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arqBig

Online Backup

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Requires Mac OS X 10.9 ("Mavericks"), 10.8 or 10.7
More info:  Arq Release Notes   Arq Manual
Arq 3.x available here

Need Dropbox-style file sync?
Try our new product Filosync!

Arq is super-easy online backup

Just add your folders to Arq, and Arq will back them up automatically:

App Pricing

$39.99 per computer for Arq 4 (the app) Buy Now

Minor updates and bug fixes are free. Upgrade pricing is typically available after a major version upgrade, e.g. to Arq 4.

Storage Pricing

$.01/GB per month for backup to Amazon Glacier

Retrieving your files from Glacier takes 3-5 hours plus the download time.

Your initial backup will incur approximately $.05/GB in per-request fees. Subsequent backups will incur insignificant fees.

$.03/GB per month for backup to Amazon S3 (US East region)

No delay in retrieving files.

Per-request fees are typically insignificant.

Free Usage Tier: Up to 5GB free for 1 year

All recurring costs are billed to you by Amazon Web Services.

True privacy and control

Arq backs up your Mac to your own Amazon account, or SFTP server, or GreenQloud, DreamHost, Google.

Encrypt your backups with a password only you know. Haystack Software employees have no access to your data.

All encryption is done before your data leave your computer (not using Amazon's "server-side encryption").

Your backups are stored in an open, documented format. We've also delivered an open-source command-line utility called arq_restore that's hosted at github, so you can read your data anytime without depending on Haystack Software (although we're in this for the long haul, so we'll be around for a long, long time!)

Awesome support

We believe backup is a critical function, so we strive to fix critical issues in Arq quickly. If you have questions or feedback, please email us at support@haystacksoftware.com and we'll get back to you promptly. We strive to answer all emails within 1 business day.

Accuracy

Arq restores all your data and metadata correctly, unlike some other online backup offerings. Backup Bouncer is a test suite independently developed by Nathaniel Gray to verify the accuracy of backup products restoring Mac file data and metadata -- in his words, to "keep the ugly backup tools out of the club." We make sure Arq passes all Backup Bouncer tests.

Other Features

Wayback Machine

Arq keeps multiple "versions" of your files — a backup history. So if you discover a file was corrupted or accidentally deleted, you can go back and get it.

Arq automatically backs up every hour or every day, depending on the schedule you choose. Only the changes are uploaded for each backup, minimizing network and storage usage.

No limits

Arq backs up everything you tell it to back up:

  • It doesn't skip videos or ignore certain file types.
  • It backs up files of any size -- 4GB, 40GB, it doesn't matter.
  • It backs up your external drives and your network drives.
  • It doesn't delete backups of your external drives just because you haven't plugged them in lately.
  • It doesn't forcibly delete backups older than 4 weeks.

Perfect Complement to Time Machine

Time Machine works well and provides fast restore, but you have to remember to plug in your backup device (unless you have a Time Capsule), and it doesn't cover all scenarios:

  • theft of computer and backup device
  • backup while traveling (unless you bring your backup drive)

Arq backs up whenever/wherever there's an Internet connection.

Flexible Bandwidth Options

Arq can upload to S3 at maximum speed, or at a fixed transfer rate that you choose. Or choose automatic transfer rate to slow down uploads whenever you're using the Internet for other tasks.

The Story Behind Arq

I started thinking about Arq back in early 2009 because I wanted an easy-to-use backup program but couldn't find one that worked well. I liked Time Machine and even bought a Time Capsule so I wouldn't have to remember to plug in an external hard drive. But it still only backed up when I was at home near the Time Capsule, and if my house burned down or someone stole my computer and Time Capsule my stuff would be gone. I wanted online backup, at least for my most important documents and photos.

I tried Mozy, Carbonite and Backblaze. They all offered "unlimited" size backup for a fixed fee, but the "unlimited" service had limits. I couldn't back up a network drive, for example. I couldn't keep backups of external drives reliably -- Backblaze promised to delete backups of external drives that haven't been connected for 30 days. They were vague about durability and availability of my backups. And then there was the risk of the backup storage provider closing up shop and me losing all my backups. I'd seen that happen before (Upline, Xdrive, Omnidrive, Digital Railroad).

Amazon S3 seemed like a great place for my backup data. It's backed by the power of a large, profitable, public company. It offers clear durability and availability numbers and replication to multiple data centers. And it isn't an "unlimited" type of offering, so they don't add constraints to minimize the amount of backup data I have.

Backing up to S3 felt like real backup, but there wasn't any great software to do it.

I had been working on a project that used Amazon S3 for storage, and stored its stuff as a content-addressable storage (CAS) system, written in Java. I decided to rewrite those bits in Objective-C. Then I added logic to correctly back up all Mac-specific metadata, plus strong encryption, plus a simple but powerful Mac UI. Thus Arq was born.

It turns out lots of people were looking for something similar, and through word of mouth Arq has become very popular among Mac users. Now with the super-cheap Glacier storage option, Arq is set to grow even faster!

Screen Shots

Back up anything
Back up anything
Exclude files by name or path
Exclude files by name or path
Set S3 budget
Set maximum storage budget
Limit network impact
Limit network impact
Multiple versions
Versioned backups
Restore from other computers
Restore from your other computers

Arq on Hacker News

Hacker News comments: March 4, 2014

Recent Tweets about Arq

omichde After complete MBP crash @arqbackup recovered my digital life over night: over 200000 files and not one single failure - perfect! #thx May 18
james_allardice Finally got automated backups set up on my laptop. Went with @arqbackup and AWS Glacier in the end. May 12
djdiaz @arqbackup Your software is fantastic! May 09
wlodarczyk So nice to set up a new computer and be able to easily move cloud backups from the old machine -- no reuploads. Highly recommend @arqbackup. May 09
mledford Wow. Backing up my computers with Amazon S3 has gone from $17 a month to about $4. Love @arqbackup! May 08
wfdobie Been using @arqbackup on the recommendation of @jdrivas (with storage on @awscloud). Constant effortless backup and my monthly S3 Bill is $4 May 04
heikopanjas @arqbackup Just want to say thanks for saving my ass tonight. Brilliant tool! May 03
larrysalibra Thanks @arqbackup - just upgraded to v4. Backup/restore to sftp saved me when time machine failed. Arq == favorite Mac backup solution May 02
adders . @johncthompson Thanks for the @arqbackup recommendation. It’s bloomin’ great. Apr 30
tapajos I've been using @arqbackup for several years and always loved it. Now, they released a new version with everything that I want. #awesome Mar 03
daviddixon If your an OSX user and dont have a good external backup solution, then I really recommend @arqbackup. Invaluable for any business. Mar 03
daviddixon New version of @arqbackup released today in what looks like could be the most interesting version yet. Multiple locations and SFTP support! Mar 03
whitedonkey If you’re on a Mac and you aren’t using @arqbackup you should start now. Mar 03
journalist_tool Feine Sache: @arqbackup 4.0 laesst sich nun auch mit HiDrive von @STRATO_AG nutzen. Lesen Sie mehr unter http://t.co/Reox35RaTv Mar 03
tedserbinski Do you have a Mac? Absolutely best way to back up your mac. < $2 a month on Amazon's Glacier. @arqbackup http://t.co/l9BMvwzhKX Mar 03
Justin_Lund Look at all the ways to store data in @DreamHost DreamObjects. Now including @arqbackup http://t.co/IM9OEVN4sS Mar 03
avi4now Really impressed by the feature set of @arqbackup 4.0: http://t.co/JZBqcIXLLf and what a great post too. I love supporting independent devs! Mar 03
jpinnix Version 4 of my favorite remote backup tool @arqbackup is out. Amazing new features. Mar 03
nfarina New version of @arqbackup supports backing up to S3 objects with Glacier lifecycle. Way more awesome than it sounds. http://t.co/uhYyXuUThh Feb 04

Reviews

"a terrific addition to an already excellent tool" - TUAW

"near-perfect low-cost off-site backup solution" - Webmonkey | Wired.com

"I've read great things about Arq" - Marco Arment

"The deeper I dig, the more I wish I was a Mac user" - Steve Gibson , Security Now Episode 350

"einfach und genial die Datensicherung mit Amazon S3 über Arq" - Blog IT-Solutions

"Uploading and maintaining 50 gigabytes of data on Arq will cost about $5 a month" - New York Times

"My files get backed up to S3 using Arq" - Chris Wanstrath, GitHub co-founder

"I can vouch that it's a very effective system." - Brett Terpstra

"a better way to backup critical files online" - teratalks.com

"easiest to use, most flexible, and gives me the most control" - NoodleMac

"My favorite cloud backup tool" - Practically Efficient

"a fantastic backup utility" - AppStorm's Best Mac Software of 2010

"simple and elegant and works as expected" - Macgasm

"Arq makes it easy to retrieve your Mac's files." - Mac360

"If you’re serious about backups and like the idea (I do) of having your stuff on Amazon S3, go download Arq. It’s just great." - MacStories

"I love Dropbox for its elegance and simplicity, but actually those are exactly the qualities I like in Arq too." - AppStorm

"It’s exactly as simple as it can be, and it f***ing works perfectly." - Mason Mark

"...it kicks Jungledisk’s ass when it comes to speediness." - Snipe.Net

"powerful" - Full Creative

"I love it" - Trevor Turk

"Die technische Seite von Arq macht einen sehr sauberen und vielversprechenden Eindruck." - macfidelity

"Empfehlenswerte Mac-Datensicherung" - MacMacken

"phenomenal user experience" - OS X Attack

PhotoMinds LLC dba Haystack Software
support@haystacksoftware.com