Households with multiple computers face a unique problem, when it comes to saving all their information; how to backup data from various PCs and smartphones in one place.
CrashPlan and SOS Online Backup offered the best service, for backing up multiple computers, while our three remaining contenders each have a unique selling point. You have your laptop, your partner has theirs, of course the kids play with their own devices all day.
Finding a way to protect everyone’s information is important, whether it be for work, play or anything else. The answer is a central location where everyone can save their information, where mobile devices can also be backed up. We found five such places, a result of which, we now present the best online backup services for multiple computers.
Backing up multiple devices can be expensive, unless you find a service that saves everything in one location. Online backup service providers often have plans designed to cater specifically for such needs.
CrashPlan for Business
$ 10.00 per month Unlimited GBStorage All Plans
|Visit CrashPlan for BusinessCrashPlan for Business Review|
SOS Online Backup
$ 4.99 per month 50 GBStorage All Plans
|Visit SOS Online BackupSOS Online Backup Review|
$ 19.95 per month 600 GBStorage All Plans
|Visit ZoolzZoolz Review|
$ 8.00 per month Unlimited GBStorage All Plans
|Visit LivedriveLivedrive Review|
$ 5.00 per month Unlimited GBStorage All Plans
|Visit BackblazeBackblaze Review|
Why Online Backup Services Are Important to Your Company
Some companies limit the number of systems one can backup, so that people don’t abuse the service. This is especially true for services that offer unlimited online backup. While there is generally no limit on the amount of storage, you can only backup one computer per account. Unless, of course, you’re using a multi computer option, like CrashPlan.
Online backup services that don’t have an unlimited option generally allow users to connect an unlimited amount of devices, because they know users will soon run out of storage. There you have it, either you get unlimited cloud backup for one user and you have to purchase more plans for each family member, or you opt for a limited online backup service, that can backup and connect an unlimited amount of devices (generally).
For families and small groups (5 computers or less), their plans are perfectly adequate. Families and small businesses can share files among themselves, even if there is no sharing feature available, via the storage provider of their selection.
By using a provider who offers multi-system licenses, you save money and can easily access files, furthermore eliminating the need to email anything. A small note before we proceed, this is not a full in-depth review of each service. For that, simply click the “Read review” button.
What’s on offer here is a general overview of each service, what we like about it as well as a pros and cons list. With that disclaimer out of the way, onward we march!
CrashPlan offers truly unlimited storage for multiple systems. By purchasing the family plan, everyone in a family can save all their data to one central location. While they don’t have a true sharing feature, anyone who has access to the account can view everyone else’s data.
CrashPlan is one of the few online backup providers that offers true unlimited storage. The account is managed by one email and password, but everyone can backup everything to the same location, there are no limits on file type or size. The service offers unlimited file retention as well, so nothing is ever lost.
CrashPlan allows consumers to not only add an additional computer, they also let customers backup any external hard drives attached to their systems. This offers a fuller umbrella of protection for multiple computer systems and their HDDs.
Other Reasons We Like CrashPlan
We loved that CrashPlan offers truly unlimited storage for the entire family. The service offers a plan that allows for storage for up to 10 users (pretty generous).
With the paid family plan, users get continuous up-to-the minute backup, of course, users can also choose to modify their backup schedule if they so desire. Each member can access all saved files, in effect, sharing information from one another without the use of a traditional share link.
- Unlimited file type
- Multiple system backup
- Military-grade encryption
- A lot of options
- No sharing or syncing
- Slow backups outside of the U.S.
SOS Online Backup
SOS Online Backup offers protection for up to five computers, and a user can also include their tablet and smartphone under this protection plan at no additional charge. SOS Online Backup’s multiple computer plan protects up to five computers.
Simply install their software and then log in with a central email address and password, after that, a user is welcome to download the mobile app (works on smartphones and tablets).
Attached external hard drives are also included in the multi-computer backup plan. You can delete files from a computer (freeing up space) and not have to worry about it being deleted from the backup account, if you choose to go in and delete the file later on, it must be done manually.
The service retains multiple file versions, for as long as you choose to keep them. Of course, true archiving does make it difficult to navigate through a folder you wish to restore, if it has a lot of content that hasn’t been clean out. Which might be too much of a hassle for some consumers.
Other Reasons We Like SOS Online Backup
We like that users can get protection for up to five computers in one plan. The price is affordable with monthly costs running only about $40. However, SOS Online Backup believes in creating an archive protected by military-grade encryption.
It is more expensive than other options, however, we feel it is worth the cost. Multi-plan includes the ability to protect an unlimited number of smartphones and tablets, running Android or iOS operating systems.
- Protects five PCs
- Military-grade security
- External hard drives included
- Removed unlimited cloud option
- No sharing feature
- No Windows Mobile support
Zoolz is designed from the ground up for multiple-computer homes. The Home plan protects up to five systems, allowing users to share, import and export data among them. Zoolz is one of the few backup services, that’s actually designed from the ground up to work with multiple computers, and provide cold backup.
The service also has a single user side, which provides very limited space, unfortunately.
Unless you’ve purchased at least 20GB of active storage, your files will be frozen and a data restoration order must be sent, requests take a minimum of two hours to begin transferring.
Other Reasons We Like Zoolz
It is best to go ahead and sign up for a three to five user option, so you can choose different cold storage amounts, from 500GB to 1TB. Zoolz also provides a true archive system, where nothing is ever removed.
Files stored within an active storage account can be accessed via the web, mobile devices and be shared among users.The 500GB option is sharable among three users, the 1TB plan is designed for up to five users.
External hard drive backups
Hybrid of active & cold storage
- Lacks unlimited option
- Active storage must be separate
- Abysmal customer support
Livedrive Pro Suite
Livedrive Pro Suite is a multi-user service designed for households. The service offers protection for up to five PCs, while letting users sync and share information freely. Livedrive understands how difficult it is for families with multiple computers to save all their data in a single location. The Pro Suite offers a solution for families with up to five systems.
With the Pro Suite, users can save and sync files, alongside items which are backed up to the cloud. Restoring files is simple, however, users need to download an additional app to restore files. Overall, we think Livedrive’s user experience can be improved but they’ve done a great leap forward with v3 of their software that was released earlier this year.
The data stored within the service is sharable, between registered users of a household, or with anyone else you choose. Livedrive Pro Suite also has a briefcase feature, which syncs files to the other systems in your account. While it’s called the Pro Suite, and does offer multiple computer backup, it is not intended for businesses.
Other Reasons We Like Livedrive Pro Suite
Despite the name, Livedrive Pro Suite is for home users. We wouldn’t advise using this solution in a business environment because businesses need better reliability and support.
It allows families with up to five systems to save all their precious information and share it with others. Those who have multiple devices, will find the sync feature helps them stay on top of any document, without having to email it or add it to a flash drive, when moving it from one system to another.
- Unlimited backup
- Syncs files between users
- Advanced user features
- Personal plan lacks multi-user option
- Hidden pricing features
- User interface could be better
Backblaze backs up consumer and business data from multiple computers with ease, add to that it’s on-the-go access and military-grade security, the service becomes a very viable option for many groups. Backblaze is best known for its single user service, which is cheap, unlimited, secure and simple to use.
However, for those who have multiple computer systems, the service isn’t entirely off limits either. Yes, users still have to have individual licenses, but Backblaze does offer a solution, where administrators can verify backups and manage restores. Backblaze also offers military-grade security.
The service uses two-factor authentication and provides a personalized encryption key — set by the user, for added security. While each computer has to have its own license, each account can be used to backup a PC or Mac, plus external hard drives and mobile devices.
Other Reasons We Like Backblaze
Backblaze is one of the cheapest services on this list, a fact which does not compromise its quality in anyway. We loved the fact that Backblaze allows small businesses to save all their employee information.
Yes, every PC needs its own license, however, IT can monitor deployment and backups through a central location. That means that each employee, or family member, can use their account to backup a laptop, phone and tablet.
- Continuous backup
- Military-grade encryption
- Personal encryption key
- Needs multiple licenses
- Lacks sharing features
- Mac and Windows only
Multi-system backup is a necessity for families or small groups with more than one computer. It ensures that no data is ever lost. While our top picks, CrashPlan and SOS Online Backup don’t offer true sharing, users can access any data from within the account.
Making it easy for families to share, documents, videos and images. Of course, if you’re looking for more features, feel free to take advantage of free trial periods or plans, from our other three contenders, before making any final decisions.
Thanks for reading and please do share any thoughts with us in the comments section below.