online backup storage

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online backup storage

Postby madeye » Mar 29th, '14, 21:16

I am on the lookout for a good online backup storage that supports rsync and ssh. As there are many suppliers out there I would like to know if any of you have experience with some.

Right now I am tending towards strongspace, as they seem to have the features I need. But I am open to suggestions.

Some that I haven't made up my mind about are:
  • OLScs Unlimited Online Storage
  • Elephant drive (not sure about this. It's not rsync AFAICT.)
  • Spider Oak. (Doesn't seem to support rsync, but has a commandline version of it's own sync program)

Some that I have discarded are:
  • RsynIT (too expensive)
  • rsync.net (also on the pricy side compared to others)
  • Jungle disk (I don't like the idea of paying per MB or bandwidth. I prefer flat-rate)
  • Mozy (windows / mac only)
  • Carbonite (windows only)
  • Bakop (too small storage)
  • iBackup (found some really bad reviews on this one. Seems they are more scam than real)
  • Crashplan. (Needs xorg. Prefer not to have that on my server.)
  • Justcloud (BEWARE stay away from them. They are ripping you off!)
  • Backblaze (windows / mac only)
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Re: online backup storage

Postby jiml8 » Apr 1st, '14, 21:54

How do you handle encryption of your files over rsync?

Surely you don't store unencrypted data on anybody's cloud service? And if you encrypt it, it needs to be YOU and nobody else who has the key. Do any of these sites let you do post-transfer encryption?
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Re: online backup storage

Postby madeye » Apr 2nd, '14, 10:06

I haven't really decided if and how to handle encryption yet. For one these data are not that sensitive that I actually need to encrypt them.
If NSA wants to look at them, they are welcome to do so. Actually if they could let me know, then I don't really need to make a backup. They can handle that for me as well :D

Seriously though. I have thought about using tar with a password, and replace the archive once every month. I'll need to use tar anyway, as I need to keep the permissions in place on the files.
I do run a local backup, and it's only a part of this that I want to store remotely.

I have actually talked to the company who hosts my homepage. They have no problem with me using storage with them for my backups. Of course I need to upgrade my current plan, as it cannot handle the backup size. So they also "win" on this solution.
But I must say I was surprised as many hosting companies directly prohibit this kind of storage. (I've got a written permission!).
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Re: online backup storage

Postby jiml8 » Apr 2nd, '14, 20:01

So, your basic answer is: "I can't". That does not surprise me. But then, I am not a proponent of using the cloud anyway; it is not only a massive security violation, it is a genuine risk to the safety of the data because you are depending on them to do their job properly. And if they don't, you'll find that out when you need it the most. Of course, the same can be said for you; if you aren't handling local backups correctly then you are inviting trouble too.

I disagree at a very fundamental level with the idea that "this data isn't critical and I don't care if anyone looks at it." That logic is identical to "if I'm not doing anything wrong, I don't have to worry..."

The problem, of course, is that "what is wrong" today might not be the same as "what is wrong" tomorrow, so you could get badly bitten following that philosophy. Also, of course, when you choose to only encrypt sensitive information, you immediately point attention at that information, whereas if you routinely encrypt everything...nobody knows what is important and what isn't.

My default is to encrypt everything. I only DON'T encrypt when the effort involved is too great and the benefit of encryption is minimal. Specifically, this applies to accessing websites that I want to visit that are unfriendly to TOR, or to sending casual emails to friends who don't support encryption. Otherwise, I encrypt everything.
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Re: online backup storage

Postby madeye » Apr 2nd, '14, 20:12

I actually agree with everything you write, and also know that I shouldn't trust anyone. Which also means I should encrypt everything. I'm just a little lazy sometimes.
In what way are you encrypting your data/backup, if I may ask?
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Re: online backup storage

Postby jiml8 » Apr 2nd, '14, 21:14

My workstation has 6 hard drives in it and many different partitions, for historical reasons.

Every partition is encrypted using dmcrypt/LUKS except /, and every directory in / that might contain information other than the system itself is symlinked to another volume, where it is encrypted. On a daily basis, / is backed up to another partition on a different drive (which is encrypted), and /home is backed up to another partition on a different drive (also, of course, encrypted). At intervals, I make backup copies to one of two USB drives - which are encrypted. One of the USB drives is kept at a business location where I am a partner, and I periodically swap which drive is kept there, as I make these backups.

Project information that is rapidly changing (associated with current work) is frequently tarred and gzipped, then gpg encrypted and copied to my website (hosting service doesn't know about it and these files are not that huge anyway), and also copied to a server in another location that I control. I will do this at least every couple of days when I am busy with dev activity on these projects.
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Re: online backup storage

Postby madeye » Apr 3rd, '14, 21:01

Sounds like you've got quite the setup. 8-)
I have promised myself that I will look at how to encrypt my harddrive when I get the time. Especially on my laptop that would be a good idea I think.

As for backing up to the cloud. I have been looking into using duplicity. It uses encryption with my keys, and makes a rsync-like upload to the cloud. AFAICT it will make incremental uploads as well.
I will report back when I have played a little with it.
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Re: online backup storage

Postby jiml8 » Apr 4th, '14, 17:33

When you encrypt your partitions or drives, one thing it is VERY important to do is make a backup copy of the front end of the encrypted partition, where the hashes and keys are stored. If you do not do this, and have ANY kind or problem with the HD that corrupts that segment of the partition, your information will be absolutely unrecoverable.

I keep a directory in my /home that contains images of the master boot records and the key section of each partition. This directory (naturally) is backed up when /home is backed up (daily) so I have copies of this data on two different drives on this system. Also, copies arrive on the USB drives. I've never lost any data from that particular problem, and hope to never have that experience.
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Re: online backup storage

Postby doktor5000 » Apr 4th, '14, 20:29

jiml8 wrote:When you encrypt your partitions or drives, one thing it is VERY important to do is make a backup copy of the front end of the encrypted partition, where the hashes and keys are stored. If you do not do this, and have ANY kind or problem with the HD that corrupts that segment of the partition, your information will be absolutely unrecoverable.

Yup. Can only recommend reading the excellent cryptsetup FAQ: http://code.google.com/p/cryptsetup/wik ... a_Recovery
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