CrashPlan is Shutting Down Its Consumer Backup Service

Posted on August 23, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Cloud, Windows with 24 Comments

CrashPlan is Shutting Down Its Consumer Backup Service

Code42 is shutting down CrashPlan for Home, its consumer cloud backup service. And it is directing customers to switch to Carbonite instead.

“Effective August 22, 2017, Code42 will no longer offer new—or renew—CrashPlan for Home subscriptions, and we will begin to sunset the product over several months,” the company revealed on its website. “CrashPlan for Home will no longer be available for use starting October 23, 2018.”

That’s a good amount of time for existing customers to find a new home for their data, but Code42 is recommending that they at least consider Carbonite, one of the leading cloud backup vendors for consumers.

“Carbonite offers simple, secure cloud backup for computers,” Code42 explains. “Subscriptions include free, award-winning customer support, 7 days a week.” Carbonite pricing starts at $59.99 per year per computer.

CrashPlan and I go way back: I used the service to back up various Windows Home Server- and Windows Server Essentials-based servers in the mid-2000s and recommended it to readers. And while the initial upload was glacially slow, the service itself was unlimited, so it was pretty ideal.

That said, you can’t actually use a consumer Carbonite plan to back up a home server if you’re still using such a thing. But Carbonite does offer office plans too, which start at $269.99 per year. Don’t be put off by the pricing: These plans are unlimited and cover an unlimited number of computers.

That said, those with small businesses may want to stick with CrashPlan. Code42 offers a CrashPlan for Small Business service, and it will migrate your existing subscription if you’d like to stay with the firm. The cost is $10 per month per computer.

In any event, a moment of silence, please.


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Comments (24)

24 responses to “CrashPlan is Shutting Down Its Consumer Backup Service”

  1. Jeff Jones

    I got that email from Crashplan too. Looks to me like Crashplan for Business is basically the same as the home edition, except more expensive and with a couple extra management options if you add on more people. Are home users adding too much tech support stress to their business or did they just realize they could charge more for the same service, so they are canceling the cheaper one?

    In any case, I'm thinking about trying Backblaze, when my current Crashplan subscription runs out.

    Backblaze is slightly cheaper than either Crashplan or Carbonite, and I like the fact that they put out a quarterly HDD failure report from their server farm.

    • PcGuy8088

      In reply to DataMeister:

      I would check the comments over on BackBlaze about Crashplan since people such as yourself were thinking of switching but one poster said that BackBlaze does not keep versions of files around as long as Crashplan does. They mentioned something like a 30 day limit to restore a deleted file after it was deleted from a system which I found very strange when I read it.,

    • Angusmatheson

      In reply to DataMeister:

      We use Backblaze and have been very happy with it. After a power outage an external power started getting funky. They had a replacement within a week. (I could have also downloaded it). I set it up for my parents too (mostly to protect their pictures) and it is working without them having to think about it at all! Love that,

    • MikeCerm

      In reply to DataMeister:

      I have a feeling that it isn't about tech support stress, rather the cost vs. the volume of data to store. I have a feeling that probably a majority of their "home" users are people who are essentially abusing their system. The people who sign up for a service like Crashplan are likely storing many terabytes, mostly pirated stuff, or people who use it for small business-like operations (like photographers or videographers) who are also storing many many terabytes. At $10/month, Crashplan will lose money on those users forever.

      • Minok

        In reply to MikeCerm:

        That was a thought I had as well, though I find that hard to believe after some thought. The upload to the Crashplan servers is increadibly slow of a small pipe running in the background, so if you had terrabytes of data it would likely take a year to get it all backed up.

    • lvthunder

      In reply to DataMeister:

      I like Backblaze a lot. I also like the fact they will send you a hard drive with your data on it (for a fee) if your system dies and you need to get it all back.

  2. Cdorf

    I was shocked by that email I got yesterday, I had tried Carbonite before and found Crashplan to be superior

  3. Luka Pribanić

    What's the point? Change to different service just to see it get closed as well? My external USB backup never gets "canceled" or "expired", never needs "renewal", and at the end... Costs less. Do they at least offer to mograte your existing.backups from CrashPlan to Carbonite? Whishfull thinking.. Yet that's the only right thing to do, if they want to keep customers. If not, they are just taking your money for pretty much nothing

    • Jeremy Petzold

      In reply to LuxZg:

      Your USB backup is also on site and not replicated.

      An important file doesn't exist unless you have 3 copies, 2 on different media (not same drive) and at least 1 is off site.

  4. Minok

    Carbonite was the first I considered for cloud backup but the clients refusal to back up mounted NAS drives that are not physically in the machine have eliminated them from consideration. The way forward for me, at least , will likely be a move to Amazon's services.

  5. nanovak

    Has anybody tried as a replacement or used them in the past? I'm definitely going to miss Crashplan - went with them when Mozy's pricing went insane a few years ago. $270/yr is a lot comparatively for not the same level of features, and iDrive lets you back up multiple PCs on the same account directly, plus supports local backups, etc. They've also got a service where you can seed your backup with a shipped HDD and save time (and bandwidth cap) on the initial backup.

  6. thechise

    Never had a problem with Backblaze. Started using it a couple of years ago after getting a deal. I used to use Crashplan, but switched because it used to be a Java based app on Mac...don't know if it still is. Never used Carbonite although they make a pretty good utility for backing up Android SMS messages for what that is worth.

    I think they all do a good enough job backing stuff up, it all comes down to pricing and how easy it is to restore.

  7. DrPRW

    I am trialing BackBlaze after receiving the email. It has uploaded almost 1TB in data in one day (way faster than Crashplan's initial backup). It allows multiple drives and is unlimited for similar price. Definitely buying once trial is over.

  8. BMcDonald

    I too was a bit shocked - but not surprised at the announcement. I love Crashplan and it' s been rock solid so I simply took them up on the SMB plan.

    Within my backup model where 3 copies of the data means it's truly backed up - I have our workstations (copy 1) backing up to the server (copy 2) which in turn sends the data to CP (Copy 3).

    120 year is very reasonable for a single one machine - but considering I get my remaining Home subscription free from now thru August 2018 and then a 75% discount (only @2.75 a month) until August 2019 - that is fine value for my scenario.

    I switched everything this morning and even the software on the our server was instantly upgraded to CrashPlanPro in the background with no intervention from me. I got my first CrashPlanPro backup report about an hour later.

    Could not have been more seamless.


  9. garethrose

    couldn't believe it when i got the email.

    I've used CrashPlan for years and have all my family on it in a mesh of backing up to each others houses. What i liked was that i could backup anything to my uncles house at no per MB cost as i just purchased a ln external HD that sits at his house.

    mainly i like that my backup was off site, i never really liked my backup sitting on a HD that was sat in the same house - if anything happens to the house, losing the photos of the kids when they were young would make it worse.

    id like an alternative that allows peer to peer backup, which carbonite don't allow. Also the default carbonite plan don't allow backup of an external HD.

    at least they have given us a large amount of time to find an alternative.

    I'm not going to rush to a decision - ill think carefully (and hope Paul also find something to help ?)

  10. rlcronin

    I've decided to use a combination of OneDrive and Google Backup and Sync to replace CrashPlan. I have each machine backup its documents folder to Google. I backup my music, photos and videos to my Synology NAS since they're too big to fit in the amount of free storage I get from Google. I used to back that all up to CrashPlan, but I switched to have it backed up from my Synology to my 1TB OneDrive. As an aside, it was a bit of a pain to have to run around to all my machines and reconfigure the OneDrive client to not mirror that stuff to every machine. The client kept giving me strange error messages and refused to save my changes. I eventually got it to work by pausing the upload from the NAS. For disaster recovery I use Macrium Reflect to image the C drive of each machine (saving the images to the D drive daily and a failsafe copy to the NAS once a week).

  11. gregsedwards

    I used to be an ardent Carbonite subscriber for many years, but they burned me. At the time, I was running Carbonite on my Windows Home Server box, which I was using a media NAS solution. I had all of my movies, shows, music, family photos and videos, and documents stored on the WHS, which was backed up to Carbonite. Of course WHS also had the option to back up all of the PCs on your network, but I didn't choose to include any of that stuff in my Carbonite backup. I used it reliably for several years, and probably had no more than 500 GB of content in total (this was 2008-12 ish).

    Carbonite arbitrarily decided that running their personal client on a server was outside their licensing model, presumably because their model was to pay for a separate subscription on each of your multiple PCs. Their solution was to move me to a SMB plan, which was going to take my annual cost from $60 to over $700. And with that, I packed up my data, got a 4 TB WD MyCloud, and eventually ported everything over to OneDrive. I still use the MyCloud as a media server for ripped movies and shows, but everything else - family photos and videos, music, documents - just lives on OneDrive. And I haven't looked back.

    I know everyone's use cases are a bit different, but folks, most of you don't need to backup your entire PC anymore. It's much more practical to keep your data somewhere safe in the cloud (or in a hybrid solution like MyCloud) and just reset the PC if/when you ever have a catastrophic problem. It works and really simplifies your life.

  12. jkchan83

    I am also a longtime CrashPlan user. I have a Synology NAS along with multiple PCs backed up to CrashPlan. One thing to note: CrashPlan will only migrate your existing backup if it is under 5TB. My NAS backup is at 8TB, meaning I have to start over, even if I move to a Small Business plan.

    Right now, my plan is consolidate all of my backups onto my NAS and just keep that on a CrashPlan Small Business plan ($120/year). I'll need to get a few more hard drives for the NAS, but that's small potatoes vs. BackBlaze B2 or Synology's C3 backup services. Any other ideas?

    • Waethorn

      In reply to jkchan83:

      I've been looking at QNAP lately. You can get Seagate Ironwolf NAS hard drives included with those for a bit of a discount. The TVS-453B[mini] has an Apollo Lake Celeron quad-core that can support virtualization for some utility or productivity apps (you should upgrade the RAM to 8GB if you do that). It's relatively cheap. I find the Synology ones are priced quite a bit higher even when comparing apples to apples.

      Also, there's the new Hardkernel HC-1 2.5" single-drive NAS. Cheap option. Kind of neat too. There's some talk that they'll come out with a dual-drive option eventually. You could use OpenMediaVault on it, or if you wanna read through some documentation, you can alternatively use OwnCloud.

      • karlinhigh

        In reply to Waethorn: I've been looking at QNAP lately.

        How about FreeNAS? Hardware-independent, so when a mainboard fails there are no worries about finding replacements to read the drives.

        • Waethorn

          In reply to karlinhigh:

          It only supports ZFS AFAIK. Other systems are better at working with multiple filesystems. From what I can see, their own comparison of their software compared to OpenMediaVault has woefully-outdated information.

          OpenMediaVault supports RSync via the GUI, so you can sync multiple NAS devices together, which makes it a good option for stacking multiples of these together. Why get just a dumb 2.5" USB hard drive enclosure, when for a few extra bucks you can make it a smarter NAS device? Think about this though: each hard drive has it's own NAS CPU and computational power, so you get additional hardware redundancy over just one multi-bay single unit. With a single NAS with multiple drive bays, sure you can have a hard drive die, but if the unit itself dies, you're screwed. These are cheap to replace too.

          Also, FreeNAS is published under a BSD license and not the GPL. And OMV has better options for extensibility.

  13. Vadalus

    Don't forget they're offering 75% off the first year of small biz offering so might be worth keeping for a while longer yet.

    i still don't know of another service which has an autonomous headerless service for my readynas which has been happily chugging away for years

  14. jeffrye

    I've been using Crashplan for years and have been happy with it. However, as I've researched a replacement, I stumbled across Cloudberry (and Arq and Duplicati but I think I like Cloudberry the most). Their model is that you get the client (there's a free version and a $30 version) and back up to where ever you want - local disk, NAS, OneDrive, AWS, Azure, etc.

    My current backup is about 50 GB which would cost around 25 cents a month if I backed up to Amazon Glacier. This may actually save me money.

  15. Polycrastinator

    I am, in fact, still using a Windows Home Server with Crashplan Home. I've been thinking for a while I need to move over to a NAS and AWS or similar for offsite storage, but I'd been hoping to postpone that cost until next year. Looks like I have to find that money now.