{ “passion”: [“software development”,”cloud computing”,”architecture”,”agile”, “leadership”, “machine learning” ]}

Goodbye Carbonite – Hello Mozy

I have or should say had been a Carbonite user for almost an year but issues after issues finally got to me and the lack of new features that were long promised but never delivered forced me to start looking at the automated online backup again and I am so glad I did, as I’ve found Mozy. I’ve had numerous problems with Carbonite and their customer service was crappy. So I decided to give up on Carbonite even though I had already pre-paid for 2 years – I guess it’s better to lose $80.00 than all your data.

Mozy is similar to Carbonite in some regards but has a much richer feature set that makes it a better offering. Like Carbonite, Mozy installs a small client on your Windows XP/Vista or OS X desktop that runs in the background and backs up files over the Internet using your broadband connection. But that’s where the similarities end. Carbonite is a fairly bare-bones offering which may be ok for most novice users but Mozy offers several configuration options like creation of backup sets, file versions, access to your files via the web and many other features.

One of the best and most important feature that set Mozy and Carbonite apart is the fact that you can actually get your backed files back. Wow! What a concept – I know I know. When I first installed Carbonite, I did several test restores and they worked fine but when I had been backing up for several months and really need to restore something, Carbonite let me down. Mozy on the other hand has never done that. Another awesome feature of Mozy is that fact they don’t really throttle your bandwidth after you’ve uploaded 50 GB. Carbonite seems to limit upload bandwidth to about 2 GB a day and then throttle it down after you reach 50 GB. Mozy doesn’t seem to play any of those games and allows uploads that are supported by your bandwidth. On an average day, I think I was uploading about 5+ GB.

Another recent event that makes Mozy even more attractive to me is the purchase of Berkeley Data Systems, providers of Mozy online backup by EMC Corporation. As you probably know, EMC is the leader is the storage market and owns Documentum, VMWare, and RSA among other technology companies.

So if you are looking for a great, reliable and affordable backup solution for your home computer, you should check out Mozy.

173 comments… add one
  • Good to see you finally come to your senses on this one Vinny 🙂 I’ve been using Mozy for over a year now and have had a great experience. Maybe this is why Walt Mossberg at the Journal picked Mozy over Carbonite?

    Reply
  • Hi David and thanks. I know what you mean 🙂 Finally came to my sense — Mozy just rocks and I wish I had discovered it before I wasted my time and money with Carbonite. Floyd Marinescu, who is the co-founder of infoq.com (among many other things) got me hooked on Mozy. I guess better late than never 🙂 Cheers.

    Reply
  • Vinny –

    Thanks for this post. I’ve been using carbonite for almost a year, and I’ve been consistently irritated with the poor customer support and the lack of updates. Case in point: the Carbonite website claims that the current version of the software is 3.0.194 (which is supposed to have new Mozy-like features), dating back to August 29. But if go to the manual install section of the Carbonite website, the only version available for download is 2.3.181 – dating back to July 5!!!

    That is to say, Carbonite can’t even manage to make the latest version of its software available to current users! And yes, I’ve emailed carbonite customer service about this problem … and they haven’t responded. Not. at. all.

    Unfortunately, I’m overseas, and backing-up online is really slow. So, I’ll have to wait until my next trip home to the US to buy Mozy. But believe me, I will buy. Thanks again for the helpful post.

    Reply
  • Why are you guys trashing Carbonite? Do you all work for Mozy or something? I just checked the version of Carbonite running on my PC and it is version 3.0.212. It gets upgraded automatically in the background, apparently, because I have never had to install an upgrade. And it works reliably and I’ve never had to even think about it. And when I contacted their customer support with a question, they got right back.

    Hans

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    • I'm trying to restore my files from Carbonite. It's been almost a week now and I still don't have my files back!

      Reply
  • I’m Carbonite’s CEO. Carbonite does NOT throttle upload speeds to 2GB per day. If your Internet connection is fast enough you should be able to upload at least 5GB per day. Most people don’t realize that their Internet speeds are asymmetrical. We measure our customers’ upload speeds, and the average is 254kbps — that’s typical for DSL or home cable connections and it equates to about 2GB per day. That is the guidance we give customers on our web site, so perhaps that’s where you got that impression. There is no 50GB throttling limit — we did have that in place briefly last year but today you get the same high speed no matter how big your backup.

    Like most professionally managed customer support organizations, we survey customers every week to find out if they had a good experience with our customer support. 92% rate our customer support “good” or “very good”. 99+% of customer issues are resolved within one business day. By software industry standards, that’s a very good number. If someone is really unhappy, my direct email address is on our web site and I invite anyone who feels they didn’t get good service to contact me personally.

    Reply
  • Dear Mr. Friend – I find it interesting that you responded to Vinny’s complaint – but not mine. So I will repeat it: why isn’t the latest version of Carbonite available for download on the carbonite website? The website claims that the newest version of the software is 3.0.194 — released August 29, 2007.

    For some reason, though, my software has NOT been automatically upgraded to this version. Instead, it is still running version 2.3.181. I checked the Carbonite website, and it claims that I can manually install the current version. Here are the instructions as provided:

    “Whether you use XP or Vista, you can manually upgrade to the latest release. Just log in to your account from your Carbonite-protected PC. Click the ‘My Protected Computers’ tab, then click the ‘Reinstall’ button and follow the instructions.”

    Well, I clicked the “Reinstall” button and followed the instructions. And guess what? The version that I downloaded was 2.3.181!!! That’s the version released on July 5, 2007.

    This wouldn’t bother me much if I hadn’t inquired about this problem on September 10 — more than one month ago. (check your customer service logs). And on that date – more than one month ago – I received a customer support reply explaining that Carbonite was still pushing out version 3.0.194. Then, as I just did a few minutes ago, I tried manually upgrading, but was only able to download the older version of the software.

    I’m only speculating here, but my reporter’s intuition tells me that Carbonite 3.0 is a flawed piece of software that the company is holding back while it fixes bugs. This wouldn’t be a problem, ordinarily, except that Carbonite announced the new version with a breathless press release on August 28 and posted an announcement of the new version on the website. So, instead of distributing the improperly tested software, the company decided to continue distributing version 2.3.181 until the flawed 3.0 version could be de-bugged — all the while hoping that nobody noticed.

    Well, I’ve noticed.

    If there’s another reason why the company is distributing an older version of the software – manually – instead of the one that it promotes as a much improved version, I’d be open to hearing it (I’m a customer, and you can certainly send your response to my private email).

    Finally, a few months ago I sent an email to your address, Mr. Friend – and received a reply from one of your tech support staff.

    AdamM

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  • Adam: When we roll out a new release, we don’t upgrade everyone at once. This is fairly standard practice in distributing upgrades of new releases. No matter now much testing you do in beta, there is always a chance for a bug to slip by that only shows up after the release is in production. So most companies like us don’t upgrade their entire customer base in one shot — they upgrade perhaps 10%, watch for week, then upgrade more. So far we have upgraded about 70% of our users with the remainder to be upgraded this week. You should notice version 3 running on your PC by the end of the week.

    New users get the latest 3.0 version. If you are an existing user and you reinstall, you do not get automatically upgraded. There is a version flag on your account in our database. When we update your version flag, you get the new version. Until that time, we reinstall the release that’s in the database for your account.

    As for the [email protected] email address, since I am on the road a good deal of time, I have instructed customer support to triage my incoming messages and handle them as quickly as possible. Anything that customer support cannot handle or that they think requires my personal attention gets forwarded to me. I would hope that the response you got was prompt and appropriate. If you want a messsage to only be answered by me personally, please just say so in the email. Meanwhile I’ll make sure that customer support understands the phased rollout of new releases. Thanks for taking the time to point this out.

    Regards,

    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, inc.
    Carbonite Online Backup

    Reply
  • Why are you guys trashing Carbonite? Do you all work for Mozy or something? I just checked the version of Carbonite running on my PC and it is version 3.0.212. It gets upgraded automatically in the background, apparently, because I have never had to install an upgrade. And it works reliably and I’ve never had to even think about it. And when I contacted their customer support with a question, they got right back.

    Hi Hans. I don’t work for Mozy – I happen to like it much better than Carbonite. I’ve had several problems and I spent WEEKS with customer support and never got resolution and so I’m giving up and going to something that works better. I am glad your experience was better than mine.

    Reply
  • Hi Dave and thanks for your comments.

    I’m Carbonite’s CEO. Carbonite does NOT throttle upload speeds to 2GB per day. If your Internet connection is fast enough you should be able to upload at least 5GB per day. Most people don’t realize that their Internet speeds are asymmetrical. We measure our customers upload speeds, and the average is 254kbps – that’s typical for DSL or home cable connections and it equates to about 2GB per day. That is the guidance we give customers on our web site, so perhaps that’s where you got that impression. There is no 50GB throttling limit – we did have that in place briefly last year but today you get the same high speed no matter how big your backup.

    I am glad you’ve changed your policies and have stopped throttling upload speed.

    Like most professionally managed customer support organizations, we survey customers every week to find out if they had a good experience with our customer support. 92% rate our customer support good or very good. 99+% of customer issues are resolved within one business day. By software industry standards, that’s a very good number. If someone is really unhappy, my direct email address is on our web site and I invite anyone who feels they didn’t get good service to contact me personally.

    I am surprised to hear that 99+% of your issues are resolved within one business day. My experience was quite different — I spent several weeks with support to get my files restored and I finally gave up and moved to Mozy, forfeiting the money I had prepaid for 2 years. Maybe you’ve finally heard from customers and dedicated more resources to supports. I wish you guys luck. Cheers

    Reply
  • Dave –

    Thanks for the response … and the upgrade. This morning, when I turned on my laptop, a notice popped up announcing that a free Carbonite upgrade was available for download. Now that’s what I call responsive customer service!

    Thanks for that.

    However, I’d like to clarify one last matter. In your response to my note, you write:

    “New users get the latest 3.0 version. If you are an existing user and you reinstall, you do not get automatically upgraded. There is a version flag on your account in our database. When we update your version flag, you get the new version. Until that time, we reinstall the release that’s in the database for your account.”

    Alas, this statement is totally at odds with the instructions given in Carbonite’s online Customer Service Center. There, in answer to the question ‘How do I get the latest version?’ your site offers this instruction:

    “Whether you use XP or Vista, you can manually upgrade to the latest release. Just log in to your account from your Carbonite-protected PC. Click the ‘My Protected Computers’ tab, then click the ‘Reinstall’ button and follow the instructions.”

    Quite honestly, Mr. Friend, I never would have posted any of my complaints if the Customer Service section of your site had stated what you just posted to this blog. Hopefully, you’ll update it for your other customers.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond, and best of luck with your company.

    AdamM

    Reply
  • You’re right, Adam. The info on the web site is wrong about the upgrades. We’ll make it correct. Thanks.

    Dave

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  • Interesting. I tried Carbonite a few months ago, after finding a friend was using it; unfortunately, it didn’t even install successfully – worse, it left the client *half*-installed, with the Explorer shell extension in place but no backup facility! I did use the option to report the problem to customer service, which was apparently supposed to contact me to resolve this but didn’t; I think I’ve manually scraped the bits of Carbonite off my system now, since neither the installer nor uninstaller worked.

    Mozy, on the other hand, quite happily backed up 3.3Gb of data in the background without a hiccup (or even a reboot); my MacBook has backed up a further 5.5Gb. The indicated speed fluctuates a fair bit for me, with the Mac peaking at 130Kb/sec while the XP PC next to it has hit 1.1 Mb/sec on the same connection. (Presumably either the beta Mac client has some limitation the PC client doesn’t, or it’s using Kbyte/sec while the PC one shows Kbit/sec?)

    I haven’t tried a restore with Mozy yet, but I already know it’s managed to get much further than Carbonite ever attempted!

    Reply
  • Hey Vinny, glad to see that my couple of lines about block level updates and outlook were convincing.

    I was very happy with Mozy until I upgraded to Vista. Vista appears to be quite buggy and my computer crashes quite often. Whenever Vista restarts, Mozy for some reason sees fit to start scanning all my PST files even though I configured it to never run unless the computer is idle. Quite annoying, but other than that it’s a great product. 🙂

    I think I’ll switch back to XP. 🙂

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  • Is there a way to restore files on Mozy that’s fast? What’s a reasonable period of time to get files retrieved. i tried retrieving two files and they weren’t ready until the next morning. Also, they don’t seem to be put back in the same folders from which they were deleted. Am I missing something?

    Reply
  • Ron Vargas – There is another way to restore files using Mozy. The client app allows you to open My Computer and then the Mozy Virtual Drive and select any file you want, right click and then either restore to default location or restore to alternate location. That’s the fastest way to restore small numbers of files like you mentioned. Hope that helps at least a little.

    Reply
  • Dear Vinnie,

    I have emailed Carbonite 3 times in as many days about a faulty restore. I can’t get a reply from them. I have lost over 300 important addresses in my address book (also, favorites folder). Today will be my fourth attempt and I will address it to David Friend as revealed in your blog. Thanks, Vinny, for your great blog and I will check out Mozy as my experience with Carbonite in getting a new computer up and running has been very frustrating.

    I should add that I am a writer and author and I did get all my files in MS Word back and operational. That meant a great deal to me. However, that was not that critical as I had those files backed up on disk anyway because of my distrust of any internet BU system.

    Thanks, and have a great day,

    Charlie
    Mesquite, NV

    Reply
  • Hi Charles,

    I see that you’ve been in communication recently with Rosanne from Carbonite and that you were able to import your Outlook file successfully after restoring. Please let us know if you need any additional assistance.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Charles: I saw your post and sent an e-mail to follow up. I wanted to find out if your problem was resolved and what your experience was in dealing with Carbonite Customer Support. I trust the problem was resolved, but please let me know.

    Dave

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  • To Mr. Friend – I have a big frustration with Carbonite’s periodic downloading throughout my working hours – usually in the mid-PM and a bit later. While your program is running, it slows me down to a crawl. I have sent several e-mails to the lady contact for your company but no reply.

    While I haven’t tested access, I would be ok with trying the backups during the 1 AM to 5 AM period.

    Please advise what you can do to immediately rectify this – or how I may obtain a refund and cancel the subscription. Thank you, Julius

    Reply
  • Dear Julius,

    Are you sure it’s Carbonite doing this? Carbonite doesn’t run at specific times. It runs all the time in the background in very low priority mode. Next time you think this is happening, bring up the Windows Task Manager and check the processes. Look for the processes CarboniteService.exe and CarboniteUI.exe. I think you’ll see that neither of them are using more than 1 or 2% of your CPU. Feel free to contact me directly at [email protected].

    Regards,
    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite Online Backup

    Reply
  • If you try carbonite, it will never leave! I tried out and didn’t want it. I now want to remove client, but can’t do so. Carbonite makes it impossible to do an uninstall… Now I have this noisy client chewing up my CPU. Nothing from customer service on this. Grrrr….

    Reply
  • Hi Suzy,

    Are you having difficulty uninstalling Carbonite using the Add/Remove Programs control panel? (This control panel is called “Programs and Features” if you use Windows Vista.)

    In cases where folks have had difficulty uninstalling Carbonite from the control panel, usually reinstalling (even just a new free trial) first allows the Add/Remove Programs control panel to uninstall successfully.

    If that doesn’t resolve your issue, we can provide more detailed instructions on how to uninstall Carbonite manually. Have you written to [email protected]? If not, please do so – and if you have, please let me know if you have still not received a response from that address and I’ll track it down.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Mr. Friend:

    I must say that I’ve had an excellent experience so far. I’ve been only trying the service for a few days, but when I’ve e-mailed customer service with questions, I’ve had a quick and accurate answer (specifically from “John”). Very pleasant exception to the rule.

    I’m close to finishing up my initial backup, and we’ve been pushing about 3GB/day (a little more), even with moderate use on our computer.

    My wife loves that there’s nothing to do; it just does its job in the background. That adds a lot to the value, in my opinion.

    While I’m still early in the cycle of getting to know your service, so far what I see impresses me. I have several technophobic clients that I have a hard time getting them to even use external drive backups, because they don’t like leaving their machine on, or several other issues. This gives me an alternative.

    No, I don’t work for Carbonite. Mozy also has an excellent product. I’m just thinking about the human side of the equation, and for my neophyte and technophobe users, this is a terrific solution.

    -Richard

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  • Vinny –

    Great discussion you’ve started here between Mozy and Carbonite!

    Given that you’ve tried both products, I was wondering your thoughts about which is superior for backing up outlook PST files that are large and constantly changing – specifically, does either service allow you to not have to upload daily the entire huge PST file when just a small part of it changes.

    I’m currently using Connected.com (Iron Mountain), because when I signed up years ago, it seemed like the best service for dealing with such PST files. I’m on a slow DSL connection, so uploading a revised PST file that was >300 MBs every night was not possible, but I still wanted to make sure that the 1-5 MBs of info that changed daily was automatically backed up nightly. Connected’s client software only needs to upload the part of the PST file that has changed so it’s worked for me for years.

    However, Connected is more expensive than Mozy or Carbonite and lacks some features I would want, so I’m considering switching. I see that Mozy has “block-level incremental backups” – does that mean that it handles PST files in the same way Connected does?

    In short – I’d love to hear your thoughts on how using Mozy or Carbonite have affected your ease of backing up PST files, one of the most essential but difficult aspects for me personally in making sure my data is secure.

    Thanks!

    -Josh

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  • I’m so glad to see the CEO of a company patrolling the comments section of a website about his services. I wish this type of dialogue could happen more often. It almost makes me want to stay with Carbonite.

    I am about halfway through my free trial and was extremely disappointed to find out that Carbonite does not currently support external or networked drives. A very quick response from your customer service came back telling me that this feature was expected in an upcoming release within the next three months, but I don’t know if I can believe it.

    I think I may have to uninstall and use Mozy myself due to this fact. Why would you NOT support external drives from day 1?

    Thank you,
    Matt Klein

    Reply
  • Matt: Yes, release 3.5 which is now in beta supports external hard drives. if you’re a subscriber, you’ll be updated automatically in early February. As for network drives, that will be included in a future business-oriented release

    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • @Josh – I use Mozy and it backs up my huge Outlook .PST files without a hitch. It only uploads 1-2MB, so it must be able to integrate the changed parts of the file with the previously backed up version.

    I haven’t had to use it for real yet, but Mozy seems to work brilliantly. I like the option to manually throttle upload speeds at certain times of the day – it ensures my kids don’t suffer lag with our shared internet connection.

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  • @Josh – Carbonite performs incremental backups of files (such as your .PST file) once the file has been backed up initially, so just the changes to the file are transferred rather than the entire file. Carbonite uses the Windows VSS (Volume Shadow Service) component so that these changes can be backed up even if the file is in use at the time.

    Carbonite’s upcoming version 3.5 also includes a scheduling feature to allow automatic management of your bandwidth, so for example you can restrict backup to occur after hours.

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  • Reply
  • @Mark – please send an e-mail to customersupport (at) carbonite.com with ATTN: Len as the subject line and include your phone number and a good time to call, and I’ll have someone call you and walk you through uninstalling it manually. Alternately, you can try first reinstalling (even just a new free trial) and then use the control panel to uninstall. (In some cases, partially uninstalling a program, such as by deleting one of the installed files, can prevent the add/remove programs control panel from removing the program properly, but reinstalling first should correct issues like that. This is true of nearly any Windows program.)

    I’m sorry that you weren’t happy with Carbonite, and we can certainly help you remove it.

    Reply
  • I ran microsoft disk drive cleaner and it wiped out my entire hard drive even the os, it has been 3 days since that has happened and i still havent been able to download all my files from carbonite. not sure why but here i sit still waiting and nothing happening. sent an e mail to customer support but they said it will be 72 hours till they can get back to me. of course today is friday, so maybe some time by the end of next week i will hear from them.
    am pretty discouraged with the howard stern suggested corbonite

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  • I have been using Carbonite, and I do not understand the negativeness towards it that appears here.

    Granted if I ever have a disaster and my files aren’t able to be restored, I may feel upset like some are here, but that doesn’t seem to be an issue here with anyone.

    David, thank you for being part of the discussion here. However, on one matter, it seems there is a discrepency. You say the throttling at 50 GB has been removed. My computer CLEARLY slowed down the backup process at 50 GB. Not only that carbonites icon turned green like it was done, but it is SLOWLY getting all the video and other larger files in the background.

    But there was a definite change at 50 GB. Even though you say this isn’t the case. It is no big deal… but it is there.

    I see version 3.5 is coming with some good features. Namely the ability to pick ANY file type easily (having to select BACKUP VIDEOS in EVERY folder AND subfolder with videos is tedious and made not convenient at all. I am looking forward to this feature.

    The new dot updates on the folders is a welcome change as blue doesn’t mean much. As far as the scheduling system, I see that is part of Mozy, however, I am pretty happy just letting carbonite do its thing in the background. I have 4 GB or RAM and I don;t notice it.. at all. Period. So I hope the option to leave it coninuously backup the same as it doe snow is still available.

    The ONE thing that still would be tremendous and make Carbonite a home run is the ability to both RESTORE and SEE backed up files online on the web from any browser (so if you are elsewhere and want a picture file sent to a friends computer you can easily do this). I know there are other programs designed for that, and I use 2 of them, but since Carbonite has all your files online ANYWAY why not include this feature that just makes sense. The other thing on the same note, is how about ALSO include a way to share files.directories online and even allow uploading from guests or password holders? I use Mionet right now which allows this. However, in the plight to make sure you don’t do anything naughty, they restrict all of the common media file types from being shared (such as mp3, qt, mpg, etc). This is really stupid… and it really renders it useless for transferring files.. and media files are the most common. Not only that it relies on your computer being on and the Mionet client not to “break down.” If Carbonite had an online version of this, it would really be great as the program ewould go from just backup to online storage, backup and sharing., Making it more valuable and better. I hope this is planned for the future.

    Thats it.. I have no other quiffs at all aout Carbonite. Although I have my external drive (and carbonite cant back those up.. Hope that is fixed) and an offsite BluRay backup, it is great knowing that my files are sitting arond someplace in case everything gets real bad.

    And thanks for keeping the carbonite price very reasonable.

    Mike

    Reply
  • Mark: I found myself in a similar situation after Carbonite’s half-installation; since the customer support people never contacted me as promised, I scraped the registry entries off with HijackThis and deleted the files by hand.

    Len: Perhaps it would be helpful to provide a removal tool which will remove any Carbonite leftovers, whatever state the installation was in, since the standard uninstaller doesn’t seem to do the job for a lot of people?

    Tom: My Carbonite-using colleague got his user profile folder back after about 36 hours of restoring – depressingly slow, but it got the job done in the end. It did start re=storing almost straight away, though.

    Reply
  • When i started the restore it worked fine, then it started to slow down to the point where nothing at all is happening.I have had a 22kb excel file pending for 2 days now. I have canceled all restores and started a new restore of this 22kb file 2 days ago and nothing.
    Sure wish someone would help me get my files because im running a business and need my restored files to actually restore. Its been 4 days now and i am still not able to download from carbonite and still havent even gotten an e-mail from them.

    Reply
  • Mike:

    Thanks for the suggestion, and glad you like Carbonite. The problem with file sharing is that your files are stored in an encrypted state. We can’t read them. We don’t like handling unencrypted data for obvious reasons. If you wanted to share the contents of your Carbonite backup with other people, we would have to store your data unencrypted or you would have to give us permission to decrypt your files for you. People have their electronic banking files, emails, and lots of confidential information stored on Carbonite, not just harmless family pictures. Every time we do a customer survey and ask about this, once people think about the implications, they decide to leave well enough alone. The alternative, which is to segment the backup into “encrypted” and “unencrypted” areas, seems too complicated — too many decisions. I’d appreciate your thoughts on the tradeoffs. How would you feel about giving us permission to decrypt your files?

    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Guys: I have to concur with Mike. I think this is more of a religious war (like Apple vs. Microsoft) than a technical discussion. I looked at both products and picked Carbonite. If it didn’t do what I needed, I would have changed. Period. We’re not talking about one product that rocks and other stinks.

    They’re both decent products with slightly differing philosophies. Having used Carbonite for a few months, I’ve been happy. No impact on the machine (and the machine it backs up is a crusty old 2GHz Celeron). It’s recovered files for us.

    My wife uses the machine; she doesn’t want detailed technical control. It works. That’s the bottom line for her.

    If Mozy works for you, if you need or want the scheduling and other control it offers, then that’s terrific. I’ve seen the folks at Carbonite respond VERY quickly to my questions and requests; I’ve seen them respond with grace here to some fairly barbed comments. Given the quality of their responses and the direction of their new products, I’ll stay with them.

    If for some reason they change their direction or quality, I’ll look at the issue again. Still, I think the correct thinking is that they’re both good products, and each will meet a certain demographic better than the other.

    Kudos to both companies for making it so hard for us to choose!

    Reply
  • Tom, someone will be in touch with you immediately. I’m sorry the autoresponse threw you – we usually reply to messages within the first 24 hours, but we’ve had some heavy volume this week, mostly due to some phone problems. Those issues are nearly resolved and we’re catching up fast on the e-mail queue as well. We do have staff working evenings and weekends as well. I apologize for the delay, and I’m confident we’ll be able to resolve your issue quickly.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Dear Richard Berry,

    Carbonite’s new release 3.5 went live today. I believe we now have virtually every significant feature you’ll find in any other backup service, plus Carbonite’s award-winning ease-of-use.

    You mentioned scheduling — 3.5 not only allows you to pick when to back up, but also when NOT to back up. As you know, Carbonite normally provides real-time continous data protection — much better, we think, than batch jobs. However, you may not want backups going on at all during business hours — hence the “blackout” scheduling option in 3.5. So you can now specify “backup at xx:xx hours” or “Don’t back up between the hours of x and y.”

    With the new file versioning feature in Carbonite Release 3.5, Carbonite will automatically store multiple versions of files going back at least 90 days. If a file is accidentally overwritten, the user will be able to go back and restore previous versions.

    Carbonite users will also have more options when selecting files to be backed up in Carbonite. Not only can the user back up specific folders, but also file types within individual folders. You’ll see a new graphics look on the “Info Center” screen, plus some improvements to the Windows integration.

    With this release, Carbonite also allows users to keep their own encryption keys, a practice required by certain legal and healthcare users. You’ll also find also a nifty wizard to help with migration from XP to Vista — a common problem these days. There’s also optional support for external drives. You’ll also notice significant speed improvements — we don’t want anyone beating us on speed.

    You will get an automatic upgrade over the next week or so — we roll out new releases gradually. There will be a press release on our (new!) web site this week with details. The new web site, BTW, finally offers the ability to purchase multiple subscriptions with one transaction.

    You’ll also be pleased to know that we’re about to launch our new Boston call center with the latest (and hugely expensive) Cisco call center equipment. We will have much better visibility into call queues and call processing times. Our recently launched Talisma customer support system has allowed us to make enormous improvements in customer support — over the last couple of months we’ve been able to get close to 100% of support emails resolved within 24 hours, with most resolved same business day.

    There is certainly a lot going on at Carbonite. Meanwhile, thank you for your measured and mature comments. We agree with you about the excellence of both products.

    Regards,

    David Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • David, thanks for the update! I think this will make the decision for others even harder! I love the “arms race” as each company strives to be the best: the winner is the customer, as it should be.

    It’s similar to Internet Explorer: Until Firefox came along, few improvements were offered. Once competition occurred, both browsers have continually improved. Ain’t the free market great?!

    Thanks again for a fine product.

    -Richard Berry

    Reply
  • Thanks carbonite support, i am up and running again, even over the weekend i recieved the support needed to get my restore working. Icant thank you enough for taking care of my problem with such speed i will continue to use carbonite and will refer carbonite.

    Reply
  • Tom – glad to hear it!

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • David,

    Firstly, I read about 3.5 and am looking forward to getting it. They are great features. I have 4 MB of RAM and never see ANY degredation with Caronite running. I can’t tell it is even running at all.. the way it should be… So the scheduling features I will not use, and have it conitnue to back up as files change.

    As far as what you said about encryption, it brings up a good point. Currently, I am using Mionet, which runs a client on the desktop and is java based if you want to access your files over the web. They say the files there are encrypted and safe, even with a web interface.

    I also run ORB which is for file serving but has a real rboust way to get anything off your computer and stream it. However, I am not sure about it’s security.

    In any case, with those products I don’t ened carbonite to have online access. It would just be nice to have it in the event you want to grab a file, without needing to run other options.

    But as you point out, if security is an issue, and there is no way around it, just leave it as is.

    And you have a great company. Thank you for all this information. In my company I read a lot of complaints as you do here as well, however, I always remember most people WONT stop and say THANKS or THATS GREAT. Although many passioante ones due.

    I started using carbonite because Dell Datasafe was a joke. They web interface wouldn’t load, you had no idea what was backed up, and finally when I went to upgrade, it didn’t work. At that time I looked at lots of other expensive options. And found you guys.

    Although there are comparisons to Mozy, I don’t know much about it, but I am happy with Carbonite. And your service and response to the public here is incredible.

    Now, I need to get more people referred!

    Thanks…..

    Mike (patiently waiting for 3.5)

    Reply
  • Mike: Mionet is a good product for remote access. I use it too. It’s actually a much better way to go than using your backup as a file sharing service. Mionet encrypts the transmission, so it’s pretty darned secure. There are many such products on the market and some of them are completely free.

    I also forgot to mention that Carbonite is now available in Spanish, in case you need it. Also Japanese, French, Portuguese, German, Chinese, and several others.

    Dave

    Reply
  • Oh… The One feature in 3.5 I am VERY MUCH looking forward to is the easier way to assign file extensions to be part of your backup that ar enot as a default.

    If there was one fault I feel with Carbonite in the past, it is the way you explicitly made it hard to backup video files.

    Besides them not being included in the normal backup which I understand as to limit your own storage space (although videos are such a part of peopels lives they should be included), with the old system you not had to go to a ROOT folder.. but to EVERY LITTLE SUBFOLDER to back video files up. I am sure it wouldnt have been too hard to code the program so selecting the main folder for Backup VIdeo In This Folder also did the subfolders. Because Going through EVERY one is a drag.

    Fortunately, with the new system, just selecting a few extensions should fix that issue. I was not happy about the ld way, as it seemed to be an obvious way for Carbonite to save on backup space on their servers from being used.

    Not a major complaint… but Thanks for fixing.

    Reply
  • FYI, Mozy DOES rate limit uploads.

    I am not pleased about this. I inquired about it and the response I got back from tech support was this: “If you’re getting 129 KB/s, you’re at the max. I’m sorry, but I can’t make it any faster. ”

    This fact is not mentioned anywhere in the FAQ and was not mentioned by support earlier in the game. I wish that I would have known this before. I have a 15mbit/15mbit FIOS package and have plenty of upstream bandwidth.

    Reply
  • Bob: Seems to me when I was trying Mozy I was getting better bandwidth than that — I seem to recall about 300kbps. But that was almost a year ago. Maybe they have changed their policy. I only have a cable Internet, but I generally get about 1mbps with Carbonite. Not sure how fast it would go if I had FIOS — 1mbps is about the speed of my connection.

    Reply
  • Mike: Yes, now with release 3.5 it’s easy to back up all your videos.

    I’ll tell you, though, videos create a problem when you have unlimited backup for a fixed price. People with Microsoft Media Center, for example, sometimes have hours and hours of TV shows that they don’t give a hoot about sitting on their often-enormous hard drives. Home movies, on the other hand, are exactly the kind of content that should be backed up. But the TV shows and movies are a problem. We have one user who has 1.4 terabytes of videos backed up with Carbonite. It probably costs us about $1200 per year to back up all this stuff, and the guy pays us $50. These kinds of users may eventually force service providers who offer unlimited backup to put some kind of limits on what constitutes “unlimited.” One “unlimted” service already stops you at 150GB, if you read the T&Cs. Another one has decided to throttle upload speeds so that it is just impractical to back up large amounts. I’d be curious to know what the readers of this blog think vendors like Carbonite should do if this problem gets out of hand.

    David Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • David.

    When I hear the word UNLIMITED, I expect unlimited… and others will too. Any fine print or restrictions in the TOS will just annoy people, pronbably to the point of finding another service. I am just stating what I see every day from dissatisfied customers where I work, which is not computer related but technology related.

    I think the UNLIMITED feature is definitely something that you need to keep. It is the biggest selling feature along with the affordable price.

    I do not know what it costs per GB in real money for you guys, but for every person backing 1.4 TB, there are probably dozens backing up under 50 GB.

    Unfortunately storage space, as you know from years of experience, will become more needed as we find new uses for the comptuer. I remember when you were king of the hill if you had a 10 MB (thats with an M!) hard drive.

    Since this is the case, I don’t think going backwards and limited is the way to go. You have the edge right now, and if the Yahoos and Googles ever ge tinto the online storage game.. which is still in its infancy, they surely have the resources to be unlimited. But you have the edge now to grab as many people as possible.

    Granted, I totally understand what you are saying about people that take advantage of the service. And my upload speed throttled down after 50 GB. I have about 150 GB of all sorts of things (not just videos those are few). it may take a long time to fully back up my machine. However, I don’t care, as the smaller files amd nost of the files backed up first, as important as these others are, they are not often used, like wiht most people, and they have low chance of being corrupted. Could by HD bite it before they are backed up? Sure… but it hasnt up til now, I still do daily backups locally as a secondary cover, and I know that EVENTUALLY they will make it over to you guys.

    You also protect yoursevles in other ways, which people may get irked over but I understand. You do not allow external drives to be backed up. That is FINE. That protects you from enormous possible backups as the bigest internal drive is MAYBE 2 TB right now. So you DO protect yourself of course as you know. I am fine with that, and other protections as we dont want you to go out of business. But the unlimited is a no brainer also. You don’t worry about it., especially after you spend hours backing up. Case in point. Fast food restaurant M says “We are open 24 hours” Fast food restaurant W says “Open late Every Night”. If its 2 AM and I want fast food, Ill go with 24 hours as I KNOW that is DEFINITELY is open. No guess work … same as no hidden lines in the TOS.

    So my suggestion is not mess with the UNLIMITED. Throttle down if you HAVE to after 100 or 150 GB. But putting TOS and EULA lines talking about how it isnt unlimited due to this and that… that is just not right. And I think will hurt business especially as this sector matures.

    Thats my thoughts….

    Mike

    Reply
  • Mike: Thank you for your comments. I agree with you. As you know, Carbonite was the first company to offer unlimited backup for a fixed price. It’s been the key to our success, so we won’t be changing it anytime soon! It’s also the key to our ease-of-use. Carbonite is still the only online backup service that doesn’t force you to learn a new user interface — just put in your email and password and we back it all up. There’s no throttling, BTW.

    David Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I tried to try Carbonite a while ago, after a colleague recommended it – as I mentioned earlier, it failed completely, both failing to install and failing to uninstall, leaving me with bits of Carbonite software scattered around my filesystem and registry to remove manually. The promised contact from customer services never happened either. Not a great start, which is why I promptly bought a three machine two year subscription to Mozy instead!

    Having just gained a new PC, I thought I’d give Carbonite a second chance. This time, it actually installed successfully, and has backed up 4 Gb or so in a little over 24 hours – a tiny fraction of the amount it should have been able to back up given the 100 Mbps upload available to the machine, but good enough. Describing this as ‘no throttling’ when there’s clearly a limitation either Carbonite’s end or in the software itself seems a little inaccurate, but the user interface is nice.

    Reply
  • James: We try to distribute our inbound bandwidth equitably across a large number of users. Unless there are an unusual number of people idle, it is unlikely that you would get anything like 100Mbps of our bandwidth, as you observed. We usually have over 100,000 PCs sending us data at any time, so we try to give everyone enough that their DSL or cable connection is the limiting factor, not Carbonite. With you monster pipe, that’s a different matter! Glad it worked for you.

    Dave Friend
    CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • David,

    Earlier you mentioned no web interface because of security issues with enctryption. However, it appears Mozy DOES have a web interface for restoring and they also have an encrytion key as well.

    Its just that it would be agreat feature if someone is away and needed a file easily.

    Mike

    Reply
  • I’ve been trying to use Mozy for over 2 weeks, and am VERY frustrated by it’s difficulty handling large files.

    Mozy advertises that interrupted backups will pick up from where they left off. UNTRUE for large files.

    Since one of the large files is my email inbox, Mozy’s advice was to not use my email program during upload :ie, for 2+days). But I can also not reboot or even move my laptop during that interim.

    It would be much better if you could pause the backup, and resume it later. Or perhaps keep uploading the encoded file, so you could keep working with the actual file, then upload changes later.

    Another frustration: customer support can take up to 20 hours to respond via email, which might work if they resolved the problem. But they haven’t yet, and each subsequent email means waiting another day to try something new.

    So 2 weeks, and countless hours of frustration, and I have nowhere near a full backup.

    Reply
  • I’ve had no problems with Carbonite. OK, no fancy “versioning”, but I haven’t needed that so far anyway. I have restored files and folders as well as my entire data collection when my previous PC’s motherboard died.

    Reply
  • RJ: The newest release of Carbonite includes:
    * Versioning
    * Private Encryption keys
    * Restore wizard
    * advanced scheduling options

    Versioning goes back 90 days, significantly more than our competitors. You will be getting an automatic upgrade over the next week or so, or you can reinstall now from our web site. You won’t see any complaints on the web about Carbonite’s restore process. It works well. Thanks for using our service.

    Dave Friend
    CEO, Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • OK David, I look forward to it.

    Reply
  • I kept running out of space on my hard drive with Mozy and couldn’t figure out what the heck was going on. At one point, my system seriously slowed down as if memory were paging like crazy. Could that be a function of running out of disk space? Today I ran across a blog that had reported the same problem.

    http://www.justinball.com/2008/02/22/mozycom-and-their-backup-software-is-shit/

    I wish I had known about this. Does anyone have any idea what is going on here?

    Herb

    Reply
  • Hello EMC! Goodbye Mozy.

    The first shoe has been dropped by “big brother” EMC. I quote:

    “storage.blogs.techtarget.com, Dave Raffo

    The Mozy online backup service has gotten considerably more expensive since EMC acquired it from Berkley Data Systems.

    In an email to customers, EMC said its MozyPro desktop service retain its price of $3.95 per license and 50 cents per GB while MozyPro server costs $6.95 per license and $1.75 per GB per month. That means a one-server license with 10 GB of storage that would cost $8.95 under the old model will be $24.95 under the new model. A 20-server license with 500 GB goes from $329 to $1,014.

    MozyPro customer Jason Powell, IT director at Granger (Indiana) Community Church, wrote about the price increase on his blog, concluding: “An approx (sic) quadrupling in price seems ridiculous to me, but what do I know?”

    Storage is storage. It doesn’t cost any more to store a GB of server data than it does to store a GB of my photos. If EMC couldn’t make money charging $.50/mo per GB, and now have to charge $1.75/month per GB, what are the green eyeshades at EMC going to do when they discover that I’m backing up 80GB of stuff for $4.95/mo, or roughly 6 cents/GB per month?

    According to ComputerWorld, “[EMC VP Roy] Sanford said the company has no plans to charge enterprise-level prices for home users or small and midsize business customers of the Mozy service.”

    Yeah, right. Anybody want to bet?

    Reply
  • Hi Herb. I’ve never had that issue with Mozy – I asked around to all my friends who I turned on to Mozy and they’ve never had that issue as well. I checked the Mozy site and found an answer to your problem. I’ve backed up about 114GB so far and more gets added every day and I’ve never had problem – Mozy continues to rock.

    Visit http://mozy.com/support/supportfaq#faq-258 to see how to resolve your issue.

    Reply
  • Thanks, Vinny. But if nobody else has ever had that issue, why does the link you sent me show it listed under “Common Issues”? And the fix, is not exactly user friendly:

    1. Go to HKEYLOCALMACHINESoftwareMozyoptions
    2. Right-click in the blank space on the right side and select “New” then “String Value.” Change the “New Value’s” name to “tempdir.”
    3. Right-click the “tempdir” key and select “Modify.” Set the value to the location you want Mozy to build its temporary files, click “OK,” and close the registry editor.
    4. Finally, open a command prompt (click your Start menu, then click “Run,” type “cmd” and click “OK.”) and type “net stop mozybackup” and hit enter. Then type “net start mozybackup” and hit enter. Then close the command prompt.

    Ok, I’ll try it, but I don’t have a clue what I’m doing. I hope it works.

    Reply
  • I didn’t see a user discussion forum for Mozy… Odd. Might help with support issues.

    Anyway, i’m only seeing 4kbyte (32kbit/second) throughput on my first backup on the Mac platform.

    tcpdump on the en0 interface shows that the server side is throttling, i.e. my computer is sending as fast as it can and is waiting for server side to read from the connection. So, I’m wondering what’s up with that and maybe others have seen the same problem?

    speakeasy’s bandwidth test shows over 400kbit/sec upload on my connection normally.

    Unlimited backups need to be taken with a grain of salt if the upload speed is limited. 🙂

    Reply
  • Vinny: Hi again, Len from Carbonite here. I’ve looked at the Mozy “Common Issues” link that you mentioned, http://mozy.com/support/supportfaq#faq-258. I’d like to point out that Carbonite does NOT have this problem because it doesn’t do a big batch encryption job like Mozy apparently does. Rather than storing all the encrypted files in your Windows temp file, Carbonite encrypts files one at a time as they are being transmitted. It keeps the encrypted image in memory so that it doesn’t impact the disk queue and slow down your PC. If the file is big, Carbonite breaks it into small chunks and encrypts each chunk with the encryption staying one chunk ahead of transmission so that the transmission is continuous. If you use the Windows PERFMON to monitor performance during the encryption, you’ll see that Carbonite generates a much smaller disk queue than Mozy does and uses less CPU as well.

    With respect to EdV’s comment about large files, I haven’t tested Mozy’s handling of large files. I can tell you for sure, however, that Carbonite DOES handle large files at the block level. If you’re in the middle of backing up a big file and you abruptly pull the plug on your computer, when you reconnect Carbonite will pick up right where it left off – it will not start backing up the whole file again. If you select Start, Shut Down, Carbonite will offer to shut down your computer automatically as soon as the backup is finished. However, there’s absolutely no reason why you can’t just ignore Carbonite and shut off your computer any old time.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • I noticed this problem also. The thing that bugs me is that the instructions oaren’t really a solution for people that only have 1 hard drive. They just let you select a different folder to get filled up, but it’s still the same drive. They’re not very easy instructions either:

    1. Go to HKEYLOCALMACHINESoftwareMozyoptions
    2. Right-click in the blank space on the right side and select “New” then “String Value.” Change the “New Value’s” name to “tempdir.”
    3. Right-click the “tempdir” key and select “Modify.” Set the value to the location you want Mozy to build its temporary files, click “OK,” and close the registry editor.
    4. Finally, open a command prompt (click your Start menu, then click “Run,” type “cmd” and click “OK.”) and type “net stop mozybackup” and hit enter. Then type “net start mozybackup” and hit enter. Then close the command prompt.

    Does anyone have a better solution than these steps?

    Thanks,

    D. Gardner

    Reply
  • Hello Carbonite. Goodbye Mozy.
    So I’ve got a very full disk on my development machine where I run Mozy and the temp file thing that everyone’s been talking about is indeed a nuisance at best. I eventually had to configure a network drive to hold the temp files. But I’ve also been running Carbonite on my laptop. Initially I wasn’t crazy about it because it didn’t let me schedule backups. It’s nice that it backs up continuously EXCEPT when it’s on my office network and I’m using my office network for something else. So I initially kept it turned off most of the time.
    But the latest release is a huge improvement. I am quite impressed. In addition to scheduling that is similar to Mozy, they also have the idea of “blackout periods”, meaning that you can back up all the time EXCEPT between the hours of x and y. This works for me. They also now have private key encryption, versioning that goes back 90 days vs. 30 for Mozy, and a number of other new features that basically bring them at least to parity with Mozy on the features front. Couple that with a much better restore process (including a handy restore wizard) and overall nice integration with Windows and no temp file problem, and I’m sold. Their customer support seems to have gotten a lot better too. They finally have a free phone number on their web site.
    Miriam

    Reply
  • Dave Friend,

    This article below is for you and your exectuives…because you have no “real” customer service. You have a very effective customer irritation and purge system. There are no excuses, so don’t respond. Phone calls, 72 hour email responses have resulted in recorded excuses regarding the wonderful popularity of Carbonite, so no one can help us and emails pledging a response in 72 hours without a response in 72 hours. You have our subscription money on two computers, so you can go back to promoting now on Rush Limbaugh to find more suckers ……Thanks for wasting our valuable time and the time of others.

    Whatever happened to customer service?
    http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/services/2003-09-25-services-frontcover_x.htm

    Maybe this will assist the Google bots to get Vinny’s blog to the top of searches..

    [… deleted by Vinny]

    Reply
  • Paul,

    I’d like to get to the bottom of the experience you’ve mentioned above. Our volumes are high right now, but there’s no reason you should not have gotten a response at all. I know you asked us not to respond here, and I’ll meet you half-way. I’ll address your Carbonite problem, rather than comments about customer service in general.

    Please send an e-mail to [email protected] with “ATTN: Len” in the subject line so that I can follow up with you directly.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Yay!

    I was on hold with Carbonite for 20 minues trying to find someone to help me INSTALL it. Imagine if I needed help with recovery *sheesh*

    While on hold I saw your post and I’m mozy-ing on over there to sign up.

    xoxo
    Sue

    Reply
  • ZZZZZZZZZZzzzzzzzzzz

    I just want to let you know that I spent over ONE hour on hold waiting for a live Carbonite support person when there was a server issue a couple of weeks ago. More on this can be read at

    http://www.pcadvisor.co.uk/forums/index.cfm?action=showthread&threadID=319018&ForumID=2&sr=1

    Personally, I like Carbonite and its ease of use. Today, I had to restore a file (using versions) and the restore to a prior version worked 100%. I had the occasion to later reboot my PC and then I got a Carbonite configuration error upon startup. I followed the instructions on how to do the reinstall. After doing so, I got a message about the registration failing. I tried to reinstall again – but I am still getting the “registration failed” message. Presently, I have no functioning Carbonite.

    I am revisisting this blog and I agree with Paul Christy’s post. I am unable to reach a live person at Carbonite, and this time around, I hung up after waiting about 15 minutes. I even tried to sign up for the priority support service (although I have an issue about paying for support when problems are caused by the vendor and not the customer) and guess what?? Oh, you know already! Very frustrating to be continually on hold.

    I emailed customer support; and I forwarded a copy of that email to Dave Friend. So far, email support has been good and I trust I will be given instructions as to how to remedy the registration problem.

    Stay tuned!

    With kind regards,

    Kathie

    Reply
  • Hi, Dave Friend here. Carbonite’s CEO. I want to apologize for the long hold times if you have been calling Carbonite customer support. During the month of Feb we added almost twice the number of new customers that we had projected. Since about 70% of all the customer calls we get take place in the first month of service, we have been struggling to keep up. We even took people from marketing and assigned them to customer support for the last couple of weeks to help with the load. We have a pretty sophisticated call center system, so I can see what the queues are in real time and I check them every day. I know that wait times for the last two weeks have averaged over 20 minutes.

    When we saw signups ramping up last month, we immediately accelerated our customer support hiring. But it takes a month or so for a new rep to get trained and productive, so we are just now starting to see the improvements and in fact this week hold times are down significantly.

    And lest you judge Carbonite too harshly, please note that Mozy Home does not offer ANY free telephone support — just email.

    David Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Kathy, Sue, and Paul,

    I’m sorry all of you have had trouble getting through to customer support. As David mentioned in his post above, Carbonite’s customer base has been growing rapidly, and while we’ve also been growing the customer support team to keep up with that demand, it does take time to get folks trained and ready to give the top-notch support needed when handling something as serious as your backup needs. As Kathy mentioned, we also had a number of folks who had difficulty reconnecting to our servers after we upgraded them last weekend, so the phones have been more busy than usual due to those calls as well.

    I don’t want any of you to be left hanging, though, and I’ll be happy to arrange for a senior support engineer to call you if you could e-mail me your contact information and the best time to call. Please e-mail [email protected] with “ATTN: Len” in the subject line and mention this blog (so I know it’s you) and I’ll have someone give you a call at the time that is best for you.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Carbonite back up and running!!!

    I received an email last night (3/19) and I would like to share it with the group (see below).
    All I had to do was simply retry what I did yesterday morning and Carbonite is now back up and running. Fire is out!

    I truly believe that David Friend, Len Pallazola, and all of the staff at Carbonite want to do right by the customer (as evidenced by their participation in this blog and by replies to email). Hopefully the issues of the long hold times for telephone support will be resolved soon. Easily attainable free live support will make a great product even better!

    Until the next time….

    With kind regards,

    Kathie

    From: Rosanne
    Sent: Wed, 19 Mar 2008 5:42 pm
    Subject: Re: Fwd: Very happy with your product (when working) BUT Very unhappy with phone support

    David Friend, our CEO, has asked me to assist you.
    Thank you for the note and I apologize that you were unable to get through. We are currently in the process of hiring more staff to keep up with the demands of our growing business.Last week we performed a system upgrade that, due to a problem in the software, may have caused your Carbonite backup to stop working. All your files are safe, however.

    To resolve this issue, we sent out instructions for restarting Carbonite. We have discovered that this process did not work for everyone that was affected. We hate to ask you to do this again, but please take a minute to restart Carbonite to ensure that your backup is running normally.

    We recommend that you do this even if your backup appears to be working. However, if you are currently restoring files from Carbonite, your system is working properly and you don’t need to follow these instructions.

    Please go to http://www.carbonite.com/fix and click on the Restart Carbonite button. In a few moments, your Carbonite backup will be running again.

    Please let me know how you make out.

    Thank you for using Carbonite!

    Sincerely,

    Rosanne
    Carbonite Customer Support

    Reply
  • Rosanne, Len, and David,

    I read every post on this blog and commend you all for handling things the way you do. I am a 67 year old non technical person who decided he wanted to try Carbonite anyway and I finally took the plunge on March 15. I am currently using a trial of Carbonite and it backed up 18.5 GB between then and sometimes between 0700-1100. days with no noticible problems. However I have a couple of questions:

    1. What is the number for phone support, free or otherwise? I sure can’t find it on the Carbonite Site.

    2. How does one schedule Carbonite to work only at night rather than during the day? Again I can’t find that information on the site or in the application.

    3. There was some mention of a priority service number for a fee. What is that number?

    4. Can I restore a particular folder to a drive other than the one I packed it up from? i.e. File ABC was backed up from Drive C but I want to restore it on Drive G.

    One other question, “Why don’t you have a support forum on your site?” Just curious, as I subscribe to Wordon for my stocks and it has a great forum.

    Thanking you in advance for any assistance in addressing my concerns.

    Reply
  • Hi Gary,

    Here are some answers to your questions:

    1. Our phone numbers can be found on the Help page of the website. For your convenience, they are 617-587-1100 or toll-free at 877-665-4466.

    2. If you double-click the Carbonite lock icon (in your system tray area, by the clock on your PC), you’ll open the Carbonite InfoCenter. Click the Set Options button and then switch to the Backup Schedule tab. The basic scheduling functionality is pretty self-explanatory. I’m sorry this wasn’t easy to find on the help page on the website, but if you type “schedule” into the search field there, it should come right up.

    3. To sign up for our Priority Support Service, you should first dial in through the regular number and press 2 for support. During the greeting prompt, you can press * to switch right over to sign up for Priority Support, or you can do so when your call is answered. (Pressing * is obviously quicker.) Once you’ve signed up, we’ll e-mail you the special priority support phone numbers and e-mail address. For a limited time, we’re offering a year of priority support (which includes shorter hold times and is handled by our senior support engineers) for $19.95. That’s about a third of the cost of just one phone call to Microsoft’s customer support line, for a whole year.

    4. You can certainly restore to a different drive than the one from which you backed up. Within your Carbonite Backup Drive, browse to the item(s) you wish to restore and right-click them, and then just select “Restore To” instead of “Restore”. Carbonite will prompt you to provide the destination using a standard Windows browse box – just point it to where you want the files to go.

    Regarding a support forum, that’s something we’ve been talking about lately actually. There are still some decisions to be made on the best way to implement it, but you should see at the very least a Carbonite blog on our website soon, and then we’ll go from there.

    Please let me know if you have additional questions!

    Regards,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • I was amused by Mr. Friend’s response to Sue who was complaining that she was on hold for 20 minutes with Carbonite’s phone support. So she switched to Mozy that has NO phone support. Smart move, Sue! Now you don’t have to worry about holding for 20 minutes.
    Mr. Friend obviously pays a lot of attention to what people are posting on blogs. Where is Josh Coates, Mozy’s CEO?
    Miriam

    Reply
  • As described above I took the plunge with CarboniteI finally on March 15 using their free trial. It backed up 18.5 GB between then and sometimes between 0700-1100 on March 20 ( I was out of the office the morning of the 20th so I don’t know exactly when it finsihed). In the hopes that some additional details on my Carbonite experience might help others I will expand a tad.

    I write for a local weekly paper and publish an “eaper” on Branson, MO so I was primarily concerned about my document files. So when I started the back up process using Carbonite, I took advantave of the feature that lets you select just the files you want to back up. Although I didn’t keep a log, those critical files were backed up very quickly, within basically hours.

    After all my non picture files were backed up I simply selected the My Picture directory and let Carbonite back up the pictures in the back ground. I have an extensive picure library going back three years and for the last year I have been using the RAW format. The vast majority of the backup time involved the pictures as it seems that every time I checked the status of the backup it was working on a picuture.

    I backup went smoothly and, with my technical capabilitites that is a good thing. As an example, when I went to test the restore feature and got to the part where it let’s you select files to restore I got a message that said something about my intranet setting were turned off by default . I thought it was a problem because I hadn’t seen that message before and called Tech Support at Carbonite. Somewhere between 15 and 25 minutes later I got a representive on the phone. The wait was no big deal because I had the phone on speaker and was working on an article for deadline.

    The important thing is that, number one I did get to talk with a live person. Even more importantly that person solved the problem for me. What was a big problem to me wasn’t to them. The person simply advised me to click on the c: drive, which displayed the My Documents folder that had all of the documents in it that I had backed up. When I clicked on that there was a listing of all the folders and stuff that I had backed up and could restore. All I had to do in the first place was ignore the message and follow the directions that Carbonite had given. I had created my own problem but Carbonite helped me solve it!

    Because I had never restored anything in my life, I tentatively selected the first three folders to restore to my e drive. a $99.00 external drive I brought for back up purposes but never used. I worked flawlessly. Encouraged, I restored all my files except my pictures. I started before I went to the movie at 5:00 pm yesterday and sometimes between then and when I returned at 9:00 the restoration was complete.

    Bottom Line: In less than a weeks time, with very little effort on my part and, at this point no cost, I now have my data backed up in a secure off line facility and have developed a system that will enable me to conveniently keep a ready to go back up on my external hard drive. I know, some will say well all you had to do was copy those files over. That’s true but the fact is that I hadn’t and even if I did, I still had no off site packup. The point is that for the first time in my computer history, which goes back to about 1981, I feel very comforatable that I have control over a backup process that it is worth the effort and works for me

    Some might ask the question, “Are you going to subscribe to Carbonite?” The reply would be, “Absolutely.”

    Reply
  • Just as follow through. I did subscribe for two years this week. It appears that things are being backed up as I change files etc. So far so good. It is my intention to post periodically, at least once a month if things are going smoothly more often if problems are encountered and have to be work through.

    Just for the record I am not an employee etc. of Carbonite. I confess that I heard about them on the Rush Limbaugh radio show and decided to try them. Obviousl I am glad that I did.

    Reply
  • Holy cow! Did anyone see the big (and quite lauditory) review of Carbonite in today’s USA Today? There’s a video too. Jeez. Backup is really going mainsteam.

    http://www.usatoday.com/tech/products/services/2008-04-01-carbonite_N.htm

    Miriam

    Reply
  • Okay, we have 3.590 and there still is no support for external drives. David (of Carbonite) – any explanation for us? Any timeline? We’re about to shut down Carbonite for good and head to Mozy if we can’t get the external drive in the backup stream.

    Reply
  • Wow. There sure are a lot of interesting points made here. I’m new to the online backup world and reading things like this is a great way for me to hear what people really think about the product—as opposed to what the companies want you to hear. Obviously, it looks like the folks at Carbonite care about what their users think and I commend them for taking the time to try to fix the problems. Like all companies they have their problems, but at least they admit it and even the CEO is willing to jump in and help where he can. I must say, that impresses me a lot.

    I know this whole thing started out as a pro-Mozy blog, but from what I’m reading here and on other sites, it seems like recently people are having a lot of problems with Mozy’s upload speed. See http://chiphunnicutt.com/four-days-with-mozy/ and http://nosugrefneb.com/weblog/378 for just two examples I read this weekend. So they certainly have their problems too and I don’t see them responding or seeming to care about their users. I’m still not sure what option I’ll go with, but it looks to me like Carbonite might be the better option –less problems during uploads and a company who cares enough to provide free phone support.

    Sallie

    Reply
  • David Friend wrote: “Yes, now with release 3.5 it’s easy to back up all your videos. ”
    I guess he was wrong. With v3.5 you still have to manually select every single folder for which you want to backup video files. This is the only thing keeping me from switching to Carbonite.

    Reply
  • I am trying Carbonite but having some problems. No response from customer support yet, but hopeful… I was reading the “throttling” portions with bemusement; I experienced problems after uploading several GB (during the trial). However, I think the throttling was imposed by my cable internet provider. I ended up rebooting the cable modem (once or twice for each throttle event) – restoring full backup speed. I wonder if the throttling that others are describing could be imposed by their ISP as well.

    Reply
  • I doubt that Carbonite is slowing anything down. Our bandwidth is generally a lot higher than the typical cable connection.
    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Does anyone know what the Carbonite plans are related to external fixed drives …. I mean drives permanently installed but external? These drives are very popular. Do any of you have a work-around?

    Reply
  • I have mixed thoughts on Carbonite.

    I have had Carbonite installed on an XP PC for 18 months or so and had no problem installing or using…until recently [early March?] when there was a problem about the service being down…
    except it wasn’t immediately apparent [after all Carbonite goes on about how it saves without you noticing] and then it was definitely a problem for in excess of 24 hours…
    nor did I recive an e-mail about the problem or how to overcome…
    I eventually found a forum [PCAdvisor] which explained the problem and how to sort it…
    except it then took me hours even to get onto the site. I then had to reinstall again a week later…
    e-mails to customer service were slowly responded to and no real explanation or apology.
    On balance my experience for backing up files on an XP PC were pretty good and remain so.

    HOWEVER…
    I have now networked a VISTA PC and wanted to use Carbonite.
    Boy, just forget it.
    I paid my $50. That was taken quickly and easily. Now there is a surprise.
    Installation is supposed to be easy – that’s what the Home Page tells you – but it isn’t.
    The endless e-mails to and from Customer Service – their replies requiring me to uninstall and reboot and disable Windows Defender or Norton Firewall or Spybot etc etc etc.
    Even when I finally got onto the website or to the Manage screen [in itself took hours as the server seems to go on and off like a yo-yo] reinstalling was fine to a point but mostly blew out at some point or another.
    Only once in the last four days have I completed installation.
    Then when 73% through initial back up it stopped and that was that.
    I am at this moment trying to get back on to the Manage site to reinstall having uninstalled etc etc
    Its like a soap on TV except more annoying and ridiculous.
    Have starting ccing the VP of Customer Care – remains to see if he cares.
    Is it a problem with Carbonite conflicting with Vista?

    Reply
  • Andrew,

    There isn’t any particular known Vista compatibility issue that fits the behavior you’ve been describing. I’m sorry that thus far you’ve had some trouble getting a solid resolution from customer support – I’d like to have one of the senior support engineers or a team lead give you a call to resolve this issue. Would you mind e-mailing me your contact information and a good time to try to reach you by phone? You can e-mail me the contact info at [email protected] – put ATTN: LEN in the subject line and mention this blog within the body of the e-mail, and I’ll have someone get in touch with you as soon as possible.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Len
    Hi – and thanks for the reply. I should probably just say I feel a little guilty about my intemperate post. I was so frustrated and am so disappointed given my previously good – on the whole – experience with Carbonite.
    The non-appearance of the customer support e-mail from March alerting users to the problem with [allegedly] a particular version of the program or so was annoying, but relatively quickly resolved once I found a forum dealing with the issue, although the problem accessing both the Main Site and the Manage page was irksome.
    The real issue I have had with the “installation” onto my recently networked Vista PC was three-fold, and was compounded by the time it took to get customer support responses.
    In normal cirumstances delay in response to my e-mails of anywhere between an hour and 12 hours was probably pretty good. The problem arose when I was getting frustrated and annoyed.
    Anyway, the real issues for me have been:
    1. The extraordinary and time-consuming difficulties getting, at various different times,
    a. onto the site at all, or
    b. once on getting to the Manage page, or
    c. once there getting the program after clicking on Click Here, or
    d. once getting it to run actually getting it to register and start the Initial Back up.
    I kid you not when I say that I spent quite a few hours and dozens and dozens of clicks over three days and at all times of day and night trying to achieve an installation and finally a back-up.
    This is NOT the mark of an easy to use program as so assiduosuly advertised on the Home Page and in other publications.
    Why is it so difficult to get access to the website or to complete even the basic application installation?
    2. The conflicting explanations from Customer Support as to what might be the problem even after I had sent a Systems Information [.nfo] file.
    I was variously told to Uninstall the program in different ways, Disable or Uninstall various other programs or apps or firewalls and always to reinstall. The latter was problematic as I said at 1. above.
    3. The need to Uninstall or Disable other programs when it is promoted as an easy to install and operate program.

    As I said above my early experiences were good. I am a technophobe and uninterested in the technical stuff but need to Store some files and for it to be done remotely and without my input, so all this parlaver over the last few days is, ultimately, disappointing.

    In the end I got our freelance Techie to come over and do the Uninstalling and Disabling and wasting time clicking operations yesterday evening [UK time] and with a bit of violence he finally persuaded the program to install, run and complete a back-up.

    Not such good value in the end!

    So thanks for the offer of an engineers assistance but it is no longer necessary.

    Lets hope that the day-to-day back-up remains as diligent and easy to forget as has been the case this last 18 months.

    Maybe the Vista thing is an unfortunate timing thing, but if that be the case then I find it regrettable that there is so much difficulty accessing the site.

    Andrew

    Reply
  • Hi everyone,
    Do you know if either Carbonite or Mozy allows to backup your computer and external hard drives on a single lincense ?
    Thanks for your answers !

    Reply
  • I recently discovered that Carbonite started quietly stoped backing up files of certain types and sizes, and in certain directories -WITHOUT TELLING ME!

    Thank God, I happened to notice that
    a) none of my home video files were being backed up
    b) installable programs that I had purchased on CD and backed up were missing files necessary for them to be re-installable, and
    c) A number of my actual documents were missing, seemingly at random.

    An email to Carbonite generated the following response (3 days later):
    – Videos are no longer backed up by default. I need to manually select each video file and tell Carbonite to back it up (!!!!)
    – Carbonite was “never designed to backup program files”, so it ignores .exe’s and dozens of other file types. When I asked them how I was supposed to restore the software I’ve purchased on CD, they said I should just reinstall them from the original CDs. Would those be the original CDs that were destroyed in the fire/flood/theft that I bought a backup service in the first place to protect myself against?
    – Carbonite ignores files with “special characters” in their file name, like underscores. Like the “special characters” that are in about a third of my critical documents’ file names?

    By not telling me that it ignored a bunch of my files, seemingly at random, and telling me that my “backup was complete”, it created a dangerous false sense of security. Not to mention that it’s a fundamental breach of their “unlimited backups made simple” advertising. Very limited backups, made very complicated.

    I’m bailing to another service (maybe Mozy) not so much because I’m upset at them for playing this shell game with my data after paying $80, but because I don’t want to lose my data when the class action suits/user backlash brings them down.

    Reply
  • Hi Nick,

    I’m sorry if this information seemed to be a surprise to you. Regarding program and system files, Carbonite has always been this way and that information is included in the installation windows, as well as on our website. We’re working on ways to make sure folks know about this, but as I’m sure you know, folks tend to click that Next button again and again during an install without stopping to read the notes there. In fact, we used to title one of the installation windows as Important Information You Must Read About Your First Backup to include this info, and that didn’t seem to help.

    You don’t need to manually select each video file; just the folder(s) that contain video files. When you select “Back up video files in this folder”, all video files within that folder will be backed up automatically, including ones you add later. This change was made because folks were finding their backup becoming bloated with sample video files included in software installations, large (feature-length) movies they downloaded but did not want to back up, etc. resulting in a slower backup and restore process. This change allows greater user control over a file type that can have a pretty big impact on both your bandwidth and your backup size.

    Regarding your software application disks, you have a few options there. You could store your software at another location, such as at work (for your home computer) or at home (for your work computer). You could manually override Carbonite’s default exclusions by right-clicking an excluded type of file and selecting “Back up files of this type in folders selected for backup”. Or you could zip up a copy of your program and back up the zip file.

    We find that when our customers have a need to restore, they want to get their important data and documents back as quickly as possible so they can be back up and running. A program like Microsoft Office takes about five minutes to install from a CD or a few hours to restore the same amount of data across the Internet.

    I’m not sure what Mozy’s default backup selections are, but I encourage you to read up on it first. I’d be pretty surprised to find out that they’ll back up installed programs (and even more surprised to find out that the programs worked when restored onto a different type of computer later).

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I too find it annoying to have to select every single folder with video files for backup, as I have lots of them (filmed with my digital camera). Why not have an option for us power-users who actually know that we want to backup all video files in all folders selected for backup? I don’t accidentally put the latest feature-length movie in my Documents or Photos folder. Or at least make an option to “Backup video-files in this folder AND its subfolders (including new folders created later)”.
    While I can live with this annoyance, the refusal to backup files with certain special characters is almost unacceptable. Files with names beginning with ~ or ending in _ just wont get backed up, no matter what you do. The support tells me to rename the files, but I should not have to do that, and sometimes it just isn’t possible.

    But still, Carbonite is better than Mozy. While Mozy doesn’t have the above mentioned limitations, it has a whole bunch of other problems which eventually made me switch (back) to Carbonite after a year.

    Reply
  • I’m in the process of trying to figure which option to take when it comes to backing up data. It’s a monkey on my back. My 6 month old (yes, 6 months old) Maxtor external hard drive crashed. Now you know why I think external hard drives are dicey.

    A lot of people hype Carbonite and Mozy. But Carbonite doesn’t have a customer service team you contact by phone. That never set well with me. And they expect me to hand my precious data over to them? That’s nuts, what if something goes wrong? Trust me, something always goes wrong, nothing is infallible. As we all know, many companies don’t answer emails and that’s just a fact of life.

    Besides, an email is not the best way to address a complicated issue. Sheesh, what if you have a question about the answer to your original question? Send another email to ’em and pray they answer back?

    A few months back I tested Mozy. I called them. I was forced, literally forced to leave a message. And they never called back. For that reason I won’t deal with Mozy or Carbonite. Around that time I did contact an online storage company that did, at the time, have direct contact via phone. They were courteous, professional and answered all 100 of my questions. I misplaced there name. They’re in the Silicon Valley area, I believe. I’ll hunt around for their name. But you know what? If I remember right, they’re much smaller than Mozy and Carbonite yet they had people answering the phones!

    Hey Google: Hurry up! Hurry up with your free online storage system. Please! Now if someone would only come out with a tutorial on how to build a RAID 1 in a simple, kindergarden, down to earth style of discourse that a dummy could understand. 🙂

    Reply
  • Westerner,

    I think you have Mozy & Carbonite mixed up, as far as support goes. Carbonite does offer free phone support. Mozy only offers phone support to their MozyPro subscribers, not their free or MozyHome subscribers. (As a point of reference, MozyHome is their option that is comparable in price to Carbonite.) I’m thinking that’s the reason they never called you back.

    If you’re basing your feelings about Carbonite on the availability of phone support as you described above, please give us a try (and a call, if you have any questions). Hope to hear from you as a customer!

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • And here we go again – the same problems [for unspecified reasons] as I had at end April. I get a message on screen saying nothing has been backed-up for 3 days.
    Strangely no problem [as usual] on my XP-configured machine. The problem again arises only on the Vista-configured and networked machine.
    So disable McAfee firewall and try to reinstall…not workee again and again. The whole process just stops when trying to download activation data or some such. Refers you back to Manage page but that doesn’t help and still nothing saying could be fireall etc conflict. Thankfully I know about it.
    Remains how long it takes me to force Carbonite to work, but again why no earlier indication of a problem with back up and why no explanation as to why it suddenly stops doing it. Damned annoying.
    I am definitely moving when my subscript ion is up.

    Once again, in irritation at all the wasted time and effort. I have a million better things to do.

    Reply
  • Len,
    Comparing Mozy to Carbonite is definitely not a right thing to do when it comes to phone support. I understand that Carbonite offers free phone support for all users (according to your previous post) but again, to me and for other average users, it’s about the service you get. I don’t mind e-mail support as long as that support works.

    Method of communication is always important but it also should come up with the satisfaction level. If I am satisfied with email support then I will be the last person to contact anyone via phone and waste my time. So far from readers and my friends experience, I have noticed that the customer support response is just not that fast. For an average user, data is as important as for the small business or anyone else.

    A perfect example of rip-off that I’ve came across is your Priority Support plan. You guys asks users to get Priority support for a fix amount so that callers don’t have to wait in line and get the support quickly. My friend told me that even with Priority Support, he had to wait for at least an hour.

    Any thoughts or defense on this? Now, I don’t want to hear that sometimes we are busy and it gets delayed or something…..My friend paid for the Priority Support just to avoid delays 🙂

    Will

    Reply
  • Andrew, I was able to look you up by your name in our system. I do see that you were having some trouble connecting to our servers between 7/1 and 7/4, but that since then your backup has been connecting normally and has been up-to-date. Carbonite needs a secure, reliable connection on port 443 both for installs and the backup operation – it sounds like during that time you may not have been able to maintain that connection. If this happens again, you may wish to check your router and/or broadband modem for problems.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Will,

    I’m very surprised to hear that your friend waited that long in the Priority phone queue. That is certainly not the norm. Right now it’s 4:23pm Eastern time, and the only call on hold in that queue is at twelve minutes. The afternoon is our busiest time of the day. It’s possible that from time to time we get a surge of Priority callers all dialing in at once. As a general rule, though, the hold times aren’t very long, and there’s a senior support engineer on the other end.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Len
    Thanks for your reply.
    I go back to something I said a while ago, which is that the whole process is supposed to be effortless. It isn’t.
    And it always seems that software suppliers blame something uncheckable [at least by someone like me with no knowledge].
    I had no warning there was aproblem until three days had gone by and no explanation. Not that I understand what you are talking about now anyway.
    When a problem arises, I rely on instructions to achieve and yet the Carbonite explanations rarely work without considerable and long-winded effort. This time it took me a total of three hours over 2 days to get the app back and working and updating files.
    Andrew

    Reply
  • Thanks Len for your answer. I knew that this would be one of the answer. Thanks for trying though.

    Reply
  • I have had the same problem with Carbonite that you describe. It’s fine for tiny backups, but when my computer crashed and I had to do a restore, it took about ten days to retrieve my data. I don’t know why they throttle down the data download rate but this is crazy. I am cancelling my subscription and will check out Mozy.

    Reply
  • That’s great that ppl are getting responses from the CEO of carbonite. I can’t even remove the software!

    I just emailed David, let’s see if he can respond. If anyone knows how to manually remove Carbonite so I don’t have to wipe my PC to get rid of it

    Please…..PLEASE enlighten me!

    Thanks.

    Reply
  • @FV – Carbonite doesn’t throttle restores at all. Your restore speed is limited only by the speed and quality of your Internet connection. If your restore is taking a long time, one of our support staff can review your log files to determine what might be slowing it down.

    @Randy, not sure if you got a reply yet from your e-mail. If you’re having trouble uninstalling using the Windows Add/Remove Programs control panel, the easiest way to fix that is to reinstall first (even just a new free trial) and then use the Add/Remove Programs control panel. If you e-mail [email protected], we can certainly provide manual uninstall instructions as well.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • No, add/remove programs did not work; anyone would have known that I have that knowledge if you’d visited the website from which my email came. We are IT CONSULTANTS – We definitely know how to uninstall software using the Add/remove control panel!

    It however errored out, and removed itself from the add/remove control panel’s list of installed programs. I did however receive the following response from Rosanne, I guess David’s Assistant…

    Hello Randy and thank you for your e-mail.

    David Friend, our CEO, has asked me to assist you.

    I’m sorry that you are having difficulty removing Carbonite from your computer.
    If an incomplete installation is preventing both a reinstall and an uninstall, we suggest that you follow the steps below to manually remove the Carbonite program files.
    1. Reboot your computer.
    2. Open My Computer and browse to C:Program FilesCarboniteCarbonite Backup.
    3. Right-click on CarboniteService.exe and rename it to CarboniteService.old.
    4. Right-click on CarboniteUI.exe and rename it to CarboniteUI.old.
    5. Right-click on CarboniteNSE.dll and rename it to CarboniteNSE.old.
    6. Reboot your computer again.
    7. Open My Computer and browse to C:Program FilesCarboniteCarbonite Backup.
    8. Delete CarboniteService.old, CarboniteUI.old, and CarboniteNSE.old.
    9. Reboot your computer one more time.
    The three reboots, while tedious, are very important in order to unload and remove the program successfully.

    Thank you for using Carbonite!

    Sincerely,

    Rosanne
    Carbonite Customer Support
    http://www.carbonite.com
    Backup. Simple.

    Reply
  • @Len: it certainly doesn’t manage to max out either network or disk for my Carbonite-using colleague in the UK, taking him over a day to restore files last time. Not slow enough to be impractical, but not ideal; is your restore process latency bound on small files?

    What is much more irritating, though, is the conflict with MSI installations (at least on Vista x64). Any sign of a fix for that yet?

    Reply
  • @Randy, glad to see you already received a detailed response. I’m sorry that you misunderstood my instructions – I was not directing you to use Add/Remove Programs; I was providing instructions on what to do when that doesn’t work.

    As you know, when a program’s uninstall data is invalid (such as by program files or registry entries being removed manually), the easiest and least invasive way to repair the uninstall data is to reinstall the program first. After that, the Add/Remove Programs control panel should work normally. This applies to pretty much any Windows software.

    I apologize if my answer offended you. I chose to provide the simple solution, and also offered to provide the manual instructions by e-mail. (For the record, you did not include a web address in your post, and e-mail addresses are not displayed here.)

    _________________________
    @James, send a note to [email protected] with ATTN: Len in the subject line, and mention the config.msi issue. We have a utility we can e-mail you that may allow us to force an exclude of that folder so you don’t run into that conflict any more.

    It is possible that latency on small files is affecting the speed of restore for your overseas colleague, although I can’t say that with authority – I’d have to check with our engineering team to be sure.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Yikes, I apologize for all that bold – forgot to close a tag.

    Reply
  • I haven’t had a chance to check this blog in a few weeks, and Len’s been checking on my behalf, but I’d like to respond to a few of the above posts.

    For Will Ford, if your friend really waited an hour (or even 15 minutes) for priority service, I agree that’s unacceptable and if he emails me, I’ll refund his $20. Our Talisma customer support system keeps very accurate logs of hold times in all queues and the priority queue is generally only a few minutes.

    I wish I had a solution for the long waits on our regular customer support queue. Unfortunately, everyone seems to call us during a few busy hours each day. I have the same problem with Dell and Microsoft (in both cases, I have to pay for phone support). Maybe Mozy has the right idea — no phone support unless you buy the Pro version.

    To Randy, I try to answer as many emails as I can personally, but when I’m traveling heavily, Len checks them for me every day and forwards me anything that he can’t handle. I do learn a great deal by reading the blogs, and it helps improve our product and service.

    For FJ: Regarding download bandwidth, as Len said, we do NOT throttle download bandwidth in any way. I did a restore this eventing and got restore rate of 2.9 mpbs, which is about the speed of my DSL. I restored 2.5GB in just under 1 hour 55 minutes. A standard residential Verizon DSL service only gives you 768kbps, which is 345 MB per hour. Any backup service you get is going to be limited by this kind of Internet connection. Carbonite has 10gbps pipes in our data center, so we’re certainly not slowing anything down.

    Regards,

    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I started with Carbonite but just could not get it to work with my AV solution; Kaspersky Internet Security 7.x

    So, I switched to Mozy Home and everything was great until just over a week ago, when I started getting comms errors.
    Let’s jump to today; I deleted my PC account at mozy home, deinstalled and reinstalled the client, and I am finally up and running.
    Over the next two days I will rebuild my backup sets because Mozy don’t offer any config/backup-set export…

    OK, you may ask, why are you pee’d off? I reported the issue on 21st July, after spotting the issue myself.
    Well, despite reminder emails, Mozy have not responded.
    And that is quite apart from the fact that I discovered the fault myself! A more naive user would think that no news = good news. For Mozy, that does not appear to be the case.

    Ease of use; 7/10
    Reliabity; 1/10
    Security; 0/10
    Overall; 3/10

    Reply
  • Scott: Hi, I’m the CEO of Carbonite. Kaspersky is supposed to keep Carbonite on their white list, but every time they do an upgrade, it takes them a while to get Carbonite cleared again and it makes installations a pain. We’ve bugged them about this for several years and they just can’t seem to get it straight. However, our customer support folks have an easy way to get around the problem. Send me an email at [email protected] with your phone number and I’ll have someone at Carbonite walk you through it and restart your free Carbonite trial.

    Reply
  • “Bob: Seems to me when I was trying Mozy I was getting better bandwidth than that — I seem to recall about 300kbps. But that was almost a year ago. Maybe they have changed their policy.”

    Oh, they sure have. They are *absolutely* throttling you on the server side. Their technical support and several other users (one of them being a tier 3 engineer for Level 3 Communications) more than confirmed it for me.

    However, they fail to mention this to you.

    i wish Carbonite had a Mac client. C’mon, David, hook us up! 🙂

    Reply
  • Bob: i hope you’re on the list for the Mac Beta. If not, send an email to [email protected]. I’m sorry that the Mac has been so long in gestation — our Mac community didn’t like the UI on our first iteration so we started over and the new version (which looks great) is now in Alpha.
    As for throttling, we test Mozy and all our competitors regularly and see a variety of throughput. 300kbps is about average. Carbonite has the ability to throttle but has chosen not to use it. What you might be seeing with Mozy is not throttling but just aggregate bandwidth limitations in their data center. They are not located in a major metropolitan hub, as far as I know.
    David Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Hi Guys,
    I just want to tell you my experience with Mozy. My drive died and I started a restore with Mozy on 6/30/2008. On 7/18/2008 I called & asked to speak to a manager. I got transferred to David Dryer & he said that they had hardware problems, that they were sorry & they would credit me the $180.00 restore fee. I finally got the external drive which was supposed to be my restore on the 23rd of July. I plugged in the drive and windows said the drive needs to be initialized. I immediately called and asked them about the formatting, and spoke to manager James Davis, who agreed the restore was corrupt. Mr. Davis said he would take care of it ASAP. I called back today and spoke to a third manager, named Sheena. All in all it doesn’t look good. I hope I get my data back but certainly a month and a half isn’t acceptable.

    Still Waiting,
    James

    Reply
  • What’s the $180 restore fee for? I haven’t had to restore anything yet and I wasn’t aware of any restore fee. Can you please explain what you’re talking about?

    Reply
  • Miriam,
    I didn’t read the fine print, so I didn’t know either. To be fair, when doing a large restore Mozy recommends a DVD restore, or if its really large they send you a cheap external disk. I don’t think they charge for the disk but they do charge several fees one of which is $.25/GB, and a third for shipping. It wasn’t cheap but there is a fair amount of labour involved in that restore.

    Overall I had 55,000 files on Mozy, and not getting my restore in 7 business days, has caused me tons of anxiety. On their site, it says usually 2 to 3 business days to get a restore out the door. Now that its been a month and half, I feel sick.

    When I called about my restoration in mid July they said their DVD Burner was down, which made me really angry, because when I ordered the restore I ordered it to an external hard disk, so there was no need to have it burned to DVD. Plus a company that offers that kind of service for $4.95 a month should have more then one DVD burner to do restores, don’t you think?

    Hope this helps,
    James

    Reply
  • Thanks, James. I had no idea about this. I thought you just started the restore, went to bed, and when you got up in the morning everything would just be there. My DSL is capable of almost 6mbps download, so if I do my math right, I should be able to restore 2.7GB per hour. My back up is about 24GB (roughly 70,000 files) , so that should only take maybe 10 hours. Why didn’t you just do your restore by downloading over the Internet? What’s with the external hard drive? Why would you need that?
    Miriam

    Reply
  • From the Mozy restore site:”DVD Restore (Recommended for large restores)

    When restoring large amounts of data, avoid long download times and slow connection speeds by ordering a DVD restore. Mozy recovers your data and burns it to DVDs usually within 2-3 business days. Your DVDs are then shipped via FedEx Next Day delivery.

    When ordering a DVD restore, you will be charged a $29.95 and $0.50 per GB processing fee, as well as the FedEx Next Day shipping rate.”

    So first I should say the charge is $.50/GB not $.25/GB.

    The second thing, is just because you have the bandwidth to do 6MB download doesn’t mean you are going to get it. If you do that is great, but the way I saw it was, this data is very important to me so I wanted to do the restore as they had recommended. I think that’s fair right?

    James

    Reply
  • Wow, I thought the whole point of online backup was that it was actually all online, not online backup but offline restore. I don’t blame you for following the Mozy instructions — I guess that’s the safe thing to do. But this is an eye-opener for me. I don’t understand why you can’t just download it in less time. I do get pretty close to 6mbps download from iTunes and other sites, so i should be able to restore a 24GB backup in a lot less than 2-3 days, and without the considerable extra expense. I’m glad I found this out now. Thanks, James.

    Reply
  • An apology from Mozy:

    In the meantime, there are several things I have done for you this evening.

    * Re-submitted a restore for you. This should be out to you by Friday or Saturday.

    * Ensured you have been refunded all charges for your original restore.

    * Credited your account with 6 months free Mozy service.

    Reply
  • Interesting discussion here.

    I’ve been using online backups for about 10 years, I’d guess. Started through Quicken/Connected.com which evolved into Iron Mountain. When it got to the point where I was paying $25/month for a handful of gigs & had SO MUCH more that really needed to be backed up offsite, someone mentioned Jungle Disk/Amazon. I’ve been with them for over a year, but it seems they have the same problem Mozy does with big files…I regularly get the Windows Delayed Write Failure error. Two days ago, I decided to try Carbonite’s trial & have been running it ever since. (My initial backup contains ~26 gigs.) So far, I’ve not received any WDWF errors. (YAY!)

    One feature I like about JD/Amazon is they have the option of a web version (for $12/year and I got my first year free.) This is nice if you want to access anything that’s backed up to JD from another computer & yet you don’t want to install any software on the other computer in order to do so.

    One thing I may end up doing is using both Carbonite & Jungle Disk. I’ll wait until my Carbonite trial is up first, b/c I want to “live” with Carbonite a few days after the initial backup completes. But at this point in time, I’m thinking Carbonite will be my main offsite backup & JD will serve as offsite storage (so I can access certain files from any computer, using only a web browser. I’ve also used LogMeIn but sometimes, my home computer shows up as “offline” & I’m not sure why, since it’s on 24/7.) Also, as someone who’s been in IT for over 30 years, one of my mantras is that a girl can never be too rich, too thin or have too many backups. 😉 (I also keep a backup of important files (including the really large home movie filess of our family) on a WD Passport in our safe deposit box!)

    Anyway, I would also like to commend Mr. Friend & Mr. Pallalola for participating directly in this discussion.

    Reply
  • I believe the problem with large files is do to lack of what’s called block level incremental backup. Another blog recently posted a letter from Mozy tech support reminding the user not to interrupt his backup in the middle of backing up a large file because it would have to start all over again. The right way to do big files, of course, is to break them up into small blocks so that if you decide to shut off your PC in mid-backup (or if you lose your Internet connection temporarily, which happens frequently) the backup resumes right where it left off.

    Dave Friend

    Reply
  • Well Mozy finally got me my second restore yesterday, and guess what… I plugged in the drive to my OS X 10.5.4 MacBook Pro and I was prompted with the initialize drive message again. So this is the second time this has happened. The first time I spoke to a tech support manager and he said “that shouldn’t happen, OS X can read NTFS natively.” So I’m back to not having a restore from Mozy.

    Reply
  • @James, sorry to hear of your Mozy sorrows…Nothing worse than thinking you’ve got a good backup system & then realizing it’s not. (Which I guess is another reason I’m thinking I may continue to use Jungle Disk in conjunction with Carbonite in conjunction with the onsite backups to other physical disks.) I keep telling my husband I don’t know if I’m getting totally whack when it comes to security (I’ve also begun using TrueCrypt on disks that have sensitive info) & backup or what. 😉 But I’m a long time power user and the thought of a total computer loss (IE flood, fire, theft) with no good backup is scary. HOPEFULLY, the Mozy crew will be able to get their act together & get a good backup to you soon.

    Reply
  • @Susie I hope so too. I’m in constant communication with a senior support person at Mozy. I was just told that before the backup disk went out it got plugged into a Mac and a Windows machine and the partition came up on both. I have to say I’m really disgusted by this whole experience. I was starting to feel better after the higher ups got involved but now that doesn’t seem to make a difference I’m feeling anxious about my data again.

    Reply
  • @Dave Friend: Absolutely, your approach to backing up large files makes perfect sense! JD says they do block level updates, but for some reason, I do get the WDWF message on a regular basis. Per this fairly recent post in the JD forum, (not posted by me, but the exact scenario I experience), it’s obvious that as of 7/9/8, JD does not play nice with big files: http://forum.jungledisk.com/viewtopic.php?t=16061&highlight=delayed+write+failure

    I do not use JD’s backup program. I forget why, but IIRC, earlier versions did not allow multiple backup sets, although they do now. So I have been using SyncBack to do nightly/weekly/monthly scheduled backups to the JD drive. Unfortunately, when you experience the WDWF error, Syncback shows the backup worked hunky, dory fine. (I think b/c as far as Syncback is concerned, everything went to the cache just fine.) But then JD generates the WDWF errors & no, the file is NOT backed up. I’ve been having to run a compare program comparing my originals to what’s on the JD virtual drive. I suppose it’s worth it to insure I have a good backup…but overall, what a waste of time & effort. A backup program (like any other program) should just work.

    So far, I’m liking Carbonite. I do want to see how it goes once all the files are backed up & the dailies go.

    Regarding your earlier question about “unlimited” and the guy with a gazillion gigs…speaking for myself only…If I were to have that much data backed up, I wouldn’t mind paying more. If it gets to the point where you need to make some changes, perhaps a pricing similar to Amazon’s S3 service – pay for what you use. I don’t mind paying for my offsite backups, within reason. I work from home & have alot of work related info, personal business info, personal fun stuff, medical info for my family, backups of my PDA, genealogy info, photos & (since I’m going as paperless as possible) alot of scans of papers, taxes, bills, documents, warranties, etc. But since I pay for this myself, it must be a “reasonable” amount for a power home user.

    Sorry to be so long winded & thank you for your time.

    Susie

    Reply
  • @Dave Friend: Oh, forgot to mention, I do like the simplicity of Carbonite. With ALL my prior online backup systems, I would need to go into the program & see what was being backed up, folder by folder. It’s SO much easier to use Explorer & see those dots!

    Reply
  • Susie, your comment about encrypting your disk touches a nerve with me. Check this out:
    As reported by By Ellen Nakashima, Washington Post Staff Writer, on Friday, August 1, 2008, “Federal agents may take a traveler’s laptop computer or other electronic device to an off-site location for an unspecified period of time without any suspicion of wrongdoing, as part of border search policies the Department of Homeland Security recently disclosed. An increasing number of international travelers have reported that their laptops, cellphones and other digital devices had been taken — for months, in at least one case — and their contents examined. The policies state that officers may “detain” laptops “for a reasonable period of time” to “review and analyze information.” This may take place “absent individualized suspicion.”

    The policies cover “any device capable of storing information in digital or analog form,” including hard drives, flash drives, cellphones, iPods, pagers, beepers, and video and audio tapes. ”

    So I don’t think you’re “whack” at all. It’s a real concern these days. Luckily it still takes a court order to get your backups, and even then they are 100% encrypted, and good luck to them trying to break a 1024-bit key.

    Dave Friend, CEO
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • Carbonite stopped working a couple of weeks ago (red/yellow logo). “Customer Service” suggested a reinstall which failed numerous times. Then “CS” suggested the problem was Adaware, which I removed. Still had the same problem. Carnonite fails to reinstall, (error message saying server must be down) but I get an email message saying it has been reinstalled. Now “CS” says the problem must be McAfee and wants me to uninstall it. No way am I doing that. If McAfee is conflicting with Carbonite there would be a million computers with the same issue. What the @#$%@@*! is going on?

    Reply
  • @Snaps – Sorry to hear that you’re having trouble with Carbonite. Security software can sometimes interfere with any program that uses your network and Internet connection as heavily as Carbonite does. We do our best to stay in touch with the manufacturers of security software to stay on their “White Lists” so that this isn’t a problem for our customers, but any modification to your security software settings can override the white lists and cause a problem.

    In most cases, you can just go into the Exceptions settings for your security software and add carboniteservice.exe, carboniteui.exe, and carbonitesetup.exe – if your security software needs to know which ports to use, enable bidirectional access on ports 25 (SMTP), 53 (DNS), 80 (HTTP), and 443 (SSL).

    There are times when adding these exceptions doesn’t resolve the issue for the installer – and in those times the simplest and quickest solution is to temporarily uninstall the security software, complete your installation of Carbonite, and then reinstall your security software. This has the added benefit for many security programs of causing them to regenerate the prompts that ask you whether to “allow” a program like Carbonite to use the Internet.

    If you’re still having trouble, please send a note to customersupport @ carbonite.com with “ATTN: LEN” in the subject line and I’ll make sure we get your issue resolved quickly.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I can’t find definite information on this so I thought I’d ask here

    Does or doesn’t Carbonite erase files after 30 days if they are not on my hard drive? As in can I upload my files to Carbonite for storage from an external drive and chuck it?

    thanks

    Reply
  • I do wish Carbonite had a message board. I do think after X number of days, if you delete the file from your computer, that Carbonite deletes it as well. IOW, Carbonite functions more as a backup of your computer, rather than offsite storage.

    I use Carbonite in conjunction with Jungle Disk, which functions more as offsite storage (as well as backup.)

    Reply
  • @Susie – that’s exactly correct, 30 days.
    @LJ – As Susie pointed out, Carbonite tries to match your computer (but gives you a thirty-day window to realize if you’ve deleted a file by mistake and need it back). So you wouldn’t be able to upload files for storage and then remove your local copies.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I install Carbonite two weeks ago and ever since I keep losing my internet connection. It always happens during a backup. I have to unplug my cable modem for a minute to get connection back. I disabled Carbonite for two days and never lost my connection until I enabled it. Questions or solutions?

    Reply
  • I’ve tried a significant restore from Mozy on my Mac now (I’d restored the occasional chunk of files in the past, mostly to test it, all on my PCs) and was really impressed: the 13 Gb restore streamed in from the servers at a few hundred kbyte/sec until the job was … well, nearly finished. Until all but two files had been restored, according to the error message. Which files? No idea: neither the error message nor the log files gave any indication. *headdesk*

    I suppose it’s marginally better than actually failing silently – but only marginally. I’m an old fashioned kind of guy: I think that restoring files should actually, you know, restore those files, not some subset thereof. I might settle for *knowing* which files have been omitted – but being told the restore has bits missing, without knowing which?!

    Reply
  • @Richard – your router or cable modem may be having trouble buffering all of the network traffic used by Carbonite during a backup operation. You could right-click your Carbonite tray icon and select “Low Priority” to slow down Carbonite so that it puts less stress on your devices, but I really recommend checking the devices for problems. The behavior you’re describing is not a common occurrence and likely indicates either a configuration problem or mechanical problem with either your router or cable modem.

    I hope this info helps.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • thanks for answering, and that’s unfortunate then… i was hoping to make Carbonite my 2nd backup

    w0uld be nice to have a permanent storage option

    Reply
  • @LJ…well, it sounds like it would even better to fix the problem, since I agree with Len that it sounds like a problem with your router or modem.

    Reply
  • FWIW, I’ve found I’ve been able to backup files from my USB drives by using one of two methods. One drive has a TrueCrypt container on it & when the TC container is mounted, Carbonite will back up the files. The other drive is not encrypted, but I mounted it as a folder & that works too.

    Reply
  • I have to say, I am completey annoyed with Carbonite. I have been singing it’s praises to all of my colleagues for months now and the one time I need it, I have no clue what’s going on??? My computer crashed and I am trying to restore the .pst file. It’s really the main reason I use carbonite. Once I set up the service I even contacted customer support to see if I had “marked” it correctly for download. I did, so I thought I was safe.

    I see it there, actually many different back-ups but after hours of trying to restore it, it says 100% restored but it’s not where to be found.

    HOW LONG SHOULD THIS TAKE???? On Friday I was prepared to spend the $20 to talk to a customer service rep but after waiting on hold for over thirty minutes, I said forget it. Then I went through two different chat sessions and after spending time there was told to “be patient”, it’s restoring. Now it is Sunday….. everything is restored that I need except the most import this .pst file. Where is it?

    I sent customer service an email, Len Pallazola (from this forum) and email…. still zip, nada, no answer. Carbonite really needs to step it up with customer service. To not have access to CS 24 hours for such a valid and important service is very unacceptable to me. I am so irrirated. This is important data and I just don’t understand why you can reach a person to solve this issue.

    Carbonite should realize that when their customers are contacting them for service typically they are frantic and scared because if they are contacting them, probably their computer has just crashed. I don’t get it? You would think that this type of service would be around 24/7 considering the nature of the business.

    If Carbonite cannot afford this then perhaps set up a user forum so the users can help each other.

    In the mean time, I would just like my .pst files restored.

    Reply
  • Jamey,

    I’m sorry I didn’t notice the message you sent to my attention via customer support; your message was received at about 11pm our time. I’ve reviewed your log files and see that your .pst file has started to restore (at the time the log files were generated on Friday about 9pm EST), but had not yet finished restoring. If it helps, the path to the file was C:Documents and SettingsJameyLocal SettingsApplication DataMicrosoftOutlookoutlook.pst – but it’s a fairly large file so it could take a while. Your log file shows that you selected to restore the file several times, both to its original location and to your desktop. (I didn’t check to see whether you selected other locations besides those two, but you may find multiple copies once the restore completes if you selected multiple destinations.)

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manaager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Thanks Len. You guys should put forums like this (although I know it’s a blog and comments) on your site so that customers know there is someone there. It’s really scary to have your computer crash and no one to help you through it….. how long do you think it will take?

    Jamey

    Reply
  • Jamey, I just sent you an e-mail with some instructions on how to send me your log files. Once I’ve reviewed them I can give some better input on how far along the restore is.

    We do have a commentable blog on our website (www.carbonite.com/blog) but like any blog, it’s not really the best method to communicate with customer support. I like the idea of adding support forums to our website and I’ll share that idea with our design team; it may be something we can add in the future.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manaager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • Apparently Carbonite for the Mac is due “mid-2008”; I’m hoping that really does mean sometime soon (or that I can get into the beta!), since Mozy has now decided to ignore my file exclusions and try to back up my 30 Gb Parallels hard drive image. This, of course, means it’s now a week since my last Mozy backup with no certainty of ever completing another. Between that, the unexplained failure and the lack of reply from Mozy support, I’m about ready to jump ship somewhere.

    Reply
  • James,

    To sign up for the Carbonite Mac beta, send a note to beta@ carbonite.com with “MAC BETA” in the subject line and you’ll be added to the list. You should hear something from our beta team within a few days after your message is received. (Any other Mac users, feel free to do so also!)

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola
    Manaager, Customer Service Systems
    Carbonite, Inc.
    http://www.carbonite.com

    Reply
  • I signed up for Carbonite a week ago and suspected that they throttle the speeds. Then I found this blog entry. It looks to me like it's capped t about 2.5GB a day. I have 5mbps upstream. I was able to upload 1.5GB in the first four hours and at the end of 24 hrs it had uploaded 2.6 GB. Hard to believe they are not throttling.

    Whats the point in having a backup service if you can't back things up fast enough.

    Reply
  • Vinodh: There's no daily cap. I think what you're seeing is just the normal allocation of our bandwidth among the many computers that are trying to send data at the same time. Also, if you touch your keyboard or mouse, Carbonite slows down automatically in order to stay out of your way while you're working. If your computer is idle, it will back up faster. If you use your computer, the rate at which data is transferred will drop until you stop using it.

    Dave Friend, CEO

    Reply
  • I have discovered that Carbonite will not backup Microsoft Visual Source Safe (VSS) databases. I cannot get Carbonite to automatically backup files that VSS keeps creating with the ".a" extension. Apparently there are a number of files of a certain extension type that Carbonite will not automatically backup.

    I have contacted Carbonite about this a number of times and they just keep responding that I should right click on the file to have it backed up. Of course you can always right click on a specific file and have it backed up, but to have to go into my VSS database everyday looking for files with ".a" extension that are not backed up and have them backed up manually is not a real backup system. Obviously they are not reading my email message.

    Reply
  • THE MOST IMPORTANT ADVANTAGE MOZY HAS OVER Carbonite is it BACKS UP EXTERNAL DRIVES!!! 🙂 As long as the drives show up as "fixed" (they're listed as regular hard drives in My Computer rather than "external") they can be backed up.

    And yeah the Carbonite restoration process is absolutely confusing, and I've used computers since the early '80s…took me a week to figure out how to get things back properly.

    Reply
  • Holy crap, guys! What's so hard about restoring from Carbonite? You just open the Carbonite drive icon on the desktop, click on the file, folder, or drive you want to restore, and click "Restore." How the f*** could it be any easier? If you're backing up an external drive with Mozy, DON'T unplug the drive. I learned that the hard way. Otherwise, it works fine.

    Reply
  • I am so glad I never Bought and Paid for the Carbonite service, I didn't like how my service Just stopped working… one day, after less than four weeks of use. I now know that trial accounts are treated differently than full service accounts, even through I was suppose to have One Whole Year, under the agreement I understood. I am letting everyone I know of my Dissatisfaction with Carbonite backup service. I will be using another backup Arrangement from now on, doubtful I will ever use Carbonite ever again, Again I will be telling my experiences with The Carbonite backup service, to anyone and everyone. Now I am having trouble removing the Carbonite from the PC in question, If I have to do a Full re-install of My Operating System, and programs, That will be also included, as part of my "sad tale", I will be talking about this, at our Computer Club meeting in about Three weeks. Just to let you know "Not A Happy Customer" Al

    Reply
  • The last reply says I had a One Year Trial of Carbonite Online Backup. it came from a Tax Preparation software. I did not have to Pay any Money for the Carbonite online backup service. it was free for My use and even then I found had Many serious problems even on my PC, oh it seemed to run on Windows Vista, But I still am NOT a Happy Carbonite online backup Customer!

    Reply
  • If only I had discovered your site before I loaded Carbonite. I went off the advice of that ass monkey Leo Laporte and now I have the Carbonite trojan.

    Reply
  • I am always amazed by the anti-Carbonite posts. I have been using it on various computers – where one is always Vista and one XP, and before that both were XP – for several years now with no problems of note. Only once did backing-up stop. That was now a couple of years ago and after a couple of e-mails was resolved. Some sort of problem with an updated release of the app…apologies for my imprecision, it was a while ago and I am no expert.

    Fine, have an opinion but some of these posts make me wonder how a person who is little better than a novice [me] can have no problems, yet those who purport to know what they are doing do.

    Or is there some sort of vendetta going on? A friend uses Mozy but has no better nor worse time with it. It works fine for him.

    I hasten to add that I have no relationship with either business and know nothing about them either.

    Reply
  • Kmuzu, please don't go around spreading rumors. If you claim installing a valid/legal copy of Carbonite loads a trojan (which it doesn't), please cite (RELIABLE) sources such as McAfee, Norton, Sophros, etc.

    Reply
  • ER…Sophos… 😉

    Reply
  • What people are saying about Carbonite's Customer noService is true. If readers don't believe it, buy it and try it and see for themselves! Then theycan feel screwed too! I've contacted them twice, to no avail, to ask why their product causes my WinXp machine to take an extra long time to complete the Boot-up process. It sort of hangs up for a good while, then moves on.

    Reply
  • Hi Brotherman,

    I'm sorry to hear that you had trouble getting an issue resolved. Please send me a note at Len.Pal @ carbonite.com with your contact information and the best time to get in touch, and I'll have one of our senior technical support agents reach out to you.

    Sincerely,

    Len Pallazola

    Manager, Customer Service Systems

    Carbonite, Inc.

    Reply
  • I'm throttled after 20GB. Mozy it is and if they start to throttle then I'm done with them. With Mozy I just did 2GB in 30 mins on Fios with 25/15MB plan.

    I wish Carbonite charged monthly because I would have $30+ more in my pocket because I would've pulled out. You will get 1 year out of me and that's it! F Carbonite…

    Reply
  • I subscribed for the free trial version of Carbonite. My subscription ends in approximately one day and Carbonite has backed up only 31% of info. I email them about the issue and I never heard anything from them. They suck big.

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  • Dear Carbonite Customer –

    We have been upgrading our network and uploads have been slower than normal. Restore speeds were not affected by this upgrade and remain very fast. As of Friday, January 17, a new 5gbps inbound pipe is operational and addressing this limitation. A posting concerning this network upgrade has been on our web site for the past week.

    Jeffrey Robison, VP

    Carbonite Customer Service

    Reply
  • I can't figure out how to uninstall the trial version of Carbonite. It's really slowed down my computer, and I can't live with it.

    When I go to uninstall programs in the control panel, Carbonite isn't listed as a program there.

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  • Carbonite's website tells you how to get rid of it. I'm free of it now. I can't tell you how much it bogged down my computer. I know other folks who use this and are happy, though. I guess they are "lighter" users than I am. I don't think it ever finished backing up my files, and that's what was slowing everything down. If you don't have so many files, you should be ok.

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  • We just signed up for Carbonite, unfortunately we messed up the email upon originating the account. (our fault totally) We then tried the Carbonite support page, which led us to the on line CHAT.

    This has to be worst support that I have ever seen in my life. Admitting that we goofed up, then Sonny P, asked us for the identifying information which I gave. Then was abruptly cut off from the Chat.

    OK no problem, I found myself in another 15 min queue waiting. Then a pleasant Dale D. came on line and I explained the situation and that I was disconnected from Sonny. Dale kindly switched me back to Sonny P. this lasted about 30 seconds after explained who I was and that I just needed to get the account straightened out so we could do our back up, the again was cut off.

    So, a third time I waited 10 more minutes to reconnected to Dale D. and I was a little short, and as soon as he realized who I was I pleaded not to chat with Sonny P again, but Dale decided to switch me over. After that I ended up in an open chat the indicated Sonny was listening, however never did reply. After 30 minutes of waiting and logging questions just looking to activate our account I ended the CHAT and called my credit card company to block the charge.

    I don’t know how a company like this can even stay in business. This is probably the worst customer experience I have ever had. Don’t waste your money, data, or time. If you do pray to god, you never have a problem.

    Reply
  • Jean – I am responsible for Carbonite customer service and apologize for your experience. I want to help make this right. Please reach out to me at jeffrey.robison (at) carbonite.com. I look forward to helping you. Jeff Robison, VP Carbonite Support

    Reply
  • wow, I am so unhappy with Carbonite. I just canceled my Carbonite after they lost over ten gigs of data.. actually it was there but Carbonite changed the drive letter .. so to get it back I had to download over 80 gigs and start over again.. they have the WORST customer support ever.. bye bye Carbonite, I will start over with someone else.

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  • I have been trying for days to match the original Carbonite upload speed but I am averaging less than 40 Kb…my Cox cable upload max is around 500Mb. how can I increase the Carbonite upload speed? I would prefer to stay with Carbonite but I will be looking for a faster product if the problem is not resolved.

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  • I love Mozy so much I install it on all my clients computers, great backup solution!

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  • I’m hitting my one year with Carbonite and I just canceled because the back up is not the same as what’s on my computer. It looks like an older back up and it’s not automatically updating. I tried contacting the support folks but they couldn’t help me. They gave me a file to add to my C: drive but that didn’t work like they said it would. I’m now trying to figure out how to get Carbonite off my computer so I can to Mozy. What a pain in the butt, I hope Mozy is better.

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  • With the amazing pricing/unlimited storage there has to be a catch. For Carbonite that catch is upload speed. Please note as of now (10/28/11) upload speeds are throttled back in this manner:
    up to 35 GB storage = 2 mb/s
    36-200 GB storage = 512 kb/s
    over 200GB storage = 100 kb/s

    In short, if you wanted to backup all the data on a 500gb harddrive the backup time would be approx 9 months. (This is not a typo. Nine months per a calculator that a Carbonite representative used to calculate it.)

    I was ready to hit send on the 3-year subscription but called to clarify a few things. 1) If you backup a file on your machine and delete it, you will only have access to that file for 30 days on the backup. 2) The FAQ says that you can’t backup software. The tech confirmed that if you have a .zip file or a .rar of the software, that will be (or can be configured to) be backed up.

    I would like to give credit where credit is due. I did have a great customer service rep on the phone within 5 minutes at noon on a weekday. He was very knowledgeable and helpful and took time to explain things even though I wasn’t a yet a customer. He said he couldn’t say anything about what is coming (regarding upload speeds) but suggested I check back in a week or two. Something seems to be cooking over there. I’ll be interested to see what it is.

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  • I am too thinking of cancelling Carbonite. I used it for over a year fine. Have over 270gigs backed up. But I recently got a new SSD, reinstalled my OS on that. So now what was my ‘D’ drive, with all of my data, is now ‘E’. Nothing else has changed, but there is no way to make Carbonite see the new drive as havign the same data. So I am going to have to re-upload. All 270gigs. Because Carbonite doesn’t have what should be a RIDICULOUSLY easy feature to code. Sucks because I have almost 10 months left in my subscription too. Oh well.

    Reply
  • Taylor: That would be a good point to switch, then – OK, you lose the 10 months of subscription, but you only have to re-upload the data once, whether to Carbonite or another provider.

    Personally, I’ve been very happy with Crashplan, backing my machines up to each other (I stuck a big external drive on my Mac Mini) as well as online. The little bit of data I tried to restore from Carbonite was never retrieved (Carbonite support gave up and gave me a service credit instead!); I’ve restored hundreds of Gb from Crashplan without the slightest glitch. Upload, download, OS upgrades, nothing seems to upset it – and you get much more control over network traffic, too, if you want it. (Important documents backed up 24×7, but your big home movie stash only during the night? Easy!)

    Reply

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