Cloud backup provider Backblaze has launched a new business-oriented backup service called Business Groups that gives its low-cost cloud backup service enterprise manageability and administration. Backblaze does betray its non-enterprise origins, however, by offering clear pricing without hiding behind “ask us for a quote” forms; $5 per month per PC, or $50 (~£40) per year
Backblaze’s cloud backup service is something of a novelty. That $50 per year gets you unlimited cloud storage, and while other cloud backup providers have offered unlimited storage, many of them have scaled back those offerings because they don’t make anything from them. Backblaze, by contrast, maintains that it actually makes money from its service, on account of the dirt-cheap storage it designs and uses, which costs just a fraction of what services like Amazon S3 and Azure Storage do.
The company added a programmatic cloud storage service, named B2, to its backup plan in 2015. B2 offers developers substantially lower costs, albeit without geographical replication or other features of the more-expensive cloud providers. The company positions this as ideal for cheap backups or replicas of data that is primarily stored in another cloud provider.
Until now, however, Backblaze hasn’t had any good solution for corporate customers. Although they can use the same $50-per-year backup service, there hasn’t been any way for IT staff to manage or maintain this. Business Groups fills that gap. With Groups, administrators can check on the backup status of individual users, get alerts when a backup hasn’t run, and oversee who has access to use the system. Billing is unified with B2’s billing. The actual backups and restores use Backblaze’s client software for Windows and macOS.
Server and NAS backup, built on B2, is also offered from $5 per terabyte per month.
Groups doesn’t offer a tremendous wealth of options or configurability, but that’s consistent with the nature of its service; it’s designed to do one thing well—backups and restoration, whether for an individual lost PC or a fire burning down a workplace—with a minimum of fuss or inconvenience. For full restores, the company will even send you a hard disk pre-populated with your data, and as long as you send the disk back, this costs nothing.