Two cloud storage providers—two rivals—and one customer (that’s you). The tale of CrashPlan vs Mozy begins here on Cloudwards.net, where we compare their services, ease of use, security, reliability, and features and finally issue a verdict on which one’s better. Ready to join us? Jump in after the break.
Which Service to Use?
Figuring out the best service for you can be a hassle—there’s no denying that fact. Backup services hold all your data and a good chunk of your money in their hands for a rather long period of time. Which is why a simple comparison chart simply does not tell the whole story.
For this reason, we stand here upon the threshold of a blow-by-blow comparison between CrashPlan and Mozy. But before we delve in, there’s a small disclaimer that needs to be made.
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Despite our best efforts to objectively compare the two companies, the final result may not be the right choice for everyone, since people have different needs, budgets, and goals. What we’re here to do is try and figure out which of these two companies is the more able to fulfill such varied needs with the best range of services and tools.
But still, ultimately the “loser” just might be the right one for you. Of course, if neither company is to your taste, feel free to check out Cloudwards.net’s other comparison articles:
- Egnyte vs Box
- Mega vs Dropbox
- Dropbox vs Box
- Dropbox vs Google Drive
- Crashplan vs Backblaze
- Carbonite vs Crashplan
- Cloudally vs Backupify
- Sugarsync vs Dropbox
For a full-blown overview of the best cloud storage services, check out the revamped version of our battle royale comparison article:
Well, now that the disclaimers and options have been dealt with, let’s move on to introducing our two fighters.
CrashPlan: A Short History
CrashPlan is a product of Code42, a company founded by Brian Bispala, Mitch Coopet, and Matthew Dornquast. Code42 started out as an IT consulting firm way back in the dark ages of 2001. Fast forward to 2007, and the company had garnered plenty of money, power, fame and expertise behind it, which inspired them to make a Facebook killer application which would work on desktops.
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Unfortunately, that dream fell through.
But every cloud has a silver lining, and the online backup portion of the application was preserved, worked on, and eventually released as CrashPlan in 2007.Since then, the company has never looked back, adding new services and posting higher profits every year.
Mozy: A Short History
Mozy was around before CrashPlan, but it’s younger than Code42 itself. A spin-off made by Berkeley Data Systems in 2005, Mozy and its parent company were both bought off by cloud and networking giant EMC, which now wholly owns Mozy and has worked tirelessly to bring its subsidiary’s products up to top industry standards.
Mozy currently operates out of two headquarters, with the main building in Seattle and most employees working in Pleasant Grove, Utah.
Well, now that we know the origin stories of our two online backup companies out there, the time to pit them in a battle against each other has arrived. Let’s begin.
Round 1: Ease of Use
Setting up and using any backup service should be a smooth and frustration-free experience. This is why ease of use is paramount when checking out any backup company. We review two main facets—sign-up and backup—of both CrashPlan and Mozy here.
How easy is it to sign up and pay for the backup service that both providers offer, and how easy is it to actually use their backup service? Let’s see.
CrashPlan offers a 30-day free trial and unlimited backup. The entire process of sign-up is included within the free app, so all you have to do is download the free CrashPlan app onto your desktop and go through the setup wizard. The app is available for Windows (32 and 64 bit), Mac OSX, and Linux.
The system requirements are pretty basic for all operating systems:
- 1GHz processor
- 1GB of RAM
- 250MB of HDD space
Most netbooks and lower-end PCs are able to handle CrashPlan without any problems. Unless users want to place their CrashPlan application in a unique folder, there’s no reason to press anything but Next on the installer wizard. No spyware or bloatware is sneaked in.
The CrashPlan app is very fast, efficient, and easy on the system, and it provides plenty of well-explained, easy-to-follow options. Now, while the app does make it easy to reach and adjust all the nuts and bolts, nothing is really difficult to understand. Even the Advanced Settings option is really child’s play.
Easy to use, free, and wholly self-contained, CrashPlan’s sign-up process is one of its features that we love.
When it came to Mozy’s ease of use, we hit a brick wall because its free desktop app was well hidden. We also had to sign up on the website, which had no password strength indicator and asked for my location and zip code. The options to select Mozy Home or Mozy Business were present at sign-up, along with an exhaustive list of the different versions of Windows and Mac supported.
Basically, XP to Windows 8 are covered, and Mac has its back covered from Tiger to Maverick (no love for Yosemite?). There is Linux support on Mozy, but it’s very sketchy.
At least Mozy provides the option to pay upfront for two years, one year, and monthly. But seriously, a free-trial-period app prominently displayed on the homepage would go a long way in a short amount of time. Don’t try and fool the lazy into trying your service without experiencing it firsthand for free. Mozy also offers only 2GB of free space to use as backup.
To make matters worse, my password wasn’t recognized after a second login attempt, despite its being saved in my Keychain and double-checked that I had entered it correctly. Mozy better have something amazing up its sleeve in the upcoming sections because when it comes to ease-of-use, Crashplan decimates Mozy with almost no effort whatsoever.
Winner: CrashPlan (by a landslide)
Round 2: Reliability
An easy-to-use system is all well and good, but if your backup provider cannot reliably backup or restore files, it’s honestly not worth much. Kind of like how a car that can’t drive from point A to point B is pretty much assigned the status of junkyard decoration item.
CrashPlan firstly offers unlimited storage for all files and does backup pretty fast. Of course, the reliability of absolutely any online backup provider depends very heavily on how fast and steady your own Internet connection is. Considering my speeds, CrashPlan uploaded and synced my folders relatively quick, though it threatened to take more than 40 days to upload my entire 787GB of data.
But I managed to get around 5 GB uploaded within about 3 hours, and restored as well with no issues. I also managed to restore my test files onto a friend’s computer. Unfortunately, later on, I experienced slower uploads and restores. I checked with customer support and learned that CrashPlan was undergoing maintenance.
Overall, CrashPlan was satisfactory, considering my speeds and file sizes.
It took a day, a solid 12 hours, to upload 5 GB. And the restore greeted me with two corrupted files. The next test (it’s always good to double-check) performed a bit better, but it still took 6–7 hours for a 3 GB folder. There were no issues on restore.
Honestly, I believe the corrupt files in the initial test were a fluke, but the overall process of uploading and restoring data took a lot longer on Mozy, on the same connection. Fluke or not, I still experienced unreliable restoration on Mozy.
And since Mozy has no file sharing features, I couldn’t restore files onto my friend’s computer, which runs on Linux. So if your computer or HDD dies, there’s no restoring of files until a new one is purchased.
Overall, the competition is a lot closer here than in our previous round, but CrashPlan still snatches this victory away.
Round 3: Speed
This section pretty strongly ties in with the previous one and is the most crucial aspect of any good backup service: How quickly does it save and give back files? We’re about to find out who the real Speedy Gonzales is when it comes to CrashPlan vs Mozy.
A 10 GB file of mixed content was used to test the limits of both providers. Follow the chronicles below of how they both fared in this test.
CrashPlan performed pretty fast; I was impressed. The 10 GB file was secured and gone within about 8 hours. It took around 5 hours or so to get it back. Again, this will greatly vary depending on your own net speeds.
One of our staff members with a much faster Internet connection did the same exact test and managed to upload the 10 GB file within 3 hours and restore it in under 2 hours.
CrashPlan does not impose bandwidth, file size, or speed restrictions of any sort, and it shows. Your only downside is your own ISP and connection.
I honestly gave up after waiting for a whole day. Then I reduced it to 5 GB, and gave up once again after 8 hours. I talked to customer support, and it turns out, just like CrashPlan, Mozy has no speed, bandwidth, or file size restrictions in place. Then why the speed disparity? It’s like a rabbit on steroids vs an injured tortoise.
Well, after a bit of digging, I found my speed problem may have been due to how Mozy optimizes its servers. If there are a lot of people uploading at the same time, bunched on a single server, the bandwidth starts cutting downwards. Making matters worse was customer support’s suggestion to upgrade to a still more expensive plan to improve speeds. Really, Mozy?
Winner: CrashPlan (It’s like Usain Bolt against an old man with no sense of direction.)
Looking for a different provider? Here is a Carbonite offer code.
Round 4: Features
Okay, Mozy has been losing pretty badly now. It has just this and one more section to do something for itself. Let’s see if Mozy has the needed features to make it a relevant competitor to CrashPlan. But since the speed and reliability sections have both been lost, it’s gonna be an uphill battle from here on out.
CrashPlan has a lot of unique features. Standouts include its very generous tri-way backup system, which allows a user to use cloud storage based backup, a friend’s computer and the local HDD all at once. You can even back up to your friend’s external HDD, so if there’s a total computer crash or loss, you can use a friend’s computer/HDD for data recovery.
The free CrashPlan mobile app allows you to download any and all of your files (exactly as they) are onto a smartphone. It’s available for iOS, Android, and Windows Phone. Versioning and file retention are a huge blessing for people who delete files and then regret doing so (like me), and it’s pretty generous how far back the company is willing to retain files. Sticking to this theme, CrashPlan keeps deleted files forever…wow.
And that’s not even half of it. Anyone with data over 300 GB can request a seed backup, which basically means the company will ship you an HDD, you fill it up and send it back, and they’ll upload it.
Want that HDD back to restore files more quickly? They’ll ship it back as well. But the service is available only for people in the US, Australia, and New Zealand and for US armed forces abroad. And it’s only for initial backups, not for incremental ones.
Now let’s see what Mozy has up its sleeve.
Mozy boasts automatic cloud backup…okay, that’s really more a fundamental thing than a perk or interesting feature.
Mozy has a centralized web-based administrative console, which is actually a pretty handy feature for businesses to use when it comes to monitoring and controlling backups from various offices or by different employees.Mozy has support based in the US, though in my experience that support can be pretty lazy at times (still haven’t received my password recovery e-mail as of this writing).
Another is Mozy Sync, which keeps files across various devices up-to-date and well…synced. Mozy has iOS and Android apps, so keeping in touch and in control via smartphone or tablet is very much possible. Like CrashPlan, Mozy also seeds, although it prefers “shuttles.” However, shuttling is available only for MozyPro and MozyEnterprise customers.
Well, though Mozy and CrashPlan share a lot of features, CrashPlan has more of them and supports more platforms with easier access and usability. So the winner is…
Round 5: Security
Security is the cloud industry’s hot topic at the moment and rightfully so. No spy has the right to have a “bird’s-eye view” of your files. Even the US is seeing the error of its snoop-happy ways and is attempting to update its data retention polices. So, for your money’s worth, who has the strongest vault, CrashPlan or Mozy?
CrashPlan comes right out the gate with some pretty strong 448-bit blowfish encryption, and it keeps data encrypted from upload to transit to rest. Basically, it’s always encrypted thanks to an SSL connection during transit. Users can choose to pair the native 448-bit encryption with their own passwords or to use it with a unique key.
AES 128-bit, TLS-based communication encryption is also on board, along with LDAP and Shibboleth SSO authentication support on its servers. And CrashPlan’s data centers are fully ISO-, SOC1-, and SOC2-certified. Plus everything from software to hardware that’s security-related is entirely owned by CrashPlan, so no 3rd-party loopholes make it through. Pretty airtight security.
Thankfully, Mozy is no slouch in the security department, even if this comparison article highlights its other problems. We’ve got 448-bit blowfish encryption (which can be customized), and 256-bit AES personal encryption keys are primed and ready for action. Transit is taken care of with SSL, and they all come together to form what Mozy calls Tritanium.
So yeah, while it’s no victory, Mozy deserves a break, so let’s call this round a…
Winner: Tie (they both have very similar and pretty decent security)
Well, the bottom line is pretty obvious, isn’t it? CrashPlan won 4 out of 5 and tied in the fifth one. Mozy is simply no match for CrashPlan. But to be fair and honest, it was never meant to be.
CrashPlan is more of a consumer-oriented company, while Mozy kind of hangs around the business and enterprise scene. Mozy’s best assets and services are meant for people who run a business, and the company itself prefers to court enterprise-level customers. Simply put, Mozy and CrashPlan are not in the same league.
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But a comparison article can only skim the surface of both companies. But for my money, CrashPlan offers a much easier, faster, more reliable, and more feature-rich experience for people at home, business people might be happier using Mozy though.