I’ve never been good about consistently backing up my hard drive. Hence, I have lost a fair amount of files due to crashes. Now that I work at home on my own equipment, I’ve been searching for a reliable backup solution. My first thought was to get a massive external hard drive, specifically a gigabit network attached drive that I could plug into my wireless router and access it from multiple computers. But those proved to be pretty expensive, and external hard drives (in my experience) have proved to be less reliable than internal drives.
I’m really glad I never bought anything because I recently purchased JungleDisk, a utility powered by Amazon S3. First of all, S3 is a fairly new service for storing and serving static content. JungleDisk is a simple tool that lets you access your S3 bucket from your local file system, and shows up as a network drive on your computer. Since all the files are stored on S3, the reliability factor is a googilian times better than an external hard drive. Cost is another plus. Jungle disk costs $20, one time. They also offer an upgraded service for $1/month with some added functionality. S3 has it’s own separate pricing, based on file usage and bandwidth, but it’s dirt cheap, too. I think my bill last month was like $0.44.
So, even if I ended up spending upwards of $3/month, it would still take years to equal the amount I would pay upfront for an external hard drive…which would probably fail in a couple years anyway.