You’ve almost certainly come across many other blog posts about the importance of backups by now, so I’m going to assume you’re familiar with the 3-2-1 backup strategy. It means that you should have at least three copies of your data. Locally, you have your original data on your main computer plus a copy on a different device, e.g. an external hard drive. Additionally, you keep another copy which lives in the cloud. Remember that the external hard drive shouldn’t be connected to your computer when it’s not needed to prevent losing two copies at the same time in case your house gets struck by lightning, you experience a power spike or fall victim to Ransomware. In this post I am going to describe how I backup my computer (a MacBook Pro) as well as my Synology NAS which holds Terrabytes of irreplaceable data. To prevent data loss due to power outtakes or power spikes, I recommend using an Uninterruptible Power Supply (UPS) like this one.

### Online Backups

Some years ago I’ve used Backblaze for my online backups. They make it really simple to backup your computer. However, since their encryption is effectively useless I do not recommend them any longer.1 Also, they do not allow you to backup network shares such as a NAS. I wanted to backup my NAS too, since that’s the place where all my photos live (not on the SSD in my MacBook).

Nowadays I backup both my MacBook Pro and my NAS to Amazon Drive (formerly known as Amazon Cloud Drive). For that purpose, I use Arq to backup my MacBook Pro and Synology’s HyperBackup to backup my NAS. Arq creates a backup of your hard drive, encrypts it locally, i.e. before my data enters the cloud, and then uploads it to the cloud account of your choice.

I opted for Amazon Drive, because Amazon Drive is the only cloud provicer which offers unlimited storage space for a consumer friendly price. All its competitors, including Dropbox, Google Drive and Microsoft OneDrive, either offer 1 TB storage space at max or are unreasonably expensive in case you need more. Unlimited storage space allows me to backup my entire NAS to the cloud, not just my MacBook. My NAS currently consists of three 3 TB harddrives which are configured as SHR (Synology Hybrid RAID). Thus my NAS is able to hold 6 TB of data. Even though I have yet to fill those 6 TB of data, I like that Amazon doesn’t cap me as my data grows.

In Germany, where I live, Amazon Drive is availabe only since July 2016. Before that date I used Dropbox Pro to back up my MacBook Pro. But because Dropbox Pro allows only 1 TB I could never do a cloud backup of the entire data on my Synology and could only hope that my apartment wouldn’t burn down.2 Beside of that restriction, here are some other reasons why I stopped using Dropbox for good.

However, since internet speeds in Germany are slow anyway (especially upload speeds), you can do the math and calculate how much time it takes to actually backup such an amount as 6 TB. I can count myself lucky that I have one of the faster connections availabe in Germany, 120 Mbit/s down and 6 Mbit/s up. To initially backup 6 TB, it would take 6,291,456 MB ÷ 0.75 MB/s = 8388608 s = 97 days of my NAS running 24/7.