Online and Offline Data Backups: Which Way To Go

Data backup solutions is definitely something you must have looked into the past, if you’re one of the unlucky ones, who lost all their valuable data to a massive virus attack, fire or even theft. Data backups have really helped me countless number of times when I totally lost it with the my laptop either cos it was being excruciatingly slow or some programs refused to work as they should etc.

Some folks swear by online backup systems while others swear by offline solutions. After careful analysis, I’d have to go with both cases cos you never can tell which of the two will fail and if you don’t have a secondary disaster recovery plan, you’re doomed.

Before you make that decision of whether to go offline, online or online-offline, it’d be nice to look carefully @ a few pros and cons associated with them



  1. Cheap when backing up to CD/DVD.
  2. CD/DVD backups are immune from virus attacks. (Unfortunately external hard drives aren’t).
  3. No monthly fees unlike when using online backup services.
  4. No need for internet connectivity to regain access to your data.


  1. CD/DVDs are said to have a lifespan of 10 years give or take after which they start to possibly malfunction. That said, CD/DVDs can break easily when not handled properly.
  2. Strong reliable portable hard drives come within the price range of $70 and above. This might seem pricey to a few peeps but then consider paying $5 a month for online space and it wouldn’t look so bad after all  .



  1. You can easily share your data backups with whosoever you choose to.
  2. Your files are only a click away.
  3. Reduce carry-on load. This is for folks currently using those heavy 500GB AC powered external hard drives. Ditch them for smaller portable ones or join the bandwagon of those that save their data online.


  1. Consumes a lot of bandwidth downloading and uploading files. This will mostly affect those on limited bandwidth.
  2. If you’re strapped for cash, paying $5 a month might be just too much when you can get a good DVD for less than $1 or a good portable hard disk for a minimum of $60.
  3. Only accessible where there’s internet connectivity. What happens when you’re stranded in a remote place with unstable internet or none @ all? I always carry a copy of my PC Backup on DVD within my laptop pack.
  4. Your data ain’t safe from site crashes , hackers or virus attack.
  5. For $5, I think I’d be right to assume that some online backup servers are on shared hosting servers and once you consume too many resources, you risk been shut out for a while.
    For the best offline data backup, I highly recommend Terabytes’ Image For Windows for offline disaster recovery backup. It’s compression capacities are second to no other software that I’ve tried so far and most importantly it’s pocket friendly at $38 (Physical CD).

Next I shall be writing a short guide to backing up your computer data with Image For Windows. Do feel free to share your thoughts below with regards to offline and online data backup solutions.

All the best!

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Article written by On September 4, 2011.

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