Overall Rating 84%Very Good
Ease-of-use
80%Good
Features
100%Excellent
Plans & Pricing
70%Decent
Backup & Speed
90%Excellent
Restoration
70%Decent
Sharing & Syncing
95%Excellent
Mobile Access
85%Very Good

Livedrive Overview

I’ve watched Livedrive for close to 3 years now and I must say it’s been a rough roller coaster. From being one of the worst services ever, to continually improving it’s offering in terms of stability and speed, it’s now somewhere in the lower middle. It provides a decent service, that simply cannot wow me, despite a good array of features. User experience is horrible, accurate pricing is hard if not impossible to find on their website. How and why I signed up for it, read this Livedrive review.

Our Livedrive Review 2017

Livedrive Review 2016 | THE BEST CLOUD STORAGE WITH BACKUP?

Visit www.livedrive.com

Livedrive Review

Who is Livedrive for?

There seems to be a growing need for services that offer a combination of online backup and file synchronization. More providers put the file syncing feature on top of their backup offering, as an after thought almost, like, “wait a minute – we need to do syncing as well”. Livedrive has been offering file sync and backup from the start of their company so there is a certain track record.

I’m not a great fan of one-size-fits-all solutions. But if you don’t like to play with multiple apps and services, Livedrive could be worth a try if you’re willing to look past a couple of it’s shortcomings.

You shouldn’t even look at Livedrive if having to fiddle around with preferences and menu panes is causing you severe headaches. Because that’s what Livedrive is about.

Livedrive Review

Alternatives for Livedrive

Starts from
$ 5.99 per month
CrashPlan Review
  • Free local backups
  • Seeded backup
  • Mobile access via apps
  • Windows, Mac & Linux
  • A lot of options
  • No sharing or syncing
  • Slow backups when outside of the US
www.crashplan.com
Starts from
$ 8.69 per month
Justcloud Review
  • 1TB online backup & cloud storage
  • File sync included
  • Fast & secure storage
  • Confusing pricing scheme
  • Annoying pop-ups
www.justcloud.com
Starts from
$ 9.90 per month
Jottacloud Review
  • Servers in Norway.
  • Unlimited storage and backup.
  • Decent speeds.
  • No local encryption.
  • Slower uploads on larger files.
www.jottacloud.com

Signing up

So here I am again testing Livedrive for maybe the third or fourth time in 3 years. To my surprise it really didn’t change much despite being sold now to J2 Global’s cloud storage devision. There have been rumors of Livedrive facing legal actions because of discontent customers whose accounts were canceled due to excessive storage and bandwidth usage. So “unlimited” doesn’t seem to be so unlimited after all.

Now for this Livedrive review I wanted to try something else: I decided to sign up for the Briefcase plan which only includes the cloud file locker but doesn’t do backup. Now, Livedrive offers a 14-day free trial so I thought I had nothing to lose.

My plan was to switch to the Pro Suite plan during the trial because I obviously want to test their backup product, too. Now here comes the surprise: you can book more storage space in your trial period but if you want to upgrade your plan during trial, your account is converted automagically into a paid one. That’s a bit naughty and not very customer friendly.

So, I decided to bite the bullet and purchase the Pro Suite plan at 25$ per month. Cheers.

One thing that I noticed during sign up is that they haven’t changed their cluttered ol’ website in maybe 4 years or so. So either they don’t care or it works so darn well for them that they don’t need to change it. Other services like Crashplan or Carbonite do an overhaul maybe once per year.

Unlike Backblaze or SugarSync you have to whip out your credit card before you can start your free trial “to verify your account”.

Livedrive Review - Briefcase
Livedrive Review

I decided to bite the bullet eventually and signed up for the Pro Suite plan. Livedrive offers a money-back-guarantee after all. Let’s see if they can keep their promise. 

Livedrive Review – Pro Suite

Ease-of-use

80% – Good

Being used to very simple online backup solutions like Backblaze where it’s basically just set-it-and-forget-it Livedrive comes with a plethora of different menus and preference panes.

After installing the software for the first time – nothing happened. I wasn’t given the option to select my files for backup as I would expect. So I needed to dig into the system tray to find the Livedrive icon and hit “Manage Backups”, then I could select which files and folders I’d want to back up.

Livedrive Review – Manage Backups

If you want to check on your file transfer, Livedrive needs to open another window (the Livedrive Status window). If you want to check on the overall status of your backups there’s another window to be opened, and on and on. I’d rather see this integrated into one coherent user interface. Did I mention you need to download extra software to restore your files? Well, you do.

One the plus side, it is very easy to select random files on your operating system for backup because Livedrive is available through the context menu. You can either choose to put it in your backup or Briefcase stack for sharing and syncing.

Livedrive Review

Now, the web application is a bit better organized but looks still very old fashioned. More 2010-ish. You can organize your files and delete backups if you like or share files from your Briefcase.

Livedrive Review – Web App

Somehow Livedrive manages to make adding extras to your plan very easy, like additional storage or computers to manage. Conversely, it’s utterly hard to cancel. I can’t seem to find a cancel button in my account so I guess I need to write a support ticket for that. Browsing through their TOS tells me to do so.

Livedrive Review – How to Cancel Livedrive

Livedrive doesn’t recognize your operating system automatically when downloading their software (most services do these days), so make sure you know if you’re on Windows or Mac.

Features

100% – Excellent

Livedrive comes with a variety of features, so many it’s almost overwhelming and one starts to ask, “do I really need all of that?”. The answer is, probably not. But some things are nice to have, for example, in your Briefcase you can edit your JPG images directly, cropping, adding text, all done within the Livedrive web app.

Livedrive Review

Livedrive is also one of the few services that offers direct live streaming from the app. Though the streaming interface looks like the former RealPlayer from the early 2000’s. I doubt anybody uses this feature because it just isn’t fun.

If you signed up for either the Briefcase or Pro Suite you can share and sync your files across multiple computers. The Backup plan doesn’t include syncing as it is only good for one computer. If you want to backup your whole family’s computers you can either go for the Pro Suite (5 computers) or purchase add ons.

If you’re anything like me you also want to back up your NAS devices but finding cloud storage services that include backup/storage of NAS boxes are hard to come by. Livedrive lets you backup your NAS if you’re willing to pay for it. I’ll gladly pay the 8$ extra per month to have it included, it’s unlimited after all and I just like the extra peace of mind despite it being setup as a RAID (but RAID is not backup, as they say).

Livedrive pretty much follows industry standard of 30 day file versions (see also Backblaze) which should be plenty if you accidentally saved files and want to go back to their original state.

Data centers are located in Switzerland, at least when I uploaded my data and are protected with a fairly average 256-bit server side encryption. No local encryption is available, unfortunately.

Mac and Windows users can download native clients (no Java like Crashplan) but Linux users are losing out. You can access all of your files in the mobile app, available for Android, iOS and Windows 8 Surface.

The Windows 8 app is much more slick than anything else I’ve seen from Livedrive, so they’ve made a good effort to adapt to the new look and feel. Playback of movies and previewing images is a swift experience.

 

Plans & Pricing

70% – Decent

I do find this the more boring part of the review, but when pricing and plans become a bit more complicated like in this case it’s worth pointing out. Also, it’s pretty impossible to find out the real pricing on Livedrive’s website. The only price you get is the discounted monthly rate if you sign up for two years. 

Livedrive comes in three flavors for consumers and two for businesses and one reseller package if you decide to open your own cloud storage shop. In this review I’ll focus on the consumer plans and features.

Livedrive Backup
If you’re just looking for an unlimited online backup solution, the “Backup” plan is the way to go. It’ll backup all files and folders you select on your computer. There is no “just backup everything” button, but selecting folders is not so difficult.

Livedrive Briefcase
“Briefcase” is the cloud storage only option which comes without backup. You’ll get a 2TB syncing and cloud storage folder that allows you to share files with your peers.

Livedrive Pro Suite
The “Pro Suite” is the flagship product which integrates backup and cloud storage into one solution. What’s nice is that you’re not limited to the Livedrive app to access your files you can pick another app that allows access via FTP, sFTP or WebDav. It’s only for one user, though.

The business versions allow users to use Livedrive as a full blown collaboration suite with multi-user and computer access. You can setup an FTP server very quickly to share larger files, such as video or other media files. You can set granular permissions as to who can see/edit what files or folders.

My recommendation? If you like to give Livedrive a whirl either go for the Backup or Pro Suite plan. If you go for the backup plan pick a different file syncing service (Dropbox, SugarSync, MEGA to name a few) to supplement for the missing syncing and sharing features. Pick the Pro Suite if you more the all-in-one kinda gal or guy.

I spent a couple of emails with the support team back and forth to find out what the real pricing is. So, anybody who is wondering what they need to pay, I can save you some time and headaches. I must say, the support team responded very fast (but they better with such a simple query). I simply cannot understand how one can bury pricing info so deeply. I almost wanted to give this section as 0% rating but that wouldn’t be fair either. 

PlanPrice PlanStorageDetails
Backup
$ 8 Monthly
$ 96.00 1 Year
$ 84.00 (-13%)
$ 192.00 2 Years
$ 144.00 (-25%)
Unlimited GB

Backup only. No file syncing, or sharing. 1 computer included in standard plan. $1.50/month for additional machines.

Briefcase
$ 16 Monthly
$ 192.00 1 Year
$ 156.00 (-19%)
$ 384.00 2 Years
$ 288.00 (-25%)
2000 GB

Unlimited backup not included.

Pro Suite
$ 25 Monthly
$ 300.00 1 Year
$ 240.00 (-20%)
$ 600.00 2 Years
$ 456.00 (-24%)
Unlimited GB

5TB Briefcase storage.
5 computers included.
$8/month per 1TB for additional Briefcase space. $1.50/month for additional backup computers.
$8/month for NAS drive.

Business Express
$ 50 Monthly
$ 600.00 1 Year
$ 492.00 (-18%)
$ 1,200.00 2 Years
$ 888.00 (-26%)
2000 GB

3 users included.

Business Standard
$ 160 Monthly
$ 1,920.00 1 Year
$ 1,596.00 (-17%)
$ 3,840.00 2 Years
$ 3,000.00 (-22%)
10000 GB

10 users included. Add more users for $11.75$/month.

Reseller
$ 59.95 Monthly
$ 719.40 1 Year
$ 599.95 (-17%)
Unlimited GB

$159.95 setup fee

Backup & Speed

90% – Excellent
Livedrive Review

For me, backup is the cornerstone of any cloud storage service that offers syncing and sharing, and back up on top. I strictly follow the 3-2-1 rule of backup that we’ve covered in-depth here on Cloudwards.net before. Sometimes I tend to be even more paranoid, because I have at least two redundant cloud backup services running in the background (apart from constantly testing new services).

Before anything gets backed up you need to select your folders . As usual, I prepared my test folder of 10GB with a variety of file types, small and large (up to 6GB for a particular file). Those files are documents, presentations, movies, MP3, you name it.

Livedrive Review

First, I was a bit confused because Livedrive wouldn’t launch the file wizard immediately after installation. I needed to dig it up from the systems tray and pick the “Manage Backup” item. Selecting files comes along very easy, if you can navigate your Windows computer and find a file you can use Livedrive, too.

Files are transferred to servers in Switzerland. So if you worry about US privacy laws you may feel a bit more comfortable. But just a bit. Because Livedrive doesn’t offer local encryption. More on that in the security chapter.

Resource Hog

Unfortunately, Livedrive turned out to be quite a resource hog, dancing around between 20%-40% of resource utilization during backup and over 80% during restore. While it didn’t slow down the system much it’s much more compared to other background backup service like Crashplan or Backblaze.

Livedrive Review

On the plus side, the Livedrive software would scan your backup folders regularly and discover changes of files on the fly and almost instantly, uploading the changed portion onto their servers. Larger files seem to be pushed a lot faster than smaller files, for example, my RAW image files took at least double the time a large movie file would.

But even large files wouldn’t be transferred at a constant rate. You can see the dancing in the network monitor. While that’s not bad per se it slows down the overall process.

Livedrive Review

Outsmarting the reviewer

Initially, I wanted to test both the speed of the backup and Briefcase syncing folder to see if there is any difference. So I decided to upload the original set of test files. Livedrive is pretty smart because they have to save resources where they can, so the software detects if specific files have already been uploaded and wouldn’t upload those files again. What Livedrive does is copying the files from the backup to the Briefcase folder.

That obviously speeds up the process and makes for a good user experience.

Scheduling

Livedrive has a few scheduling options. Right from the bat it’s set to scan your system every hour. If backup folders change frequently (read: adding a constant stream of files) I would select “real time backup” to make sure file changes are detected instantly.

What’s nice is that you can monitor uploads in real time to see where Livedrive’s at in the process. There is no way to manipulate the order of files that are to be uploaded, though. Once files are up you can clean the list to see which files are remaining.

Livedrive Review – File Queue

Restoration

70% – Decent

I mentioned it before and I’ll say it again, I dislike Livedrive’s overall usability. It gets worse: to restore files I need to download a separate software (Livedrive Restore 1.6). My first try restoring the entire backup folder wasn’t successful. While I could select it, it would give me an error message that a restore cannot be performed with the current selection. So, I first tried to select a sub archive.

That seemed to work better. I was happy to see that I could restore my files to any location on my computer, but then again this is not a special feature that you wouldn’t find in other services as well. In a second attempt it would do a full restore of the parent folder, I my initial fear I was to select sub folders one-by-one was unfounded.

Unfortunately, the CPU activity shot up to almost 90% while performing the restore, so slower/older computers may have a problem with it. You cannot prioritize restores once they are in the funnel. So you need to decide which files are most important to you before starting the download.

When my restore was complete there were a couple of errors with incorrect hashes, but I could restore them on a second attempt. 

Otherwise file were restored correctly.

Livedrive Review – Restore
Livedrive Review

Sharing & Syncing

95% – Excellent

Sharing files with Livedrive is an unexpected swift experience. Working from the Briefcase Livedrive adds a short context menu that provides you with the “Web Sharing” option. Sharing can be enabled either privately, for a specific user or publicly so that anybody with a link can access the file or folder. Make sure to strongly consider this option before you do so.

Livedrive Review – File Sharing

You can disable shared folders any time from the web interface or the Livedrive app, hitting the button “Stop sharing”. I would have loved to see password protection for shared files and folders for added security.

File syncing works in a Dropbox like fashion. Download the Livedrive app onto a target computer and the contents of your Briefcase will be synced instantly to that PC or Mac. If you have selected folders to be only accessible via the web they wouldn’t take up any space on your hard drive but be shown as “Livedrive online files”. So in theory Livedrive can be used to free up some hard drive space. On Windows those folders/files would be additional greyed out so you cannot confuse them with files on your computer.

In my day-to-day experience with Livedrive syncing, it works quite reliably, though the problems with transfer speeds generally persist. Dropbox on the other hand was a bit faster, but nothing that would excite me either.

Mobile Access

85% – Very Good

Across all cloud storage providers mobile access is still not there where I want it to be. Livedrive is unfortunately no exception. In fact, the only real use I see for the Livedrive mobile app is the occasional downloading of files to your device in case an important file is left at home.

Livedrive’s mobile app doesn’t even let you preview files without first having to download them. So going through a list of picture, for example, is a pain because you cannot get a quick glance what’s behind “image_ds_3456.jpg” unless you download it.

Livedrive Review

So, at best, this is a plain file viewer that allows you to download files. I like the fact that you can send those files directly to communication apps like Whatsapp or Facebook, so sharing pictures that way is easy.

Streaming music files is not so easy. You cannot just click on an MP3 inside the app. You have to add it to a playlist first and then hit the play button. Once there playback works all right, you can skip tracks and hit pause, but that’s just about it. I would love to see the option to enable/disable streaming when no WiFi connection is available but I couldn’t find it in the options.

#randomthoughts

Livedrive offers so called “Reseller Plans” starting about $50 per month where one could create their own backup/cloud storage shop. And there are many who do. While I do appreciate more offers in the online backup space, it’s hard to tell the value of those reseller services because the only thing they can compete in is price.

Sometimes you see ridiculous offers like $1 per year for unlimited backup. My BS-radar is telling me this is too good to be true, and the downfall of many Livedrive resellers proved me right.

So be careful when signing up for new too-good-to-be-true unlimited offerings. Make a search on Cloudwards.net before you commit to anything because we’ll have you covered.

Final Verdict

I just cannot warm up to using Livedrive as my primary backup and cloud storage service. If you can see past the clunky user interface and having to use a separate software for restores and dozens of software windows to accomplish simple tasks, then it could be a good solution for you.

Now, I do like the fact of using Livedrive as an online hard drive or even being able to connect it via FTP or WebDAV. That’s certainly unique. But is it enough to warrant a recommendation? I’m not sure.

Backup and restore works well hand in hand, a few minor glitches aside. Overall I wonder why Livedrive doesn’t spend sometime revamping their UI and website, especially the web interface. It’s just not something I like to use.

In terms of speed I wasn’t impressed either. While not terribly slow it was far behind our top services, Crashplan and Backblaze. I dislike the fact how Livedrive issues their trial accounts, credit card is mandatory, and you have to remember to cancel your free trial. I still have to cancel my paid account, because I couldn’t upgrade to the Pro Suite for free. We’ll see how that goes and I make sure to add it to the review.

UPDATE: Once I canceled my account, all my files were deleted instantly and I’m yet waiting to receive my refund. So be careful, if you still have important files before you cancel. 

Alternatives for Livedrive

Starts from
$ 8.69 per month
Justcloud Review
  • 1TB online backup & cloud storage
  • File sync included
  • Fast & secure storage
  • Confusing pricing scheme
  • Annoying pop-ups
www.justcloud.com
Starts from
$ 5.00 per month
Backblaze Review
  • Really easy to use.
  • No frills. Just backup.
  • Private encryption.
  • Few features.
  • Slow restores via web interface.
www.backblaze.com
Starts from
$ 5.99 per month
CrashPlan Review
  • Free local backups
  • Seeded backup
  • Mobile access via apps
  • Windows, Mac & Linux
  • A lot of options
  • No sharing or syncing
  • Slow backups when outside of the US
www.crashplan.com

Features

Livedrive Features
www.livedrive.com
Free Storage
Free Trial14 Days
System
  • windows
  • mac
PriceStarts from $ 8.00 per month
Mobile Access
Mobile Apps
  • iPhone
  • iPad
  • Android
  • WindowsPhone
Syncronisation
Free External HD Backup
Continuous Backup
Incremental Backup
Backup Scheduling
Bare Metal Backup
Exclude File Extensions for Backup
Network Drives
Bandwidth throttling
Web Access
HIPAA Compliant
File Size LimitUnlimited GB
Included Machines1
File Sharing
Multiple Accounts
Share Photo Albums
Music Streaming
Folder Collaboration
Outlook Backup
Local Encryption
Server Side Encryption256-bit
Keeps deleted files30
File Versioning30

Livedrive Review

Good cloud storage, with lots of features.

Cloud storage, backup and syncing. Advanced features for NAS backup and FTP/WebDAV access. Easy to use.
Starts from
$ 8.00 per month
Visit Livedrive

21 thoughts on “Livedrive”

  1. so far i think livedrive is great service. it does everything it says on the website. for me the most important part is cloud backup thats why I chose the backup plan for $8 per month. I’m quite computer savvy, so I cannot confirm other people’s complaints with the software being too complicated.

    I feel quite comfortable knowing that my files are backed up with livedrive.

    I would never rely on one cloud backup only because if something happens to one service and i have all my files with them that could be devastating for my business. So I also use Backblaze as a secondary unlimited online backup (as it doesnt support file sync).

  2. i’m a livedrive user for a year now and i can only second what the reviewer is saying. the service has improved a lot in the last couple months. Several times i was on the verge of leaving and signing up for another unlimited services, but there was just no one that could offer so much syncing space. i own three computers (laptop, and two desktops) I’m a 3d artist so i need a lot of space because of my renders that take up gigabytes and i cant afford to lose them.
    livedrive handles large files well, but of course its easier to work with smaller files. if you dont have files larger than 2gb then livedrive is a good choice. syncing is not that fast as you might know it from dropbox but it only costs a fraction.

  3. Hope you can advise. I have 3tb of data at the moment and was trying to free my laptop from being tethered to hard drives. In the past I had considered a large DAS and a NAS device but have now seen that you can get 5tb of online storage for $200 a year.

    Options I have see are

    1. Raid drive hard wired to Laptop: Backup to second hard Raid drive or internet
    2. NAS device: backup to internet.
    3. All files via Internet

    Key criteria.
    1. Able to access my files anywhere.
    2. If NAS device fails you can always use internet. or preferably turn it off when you are out of house. only use it to share files within house.
    3. Need provider to be able to offer the option of import and export of data by sending physical drive for them to load and return. This prevents me being locked into service provider and avoid 3 months of upload/download of initial data.
    4. Need to be able to have access to files like network drive and know they are also backed up and safe

    Questions.
    1. How is Livedrive different from Amazon S3
    2. Does anybody else besides S3 offer the option of import and export of data by sending physical drive for them to load and return.
    3. Cannot see how you access files and sync to S3.

    Thanks in advance

  4. In my household, we have 2 macs (my wife’s pro and my air) that we use
    daily. I also have a Synology DS211+ set up with 2 3TB hard drives,
    giving me a storage capacity of nearly 3TB. Currently, i have both
    macs set up to use the NAS as their time machine destinations. I also
    have a bunch of music and video files on the NAS that are only on the
    NAS (not either laptop), as well as some old outlook PST files and old
    files from computers we don’t use anymore. The total space being used
    on the NAS right now is about 600GB.

    I have about 1 GB of docs on Google Drive (synced to my mac) and then
    another 9 GB of assorted docs on my mac hard drive. I’ve then got 52
    GB of photos on my mac hard drive as well.

    We also have many gigs of wedding photos and videos on DVDs that I am
    about to transfer to our NAS.

    So in the end (and after reading your review) I signed up with the Livedrive Pro Suite because it supports up to 5 computers. Unfortunately, I needed to pay extra for the NAS extension but in the end it was well worth it. Overall I feel that things are running quite smoothly with livedrive, only thing I can’t really comment on is the syncing because I have not used it yet.

  5. ######— MY REVIEW OF LIVEDRIVE —######

    I have a lot of data, in total around 5 TB, so the only cloud storage solution that I was taking into consideration was one that would give me unlimited cloud storage and backup. I had a look at Crashplan (really cheap but no sync), then I had a look at Backblaze (really cheap, too, but lacks features), the other brands like JustCloud I’ve never heard of so I did stay away.

    I remember reading about Livedrive in some article of a tech magazine. So I thought what the hell, let’s try it. I was looking for further reviews on the web an found this one. What’s interested me the most was speed because I have so much data, I really want to bring it to the cloud as fast as possible. My files are still being transferred roughly at the reported speed in this review – so I’m quite happy with that. Honestly, I can’t say anything about the support but I marked it with five stars anyway, hopefully this won’t bias this review toooooo much 😉 Anywho…looking forward to making a test restore with some files soon and taking some over to the Briefcase to sync.

    ######## THUMBS UP !! #########

  6. Hi! My name is Herbert. I have tried many online backup services in the past. First, I signed up with Mozy, but after a while they canceled their unlimited online backup offering (that was back in 2007). Then, I signed up with Carbonite online backup because back then they were the only ones that could offer unlimited online backup and they were pretty cheap. I think it was only around 60 bucks per year or something. So I signed up but unfortunately I didn’t read the fine print. They throttled my bandwidth after a couple of gigabytes making uploads terribly slow. So I needed to change again and look for different provider. That was probably in 2011.

    That was also the time when my professional career took off and I needed to travel a lot. So, I bought a laptop and I still had my PC at home. So a different need arose: I had to sync my files across those devices. I tracked down several possibilities: one thing could be using a combination of services like dropbox or sugar sync with an online backup service. But then I would have to think about where I stored what kind of data so I was looking for a solution which could provide me with the best of both worlds. That’s why I signed up for life drive a couple of months ago and I don’t want to go back. Yes, there are some glitches when it comes to file sync as reviewers have pointed out before but I didn’t expect a “perfect service” either. It was just right for my needs offering unlimited online backup plus a vast file syncing cloud storage space.

    I think livedrive is going to be useful for people who travel a lot, but also need their files for when they are at home. You can carry your backups around and still have your files synced across all devices and even access them while you are at the airport for example. I can’t tell you how much I used the file preview feature on my iPhone to look at an Excel spreadsheet or a PowerPoint presentation before meeting with a client.

    If you sign up for livedrive you should really take advantage of the savings for signing up for a year or two years, because I think if you go monthly they are too expensive and there are better and cheaper alternatives (Backblaze, Crashplan but without sync unfortunately). After all who wants to pay 25 bucks monthly for unlimited storage and file civilization if you can get for 60% off when you sign up for two years??

    So, yes, I can recommend livedirve if you are willing to accept that it is not perfect.

  7. Hi!

    I would describe myself as not very computer savvy, but I was looking for a solution to backup my computer files. I’m a secretary so I handle a lot of documents, Excel spreadsheets, Word documents etc. Fortunately, my boss let’s me work from home (sometimes) because I have to watch my grandkids. So I need access to my work related files (I do not get a company laptop or phone). I stumbled across dropbox but i heard people saying it is not for backup (as it is only storage), so I started looking for a solution that would allow me to access my backed up files from the office AND from home.

    I can’t remember how I found Livedrive but I decided to go for the Pro Suite (which is quite expensive if you pay monthly but I signed up for 2 years and I found a coupon somewhere). Sometimes livedrive wouldn’t sync my files properly which was quite annoying. For example I edited a Word document and it would take ages until the updated version was shown. Weirdly enough, this only happens with Word files if I edit Excel Spreadsheets everything syncs almost automatically. So make sure your files are being synced correctly.

    As I said I’m not very computer savvy (born in 1956) so it takes me a while to figure out things on the computer and I was quite overwhelmed with Livedrive’s software for Windows that’s why ease of use gets only 3 stars.

    For now my hard drives run smoothly but you never now and I feel a lot better knowing that I can always get my files when I need them.

  8. Here’s what you need to know about livedrive: IT SAVED MY ASS!! Just like that. I woke up my computer wasn’t working anymore, I could turn it on but nothing would happen. I brought it to an expert he said he couldn’t do anything-so I remembered that I acutally signed up with livedrive (I totally had forgotten about that).

    So in the end I could:

    + restore all my files because I had set it up to backup everything
    + even find files I didn’t know I still had like some papers I wrote in university
    + get all my files back quickly because it was FAST

    ====

    I can’t tell you much about their support. I heard some bad things on the forums but for me livedrive saved my butt. +++++THANKS++++!!!

  9. About me: not a tech person, 30 years old, not that much files.
    what was important to me: security and ease of use
    where livedrive meet my requirements: it is very easy to use (apart from the that that you need to download an extra piece of software to get to your files), and they have some sort of encryption that is supposed to be fairly secure (but I’m no expert a this).
    where livedrive didn’t meet my expectation: it slows my computer down quite a bit (it’s not one of the latest models but it’s not old either), sometimes I feel it is taking a long while before “detecting” a change of a file to back that up. That scares me a bit because what happens if my computer crashes in exactly that moment, that’s why I keep pressing “scan now” if I have an important file to backup.

  10. Hi,

    First off I’d like to give 3,5 stars for livedrive but your review system doesn’t make that possible so I gave it 4 stars. In general I can second those positive review I’ve read so far and I’ve been using Livedrive for a couple of weeks. In fact, I just ran out of trial mode and decided to go with the Backup package. I signed up for with the free trial for the pro suite but realized I didn’t need that much syncing space – it’s just an overkill. So for now I’m using sugarsync for my file sync needs.

    Why 3,5 stars? Well, first I don’t like the plan options, they made my decision very hard finding exactly what I need.. Why is there a backup and a briefcase plan? Why not combine the backup with a little bit of Briefcase, like 100GB? That would be perfect for me as I don’t need a massive 2TB or 5TB syncing space. So I grudgingly chose the backup plan because it offers unlimited backup (I have around 350GB of files to protect, so metered backup systems are not an option for me).

    Before deciding a plan I contacted support to ask if it’s possible to get a little bit of sync with the backup plan but guess what: they didn’t know and promised to get back to me, until today I’m waiting for an answer!! They only get 3 Stars in Support because they answered very fast and were quite polite, though that doesn’t help me a lot. I can’t comment on how they help you if you have technical problems, though.

    I’m happy with livedrive – for now. But I’m also considering other options. I think now that there is so much competition in the cloud storage space there might be other options soon that have a plan that better suits my needs.

  11. My experience with livedrive has been more/less ok. Contrary to other reviewers, I don’t find the software easy to use. I’m wondering what I’m missing – but how to I recover previous files version from within the software client? No idea. How can I prioritize files that I want to backup? Burried in the preference pane. So ease of use only gets three stars here.
    Performance is ok, BUT it slowed down my computer and bandwidth quite a bit. How can I limit bandwith? It should be possible but I just couldnt find it in the software. The software itself makes a good impression it runs ok but nothing fancy either. I swtiched from SugarSync because it was too expensive for me to backup my 200+GB of files.
    Didn’t need support until now but I’ve read here and there that it is not the best but they at least provide a telephone number which i like in case something is broken I feel like I can contact them and speak to a person (hopefully).
    If you’re tech averse I cannot recommend livedrive, but if you’re used to seeing backup services run or have installed and tried out the one or the other you might like it actually. I’m not quite sure if livedrive is forever, or if I move soon to a different provider, only time will show.

  12. LiveDrive leaves a LOT to be desired. Ask yourself if you feel safe with a company that doesn’t even use SSL connections for their web interface by default? Features added to the service in the last few years have been minimal at best and many don’t work as expected. Performance is absolutely horrible, just try using WebDAV or SSL-FTP.

    In my case I moved country but when I tried to get my billing changed (their prices are cheaper in Europe) they couldn’t do it, and every message I sent to their support took literally days (sometimes even weeks) to get a reply.

    There are many reports of data corruption from their users. I’ve had a few files mysteriously become unreadable or truncate to 0 bytes. That’s totally unacceptable.

    LiveDrive’s web interface hasn’t been improved for nearly 3 years now. Neither has their support site. Why do you have to set up a separate account to post tickets or messages on their forum?

    These are all examples of how they aren’t interested in progressing, being happy just to drift along and collect their fees instead of trying to improve their service.

    In short, from a superficial point of view it seems like they offer a decent service but the more you dig into them the more you will discover that this company is run by people with an absolute minimal understanding of the technology and business they require.

    Avoid them, there are much better options out there.

  13. Livedrive on the face of it seems to offer the best service, but I tried it out for a few months and had nothing but problems. It just doesn’t work. The program constantly crashes, and you can’t trust it. For example, in my case when I lost a file and went to recover it from Livedrive, it wasn’t there and I noticed that some other files of that type (not a system file, ie a file Livedrive should be backing up) weren’t being backed up.

    I went through several back and forths with tech support (who were friendly and quick to respond) and eventually the issue was flagged for the development team. Three months later the problem was still there so I quit the service. There’s no point in a back up service you can’t rely on.

    It seems for large hard drives the best way is still just to keep a local duplicate. I think this kind of service is still years off from being able to back up large amounts of data well. For smaller amounts of data backup dropbox works flawlessly and is brilliant.

  14. I was with Livedrive for years, so long in fact I am almost 6TB of backups. I have it backing up my servers and laptops. I don’t think I ever really needed to speak to them about anything.

    However about a month or so ago one of my servers started backing up a tremendous amount of data in fairness it took me about a month to figure out why my throughput stats were so high. Anyway after a fair bit of digging The Livedrive client had been backing up continually changing log files. Admittedly this could have my configuration mistake as I am pretty sure they would have change this on an update. Thinking nothing off it I fixed the problem and all was fine.

    About 2 to 3 weeks later I got a “Breach of the Live drive® Terms of Use” email and that my account closed, no help, no discussion, no attempt to resolve any issues or a desire to resolve any issues. The only thing I could get out of support is you’ve breached section 20 part b and f. Your account will be closed.

    I am writing this review not just because I am annoyed at livedrive, I’ve been a loyal customer for 4 or 5 years, but I had no idea such an issue would get me kicked off the service and anyone else should double check their configuration just in case.

    Not impressed with Live Drive Support at all.

  15. I made the same experiance as Ken. I am a customer of Livedrive now for several years. All of the sudden I get the mail, that my contract is cancelled due to breach of section 20 part A and F.
    All attempts to get in touch with somebody have failed. No explanation, no discusson or chance to fix whatever I might have done wrong.
    This behavior may be owed to the fact, that their pricing has changed since I signed up. I have several TB backed up and still pay the price they locked me in a few years back. I just think they want to get rid of all customers using a lot of their storage and not paying the new pricing.
    By the way this is not the only problem I had with them. A while back, I had to restore several files and they “lost” several of them. Never was able to recover the files. Their custome support is really below average. I am actually not terrible unhappy if they cancel my membership… If I do get my refund. They cancelled my membership TWO day after I paid for a full year in advance. I guess time will tell.

  16. They cut lots of UK users off, data lost and court action needed for refund.

    Google Livedrive issues before using

  17. Hi had livedrive for approx 4 years, and things were fine to begin with, files were backing up, I had lots of computers connected, and I was happy with my £10 a month. Then things started to go bad, after a year or two; I would try to access a file online, but it wouldn’t work, the software would give up uploading files until I updated the software, which required a computer reboot (which I rarely do) (and these updates were coming in quite often, sometimes days apart). Then failure hit, I had one of my laptops backed up, everything seemed fine, the software status was all ok, all files sync’d, etc, then the laptop melted, so I binned it, got a new one, downloaded the restore software, navigated to that backup, and started the download process, to my horror, massive chunks of data wouldn’t download, and it would error ‘file not sync’d yet’, so the software knew the files existed on the laptop as they were being indexed, but they claim the files never got sync’d, despite being running on that laptop for at least two years, how is this possible? So I figured, more fool me, trusting this company, but carried on paying hoping things would be ok, but then approx 6 months later, I get an email from them saying my account was being deleted as they found copyrighted material on my backups (my LEGALLY acquired music library), despite asking them why this was a problem, I was told that no copyrighted material was allowed to be uploaded, and their decision was final, and I had 30 days to get any files off their servers before they were deleted!

    Horrible company, I spent hundreds of pounds on their service, and the very few times i needed it, it didn’t work! Shame on them!

  18. I bought a lifetime account some years ago, via Dripbit. Suddenly my account was suspended and then it was closed. All attempts to contact Livedrive were met with – contact Dripbit. All attempts to contact Dribit we met with – all support must use the ticketing system. All support tickets are ignored, emails are ignored, live chat options, yes you’ve guessed it all ignored.

    Referring all this back to Livedrive and theysay, yes you’ve guessed it again – You must contact Dripbit!

    You couldn’t make it up. The worst quailtiy of service in the world. AVOID bothe LIVEDRIVE and DRIPBIT!

  19. Livedrive was a waste of time and money for me. I dutifully uploaded my files but on the few occasions I needed to restore a file from Livedrive it wasn’t there. It seemed that the oldest files, the ones that would have been backed up first, the ones that Livedrive software reported were indeed backed, weren’t there. Livedrive customer service was evasive. They invariably advised I run diagnostics etc but had nothing to say about why my supposedly backed up files weren’t there. I My guess is that for people like me who got the low-price plan at $8 per month, we got what we paid for….nothing. It’s a scam.

  20. I have been a livedrive user, and now reseller almost since they started.
    I dont understand why everyone is slating there services and products. I am always reading awful reviews. Ive never wanted to post my comments up til now.
    Reading over some of the other comments…
    Ive never had an issue with restoring items, and use the briefcase feature daily, and again have been for years. Occasionally i get a sync issue between machines, which can be annoying, but is easily resolved by doing a check and repair.
    The software gets better and better too.
    The support service was almost non existent a couple of years back, but now i get a reply next day as and when i fire them a question. I know it could be better with 24 hours support.
    I help my clients with there backups and restoring files and they are happy. Especially when they have overwritten a file, and want to go back to a previous revision i have saved my clients bacon on quiet a few occasions.
    Pricing i think is very reasonable too. 4/5 for me. only thing i would like to see changed, is maybe 24/7 support and live chat.

  21. I have been using the LD Briefcase for about 3 years, and have generally been very satisfied. My gripe is that yesterday my auto-renew was rejected because i had not updated my credit card information. I got an email about this and found that I was instantly locked out of my files. There’s no question that the problem was my fault, but I would expect at least a day’s warning to fix the problem before this punishment was meted out. Given the global usage of the system, and LD’s operations on UK time, my business could easily be down for an entire working day. And then the only thing you can do is submit a “ticket” and you have no idea when someone will respond. Knowing that there will always be somebody in the sales dept. (even if no one’s available in the support dept. ) I got through the sales desk and got it straightened out in short order. But really, I think that this kind of treatment is small-minded and unprofessional

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Livedrive Review

Good cloud storage, with lots of features.

Cloud storage, backup and syncing. Advanced features for NAS backup and FTP/WebDAV access. Easy to use.
Starts from
$ 8.00 per month
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