You’ll seldom see GoodSync in a roundup of the best cloud storage providers. It has yet to go mainstream — and if it doesn’t improve its general usability, it likely never will. However, it does have some decent features, all of which we’ll explore in this GoodSync review.
- GoodSync offers block-level sync and plenty of automation for easy backups.
- Users can use GoodSync to share and sync files between different storage services.
- GoodSync’s pricing is inconsistent and ranges from affordable to far too expensive.
- The design of all GoodSync apps is dated and doesn’t offer a pleasant user experience.
It’s fair to say that GoodSync is a hybrid backup solution that’s trying its hand at cloud storage. It certainly offers some robust backup solutions for your files and data. Block-level sync and real-time data transfer make it easy to update edited files automatically, as does automatic sync.
For personal use, GoodSync has a lot to learn. Across desktop, mobile and web, its user interface is dated and unpleasant to use. Even the most experienced cloud storage user will need to spend far too much time understanding how the service works and precisely what it can do for you.
If you’re a basic cloud storage user, we suggest that you check out pCloud instead (read our pCloud review), which is far more user-friendly. It also serves as a backup solution, offering users the best of both worlds. However, business users should stick with us because maybe, just maybe, this GoodSync review will show you something that makes the service worth using.
01/26/2022 Facts checked
We have completed a fresh review of GoodSync and updated our speed times for upload and downloads. Platform versions: Desktop: v11, Mobile app: v11.8.0
GoodSync is transparent about how it uses your data, but it does collect a lot of it — which it can share for vague business purposes.
GoodSync has a range of storage plans that start at $9.99 for 10GB per year and go up to $699.99 for 8TB per year. It’s affordable on the lower plans but quickly becomes expensive on the higher plans.
You can use GoodSync to back up and sync your files either through cloud storage or a full backup to an external device.
GoodSync Review: Alternatives
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Strengths & Weaknesses
- Block-level sync
- Automated sync
- Sync files across devices
- Reliable online backup
- Offers client side encryption
- Outdated design
- Usability is complex
- Slow performance
- Subpar support
- Syncing is limited on mobile
GoodSync isn’t all bad. We were happy to see some features that make the service somewhat viable. We’ll break them down to help you understand what to expect from this cloud storage provider.
Syncing: Block-Level Sync & Sync to Third-Party Cloud Services
One of the more headline features of cloud storage and backup services is block-level sync. For those unaware, block-level sync allows you to update files in small chunks. If you edit an already backed-up file, rather than updating the entire file, it will only update the part you edited. This leads to faster performance and puts less pressure on your bandwidth.
Furthermore, GoodSync automatically detects when users modify a file. When you make an edit, it will update the backed-up file in real time without you needing to do anything.
Through the GoodSync desktop app, users can also back up and sync files on their computer to third-party cloud storage services, including Backblaze, Dropbox and Google Drive. This feature is available on both the paid and free versions, and it is a good option for those who don’t enjoy using the GoodSync storage interface (more on that later).
You can also transfer folders between two third-party cloud services. For example, through the GoodSync desktop client, you can select a folder on Dropbox and transfer files to Backblaze.
It’s a much more fluid way of transferring data between cloud storage providers and one of the better features GoodSync offers. This is a feature more commonly found in cloud management tools, like MultCloud (read our MultCloud review).
You can back up all your files and data with GoodSync. This works differently than synchronization. Rather than store everything in the cloud, you back up to an external drive, such as your own USB, SSD or another computer.
Should your computer ever get damaged, lost or stolen, and all your files are lost, you can access them via the external drive backup and restore them on your new machine.
Not only can you back up your computer’s drive, but you can also back up servers and NAS devices, making it a versatile backup service.
GoodSync can also perform automated backups without you being present at your computer. Users will need to program the backup in advance, and from there, GoodSync will perform the task automatically. Unattended backup is a useful feature for anyone who wants to back up their data at a future date.
This feature isn’t available on the free version, however, so users will need to pay for a GoodSync personal license, which costs $29.95.
GoodSync’s pricing is something of a mixed bag. Things start well, as users get 10GB of free storage space when signing up for a GoodSync account. The 100GB plan costs $19.99 per year, which works out to $1.66 per month. That’s more affordable than OneDrive (read our full OneDrive review) and Google Drive.
Things take an unexpected turn for the worse when you move up to the larger storage plans. The 2TB plan costs $199.99 per year, equating to $16.65 per month.
Compared to pCloud, which costs $8.33 per month for the same amount of storage, you’ll soon realize that GoodSync is pricing itself far too high. To put things further into perspective, for around $30 more than GoodSync’s 2TB plan, you could get 8TB of storage with MEGA (read our full MEGA review).
GoodSync for Business
If you want a business plan, GoodSync has three options, all of which serve as a backup solution rather than a traditional cloud service. Users can choose between three plans: GoodSync Workstation, GoodSync Server and GoodSync Backup Control Center. They all function on major operating systems, including Windows, macOS and Linux.
Not much separates Workstation and Server, other than the fact you can connect an unlimited number of devices to the latter and six to the former. Workstation costs $39.95 per user per year, and Server comes in at $499.95 per user per year.
GoodSync Backup Control Center allows you to control several systems from one device. Users can run multiple backup jobs and analyze their progress from their central computer. The package targets medium-to-large businesses and is useful for those who need regular backups across multiple devices at once.
Compared to Backblaze (check out our Backblaze review), another backup solution, the GoodSync Server plan is expensive and doesn’t offer more than the competition.
Overall, GoodSync’s pricing is inconsistent. In some areas, it offers good value, and in others, it prices itself above market value.
Ease of Use (65/100)
Users can access their GoodSync account through multiple devices via the desktop app, mobile application and the web browser. When it comes to design, GoodSync software is stuck in the past.
The design of all three platforms is awful. When you think of the high standards set by Icedrive (read our full Icedrive review) and the simplicity of pCloud, it’s hard to see why anyone would enjoy using GoodSync’s apps, considering the poor user interface.
Let’s start with the desktop app. The installation process is like any other piece of software you’d download to your computer. That’s the easy part. However, if you’re new to cloud storage or inexperienced with a range of cloud services, GoodSync is going to leave you feeling perplexed.
To get things rolling, you’ll need to create a “job.” That’s GoodSync’s term for syncing files or performing a backup — we’ll get into how both those functions work shortly.
Unlike most cloud services, you’re unable to drag and drop files into folders via your desktop. There’s no sync folder either, so users are left backing up their files through the archaic “create job” method GoodSync seems to prefer.
Web Browser Access
You can also access your GoodSync account via a web browser. Here you’ll only see an overview of things like your storage plan and connected devices. It’s not possible to preview files or upload files to your GoodSync cloud storage. However, you can download files that you have synced to the cloud. Again, the design is outdated and unpleasant to use.
The mobile app continues the disappointing theme of poor design and complex usability. There’s no option to manually upload files from your smartphone to the cloud. You can connect to the GoodSync server via the app. This, in turn, lets you access your smartphone files from your computer by using the web browser client. We didn’t find all our files there, and getting to them took far too long.
File Sharing & Syncing (80/100)
GoodSync allows you to sync your files across two or more devices, and share folders with other users. However, syncing files with GoodSync feels like washing a greasy pan; nobody wants to do it, and it takes forever to complete.
The only way to sync folders is from your desktop. After creating a job, you’re presented with two columns (GoodSync refers to them as “trees”).
From the left column you can select which folder you’d like to sync to the cloud. You choose where you’d like to send the folder in the right column. You can sync your files to several destinations, including GoodSync Storage, Dropbox, OneDrive and more.
All files we synced successfully landed in our requested destination folder across all cloud providers we tested. While it’s not the most straightforward syncing process, it does the job, and we can’t complain about that.
Configure a Backup Job
The backup software works very much the same as synchronization in terms of process. However, instead of backing up to cloud storage, you back up to an external source. This can be a USB stick, a hard drive or another computer. During our testing, we found backups to be reliable and work effectively.
You do have the option to share folders, but the process is cumbersome. You can’t generate a shareable link, nor can you program user permissions or set expiry dates and download limits.
To share a file, users need to log in to their account, enter the person’s email address they wish to share a file with, and then enter the file name and location. Other services make this process far easier and we’re unsure why GoodSync didn’t opt to do the same.
GoodSync’s strength in this department is clearly its ability to back up your system. For file sharing and synchronization, there’s a lot the service needs to do to improve. There’s no excuse for an outdated approach to sharing files, and it’s frustrating that GoodSync isn’t considering its user experience when developing this feature.
As with all our reviews, we uploaded a 5GB folder of mixed files on a 100 Mbps internet connection for both uploads and downloads. In terms of speed, GoodSync wasn’t quick. In fact, it’s one of the slower services we’ve used to back up files.
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If you want a quicker online backup solution, pCloud uploaded the same folder in under 10 minutes, and downloaded it in just over six. For an ultra-fast cloud storage service, turn to Dropbox. We uploaded and downloaded the same folder in under five minutes (read our full Dropbox review for more details).
There were some positives. GoodSync uses little memory and we experienced a low CPU during uploads and downloads. Upload speeds remained stable for most of the duration, only slowing down toward the end of the upload.
So, the good news is, you can perform backups in the background and move on to other tasks while you wait. The downside is that you’ll be waiting a little longer than you would with a different service.
On the security side of things, your files are protected by industry-standard AES-256 encryption, both in transit and at rest. While GoodSync doesn’t openly market itself as a zero-knowledge provider, with some work, it does offer client side encryption.
By default, GoodSync’s servers are able to decrypt files. However, with a little manual work on the user’s side, you can create a unique encryption key which only you can view.
That’s great. However, it took a dive into the manual and a conversation with support for us to learn it was possible. GoodSync should make the process easier and be more forthcoming with the information.
You can choose to set up a one-time password for each time you log in via the web browser, or you can use Google authenticator for each login. You can only access the mobile app by either entering your unique pin (which you create after you install GoodSync) or through Face I.D.
For security, everything GoodSync offers meets the minimum standards of what you need to keep your files safe and protected from third-party cyberattacks.
After signing up for an account, GoodSync automatically stores data on a Siber server located in the United States. Siber is the parent company of GoodSync and offers data storage to a range of users, including government agencies.
The data stored includes your full name, email address, home address, telephone number and payment details. Siber also collects information on the type of browser you use, your operating system and how many jobs you’ve run through GoodSync.
To paraphrase, this means Siber may share your data with third-party companies whose services it uses. For example, Mailchimp is an external company that businesses use to send mass emails to their client base. Siber (and GoodSync) uses Mailchimp to send out marketing emails to their customers. In this instance, your data will be shared with Mailchimp.
Because GoodSync’s servers are located in the United States, it means it must abide by the rules of the Five Eyes alliance. So if the authorities feel they need to see your data, GoodSync has to give it to them.
Customer Support (50/100)
If you prefer to speak to technical support, GoodSync will surely frustrate you. There’s no live chat or telephone support (unless you want to speak to sales), so you’ll need to submit a support ticket if you want to speak to a team member.
You do this through your account on the web browser. We waited 26 hours for a response, and the agent didn’t answer our query directly. We tried again to see if we experienced a bad egg and found the same evasive response from a different agent.
If you enjoy a more DIY approach to resolving an issue, there’s an extensive GoodSync manual to refer to should you need some help. There’s also an FAQ section that can help you with technical concerns.
It’s hard to rank GoodSync high in terms of support. The lackluster response on two separate occasions left a bad impression and didn’t paint a positive picture of how GoodSync wants to treat its customers.
We’re not too hot on GoodSync if you haven’t guessed already. It is not an enjoyable experience when using its file synchronization software, and it aims to be too obscure with the type of language it uses for its functions.
While the GoodSync free version offers a nice amount of storage, competitors offer more and work better if you’re looking for the best free account. Plus, the inconsistency in pricing is frustrating, again pushing us to direct you to a different service.
GoodSync has some solid features. We like that you can seamlessly transfer folders and files between different providers, and having block-level sync makes it easy to update files quickly.
However, neither of these features are unique to the service, nor are they reasons to ignore the competition. If you’re considering using GoodSync, our firm answer is: don’t. You’ll have a far better time picking any other service from our best cloud storage list.
Our recommendation for another hybrid backup solution is pCloud. For solid cloud storage options, Sync.com is our number one pick for security; for ease of use, check out Icedrive.
Are we being too harsh on GoodSync? If you already use it, what features do you like? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks for reading.