Two of the best-known online backup services for Mac - CrashPlan and Mozy - have announced changes in their offerings for business users. In Mozy's case, however, the change also affects users of its consumer-level service.
CrashPlan: Pro and PRO Changes -- I received a puzzling email message from CrashPlan about a change in pricing of the CrashPlan PRO client and support costs. It was puzzling because the product being described was not what I'd always known as CrashPlan Pro, but rather what I thought was called CrashPlan PROserver. On further investigation, I discovered that I'd missed hearing about a bit of rebranding. To clear things up:
- The software previously known as CrashPlan Pro is now called CrashPlan+. Its pricing ($59.99) and features are unchanged for now. CrashPlan+ is the more-powerful version of the standard ($24.99) CrashPlan software, and because CrashPlan+ has valuable features like the capability to store multiple versions of files and continuous background operation, it's the version I prefer.
- The software previously known as CrashPlan PROserver is now called CrashPlan PRO. Designed for businesses with 10 or more computers, it lets you back up computers either to a local server or CrashPlan's hosted servers; it also offers advanced centralized administration features. CrashPlan PRO pricing starts at $69.99 per seat. The server software is free, while the CrashPlan PRO Support Service costs $12.60 per seat per year.
It's the second of these, CrashPlan PRO, whose pricing will be changing in 2009. Although the single-unit cost will remain the same, CrashPlan will be reducing or eliminating volume discounts (which currently run as high as 25 percent for quantities of 1,000). In addition, the Support Service for CrashPlan PRO will increase in cost by 20 percent, to $15.12 per year. However, customers can purchase CrashPlan PRO licenses or support (even multi-year support) at current prices through the end of 2008.
MozyPro: No More Pro Features for Home Users -- Meanwhile, users of EMC's MozyHome service also received an interesting email message informing them of upcoming changes. As of Wednesday, 10-Dec-08, MozyHome will no longer support backing up network volumes, and will no longer run on Mac OS X Server. Users wanting either of those capabilities must upgrade to MozyPro, the company's backup service for businesses (see "EMC Releases MozyPro Backup for Business," 2008-10-08). The email notes that current users can disable the program's automatic upgrade feature before the switchover date to continue using the current version (which does support Mac OS X Server and backing up network volumes), but says this should be considered only a temporary measure.
Unfortunately for MozyHome users who want either of these two newly removed features, MozyPro comes at a significant premium. In contrast to MozyHome's attractive pricing of $4.95 per month to back up unlimited data from a single computer, MozyPro costs $3.95 per computer for a license ($6.95 for servers) plus $0.50 per month per gigabyte of storage. So a person backing up, say, 50 GB of data would pay $4.95 per month with MozyHome but $25 per month with MozyPro.