Backblaze backups: Initial impressions

Welcome back! I received an email this week from CrashPlan (CrashPlan for small business account) that they will no longer be supporting backups with such extensions as OVA, VMK, VMDK, etc. This knocks out several of my backups (OVAs are what I use from my ESXI system) and will make my online backups no longer effective.

This is a big deal to me since I store copies of my of my VMs in cold storage off site (safe boxes, ftw) along with cloud backups. Without this, I lose some redundancy and some peace of mind. I made the move to Backblaze.

Backblaze is one of Crashplan’s biggest rivals in the backups area. They also offer a 15 day trial to test and see how everything works. Spoiler: It’s crazy how easy and quickly you can get started. In 2 days: I’ve built a new backups VM, mapped it as a network drive, migrated ~800GB of backups onto it and it’s already done almost 500GB of backups in that short time. Crashplan took weeks to even upload 150GB and was only running at about 10mbs (yes, seriously, it’s megabits not bytes) and when I reached out they said this was normal. Backblaze, however, is running about 20-25MBs (bytes here) continuously and is hammering away at the backups at a very efficient speed.

Couple things to note: The GUI for it is smooth and quick. Crashplan’s was constantly sluggish and locking up on the same hardware (ESXI VM with 4 cpu cores, 4GB of RAM and 2TB of disk space). One thing I’m not keen on is that it backs up your entire OS drive but this isn’t a big deal, just an oddity to me that you can’t dial back the folders to backup.

TL;DR: I’ll probably be buying a subscription to Backblaze. Crashplan was 10 bucks a month and was slow and inefficient. Backblaze is 50/year (or 6/month) and definitely works better. Cheers!

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