Being Ripped Off
Amazon recently informed that they will withdraw from their “unlimited cloud storage for 60€/year” offer. This offer is now discontinued; instead they will soon charge 20$/year for 100 GB and 100$/year for 1 TB of cloud storage – only photos can still be stored unlimited for Amazon Prime customers. Oh well … so it’s about time to re-think my backup strategy.
I used to use ArqBackup and pushed my complete user folder to Amazon CloudDrive – admittedly not the smartest possible solution, but hey – *they* said “unlimited” … now I had to think about it once more. Backing up my whole user directory is convenient without doubt; but then on the other hand the difference between 20€ and 100€ gives reason for thought.
After looking a little bit closer I found that besides my photos there are mainly two types of files I want to back up on their cloud: My digitalised Super 8 movies featuring the younger me and my documents, most of them packed into DevonThink libraries.
Planning For Backup
After analysing my demand I reorganised my filesystem structure accordingly. The DevonThink libraries get their own directory since the app does not work well with cloud sync; all other documents go to the “documents” folder which is synced to iCloud. Movies get their own directory in “Amazon Drive” from where they are synced to Amazon CloudDrive. For Documents, DevonThink and Lightroom catalogs (excluding all objects with name matching the “.lrdata” pattern) I set up Arq to backup them to Amazon cloud. Now my demand for backup is 70 GB for Movies and 15 GB for documents, which still gives me some space to breathe.
The Hard Part
What Amazon does not tell you is the fact that their “Trash” counts against your available space. The retention period is 30 days, only after this period deleted (read: moved) objects will be really removed. Since I wanted to verify the effectiveness of my setup I had to manually delete everything in the Trash bin (~50.000 objects or ~600 GB) which is a really cumbersome procedure. Amazon lets you select 3.000 objects max which often does not work properly due to the buggy web interface. The deleting alone took a few hours yesterday … a simple “Empty Trash” button would do the trick much smarter, Amazon!
Burning the Bridges
just a few minutes before writing this post I cut all the ropes to my previous internet service provider. I have always been a satisfied customer of HostEurope. Their service offering is definitely cutting edge with a fair price tag and they never left me standing in the rain. But I decided to reduce complexity and focus on the essentials. I found that running my own virtual machine on the internet becomes more of a burden over time. I did not really benefit from the advantages for quite a while. So I moved three domains to my new provider InternetWerk and terminated my previous primary domain “kister.org” – thus also indicating the beginning of something new.
I set up the new KisterBlog and as you witness I am starting to populate it; this will become the source of Kisterness over time, everything too long for Twitter and too long lasting for FaceBook will go here in future.
My new internet service provider InternetWerk is a small company, but the service quality is – at least as far as I am able to judge this early – far above expectations. They respond to support requests ultra quickly. My first request was answered within fourteen minutes on the Saturday night before Christmas! The pricing model is more than fair. They handle things really professionally and the tool kit for maintaining the web page is up to the mark. Couldn’t be happier at this point with my choice, so a big recommendation for this company! … even if people criticise them for using the WordPress-Name and -Logo on their homepage in contradiction to the WordPress Foundation Trademark Policy.
After many years of maintaining my own virtual machine in the internet for running my own and a friend’s blog I decided to move on.
Every now and then I had to move to a new virtual machine and rewrite maintenance scripts afterwards. I found that increasingly cumbersome given that I only run a blog there.
Besides that the money spent on a virtual machine and a few domains seemed not appropriate given that I rarely use the blog …
… so I checked alternative options and set up a new web site based on a specialized hoster that focuses on WordPress hosting and offers reasonable services at low fees.
After all I managed to cut costs by 80% this way. In the course of the change I even found a free FTP client wich also saves me from paying 45$ for the new major version of Transmit. It is probably worth the money if you are a heavier user than me.
Instead I opted for ForkLift, which comes for free in the App Store for me (don’t know why, to be honest) and does the job as well. In return I removed Transmit and CyberDuck in return. Clutter and complexity reduced 🙂