Norton Online Backup Review: Online Cloud Backup
|Sign up for Norton Online Backup|
|Fast and transparent browser-based backup with file sharing; infrequent backup schedule|
Norton got into the online backup game when it bought SwapDrive back in June of 2008. Norton has long been the name to trust in Internet security, so online backup would seem to be a natural move for them.
Pricing and Backup
Norton Online Backup is $49.95 for a year. You get 25GB of storage that you can share among multiple PCs. Unlike most products we reviewed, Norton Online Backup runs entirely from a web-based Interface. A task-bar module keeps you apprised of the backup activity and will let you run manual backups and restores. Still, you will be shuffled off to the web-based UI for just about everything.
That UI is perfectly fine. It's simple, maybe a little too simple for some. You can set the backup frequency (monthly to daily) and the type of file (by default Email and Videos are not included). You can decide when you'd like the backup to run, but it's a bit like scheduling the cable guy to come out: you can choose time slots, but not a particular time. When the backup runs, it's a pretty quiet process. One thing lacking is an estimated time of completion, though it does show a percentage of data backed up. Also, it would be nice if you could schedule more frequent backups. The backups did seem rather speedy, however.
After backup, the files are available for restore or transfer to another machine. You can select individual files, or run a complete restore. Norton has recently added file sharing capabilities. Want to share a document or photo with a friend? Simply email them a link to the file from the web-based user interface. Users can add passwords and other control options for greater security. While there are no dedicated mobile apps yet, Norton has promised Android and iPhone apps during the first half of 2010.
In regard to HIPAA compliance: Online backup services cannot legally state that they are officially HIPAA compliant. However, Norton contains all of the security features to protect data that is transmitted to and from their servers. Norton follows strict guidelines to meet factors that go into HIPAA compliance. If you want to know what HIPAA is, please visit our FAQ page.
Norton is a tad more expensive than most of the other fixed and unlimited storage solutions we reviewed. It's solid, but nothing special on its own, and at $49.95 we'd have a hard time recommending it above cheaper, higher capacity services with more features. Try it for yourself, for free! Get the 30-day free trial without entering any credit card information.
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