SOS Online Backup

SOS Online Backup
Rating
Overall:  Not yet rated

A low cost way of securing smaller amounts of data.

Price
Price: $45
> Pricing info
Specs
Requirements Windows ME, 2000, XP (inc SP1 and SP2), and Server 2003. From $45 (500MB storage) annually.

Store your precious data online, safely.

SOS's goal is to provide safe, simple and efficient offsite backup via the Internet using a combination of differencing, compression and encryption. This allows the recovery of multiple versions while minimising data traffic and storage space.

The client software presents three steps to protection: select files, schedule backup, and backup now. Our favourite method for selecting a file or folder is to right-click an item in Explorer and select Protect with SOS, but there's also a tree view within SOS, a drag-and-drop interface, and options to help choose common folders and filetypes. Unwanted file types (for example, MP3) can be excluded from backup.

Scheduled operation eliminates error-prone human involvement. SOS offers daily, weekly or monthly backups, and once that's set just leave the computer switched on and logged in, though we found scheduled backups only happened if the Perform Missed Backups option was selected.

SOS mostly worked well, but it would erroneously detect changes in certain files, generating a new version during each backup. We recovered two versions -- a straightforward process -- and confirmed the contents were identical. Safe OffSite has traced the problem to a Windows API function and is testing an alternative.

There are some cosmetic blemishes, such as displaying the elapsed time as '3:2' instead of '3:02', additional SOS icons appearing in the system tray during manual backups and not disappearing until the mouse rolled over them, and a default window size that's just too small for some of its content. However, given the rapid development by the team at SOS, many of these bugs could be ironed out by the time your read this.

Safe OffSite also provides web access to protected files, making it easier to recover files after a disaster and permitting sharing with other people.

The software is generally easy to use and is affordable for saving essential data such as a small business's accounting files, uni assignments, your unfinished novel or a modest digital photo album.

More info here: www.safeoffsite.com.au

This Review appeared in the March, 2006 issue of PC & Tech Authority Magazine

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