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SpiderOak¬†provides an easy-to-use online backup and sync service with an emphasis on security – their claim is that they have “zero knowledge” of your private data.

It’s a good option if you need online backup, file sync, and extreme privacy.

Continue reading for the review, or sign up for a free account today.


  • Powerful file sync capability.
  • “Zero Knowledge” privacy policy.


  • Can be purchased only in increments of 100GB.

Overall Rating:

[starreview tpl=16]


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Key Features

SpiderOak offers an interesting combination of backup, sync, and sharing, all in one place.

Online Backup
SpiderOak performs automatic file backup. The software is available for PC, Mac, and Linux platforms.

External Drive Backup
You can backup external hard drives and flash drives. Few companies offer this features, and the ones who do, usually reserve it for premium plan subscribers.

Version History
SpiderOak keeps all the versions of your files forever. Yes, all the historical file variations are saved, even if you delete a file! Unlike other services that permanently remove any files that you delete on your computer, SpiderOak places them in a special Recycle Bin until you choose to permanently delete them.

They can pull this off because of how good they are at doing incremental backups. In other words, they only need to store the portions of historical versions which differ from the content in the latest version of a file, and they can piece it all back together for you.

File Sync
SpiderOak can sync folders the right way. It’s similar to how SugarSync does it, as opposed to Dropbox, Mozy, and MyPC Backup with their specific sync folder. SpiderOak is the only true online backup service I have seen which offers this powerful and versatile sync capability.

Private File Sharing
You can create “ShareRooms” with SpiderOak’s Easy Sharing. These offer online collaboration similar to the idea of Box (just not as advanced.) But since this feature is nonexistent in other backup solutions, it’s nice to have around for occasional use. You can create as many rooms as you want, and each comes with its own RSS feed so you can be notified of any changes to the files. And each one has a private URL and is password-protected.

Local Backups
You have the option to store a local copy of your encrypted backups on another partition or external hard drive. This means you won’t need to buy separate backup software for doing local backups.

Install and Setup Process

This takes no time at all. The software is quick to install, then you can follow the on-screen instructions.

The control panel interface isn’t my favorite design. It works alright, but it’s not as slick as Carbonite.

Backup Space and Pricing Plans

SpiderOak keeps things simple – they offer a Free account and a Plus account.

The free account comes with 2GB storage space, although on some holidays you can get a free 4GB account instead! Make sure you are following us on Twitter because we tweet out any deals we find.

SpiderOak Plus starts at $10/month for 100GB. Want more space? Get 200GB for $20/month. (And you can keep going in $10/100GB increments.)

Multiple computers? No problem. Install the software on as many computers as you want at no additional cost. This is awesome if you have many different computers but not huge amounts of data.


You can expect the typical encrypted files with transfer over a secure connection, but it doesn’t stop there. SpiderOak makes sure that no one but you can possibly access your files – not SpiderOak employees, not criminals, not even the government!

Their Zero-Knowledge guarantee means even file and folder names get encrypted, so SpiderOak employees literally know nothing about the files you backed up. At some other services, it would be possible for some company employees to at least see the names of your backed up files, but not at SpiderOak.

Just make sure you’re prepared to handle the fact that if you forget your special codes, SpiderOak can’t really do much to help.


Though Spideroak is ahead of the curve in some areas, their file restoration options are lacking.

You have to find your files from the SpiderOak website or through the software. Then the files to restore are downloaded into a specific folder on your computer.

I wish there was also a virtual drive that showed up alongside your C drive right in My Computer. Loading the software to do a restore isn’t that big of a deal, but it shows that the SpiderOak software isn’t as polished as others.

Mobile Access

SpiderOak provides both an iOS app (for your iPhone and iPad) and an Android app that will work on your various mobile devices whenever you have to access files on the move.

Final Verdict

SpiderOak is pretty cool and packed with features. It’s one of few services that provides backup, sync, and sharing without skimping on quality. If privacy is of the utmost importance to you, SpiderOak should be #1 on your list!

Test drive SpiderOak completely free by signing up for a 2GB account today.

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This is a collection of screenshots with captions!

This is a collection of screenshots with captions!

This is a collection of screenshots with captions!

Get Started With SpiderOak For Free
[starreview tpl=16]

Overall rating: 4.0 out of 5 stars
Reviewed by: Paul Ryan
Date of original review: August 10, 2012
Date last updated: December 8, 2012

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