumbersome mechanism for file sharing.

Setting up a shared file room from SpiderOak One Backup.   (Image credit: SpiderOak)

Another feature we loved about SpiderOak One is that the software enables you to save an unlimited number of versions of backed up and synced files. While these backups can use up a significant amount of storage space, they also ensure that you’re prepared to weather a malware attack. The software can easily restore your computer to a specific point in time using the saved versions of your file library. 

SpiderOak One interface 

SpiderOak One offers desktop apps for Windows, Mac, and Linux computers. The interface is sleek, modern, and extremely easy to use. We appreciated that the software offers its own file navigation pane, which makes it simple to tag files for upload and add them to a backup schedule. There’s also a file sharing tab within the desktop app where you can manage your shared rooms.

The SpiderOak One Backup desktop interface on Mac.   (Image credit: SpiderOak)

The web interface for One Backup is much less impressive. You can access your files for download from it, but don’t expect online editing tools or a comprehensive search function. In many ways, browser-based access to your files seems like an afterthought.

Unfortunately, SpiderOak hasn’t fully recognized the importance of mobile backups for many users, either. The platform comes with iOS and Android mobile apps. But these apps only let you view and download files that are already backed up to your cloud space. You cannot upload photos, videos, contacts, or other data from your mobile devices to your One Backup cloud space.

SpiderOak One security 

Security is one of SpiderOak One’s key strengths. This cloud storage service uses end-to-end encryption for all uploads, meaning that your files are encrypted before they ever leave your computer. In addition, you’re the only one with your encryption key—even SpiderOak doesn’t have it. You’ll need to be careful not to lose or forget your account password, since there is no way to recover your files if you do.

It’s also important to keep in mind that share rooms aren’t encrypted like the remainder of your cloud storage space. Only invited collaborators should be able to see your files inside the room, but if those files are downloaded they will be unencrypted during the transfer.

Selecting folders for backup to the SpiderOak One cloud.  (Image credit: SpiderOak)

For all of SpiderOak’s attention to file security, the platform is missing a simple but critical feature: two-factor authentication. You can’t turn on authentication for your account login, which makes your password all the more important. If you’re worried about a break-in, though, you can monitor your account activity using the built-in data logger.  

SpiderOak One pricing 

SpiderOak One is one of the more expensive cloud storage services on the market. Plans start at $6 per month or $69 per year for 150 GB of storage space, which isn’t all that large. A 400 GB plan costs $11 per month, while a 2 TB plan costs $14 per year. If you need more space, SpiderOak’s highest capacity plan is 5 TB for $29 per month. 

SpiderOak One Backup pricing options.  (Image credit: SpiderOak )

All plans enable you to connect an unlimited number of devices, but SpiderOak doesn’t offer plans larger than 5 TB for business users. 

SpiderOak One verdict 

SpiderOak One Backup handles backup and sync extremely well for those who need to keep files coordinated across multiple computers. Having the ability to sync files in real-time and create high-frequency scheduled backups can come in handy, especially when working in small teams. Plus, SpiderOak One’s advanced security features add to the allure of this platform for working with sensitive files.

However, SpiderOak One is missing a few features that seem like they should be obvious. For all its security, the software doesn’t enable two-factor authentication. Despite the quality of its desktop apps, SpiderOak One’s mobile apps cannot be used to backup data from your mobile devices.

These flaws might be forgivable, but they do detract a bit from the platform. Given the high price for SpiderOak One Backup, it’s a difficult proposition to accept anything less than perfect.