Remote file backup services: Carbonite review

I’ve been using Carbonite to backup my desktop for the past few weeks. While Daniel got it going okay, we have encountered two problems:

  1. I’m on Vista, and since installing it I’ve started getting the blue screen of death. I did not want to attribute that to Carbonite, but when I went to look at some of my backup files, it happened again. Pretty sure it’s Carbonite.
  2. When I asked Daniel if we should stick with them, he said “no.” Pretty definitive. When I asked why he said, “I’ve sent two questions to their support team and have not received any replies.” Those questions were sent over three weeks ago.

It’s funny, but I bet if Daniel had got a reply to his questions, we would not have canceled our account. I will give them this, they sent me to a pretty good customer survey when I canceled. I filled it out. That was a good experience.

Can anyone recommend a remote file backup service? Preferably one that is Vista-safe?

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  • Len Pallazola

    Hi Mike,

    I apologize that you did not receive a faster response to your support request. I’d like to figure out why you didn’t receive a prompt response so that we can serve our customers better in the future. Could you please let us know when and how you submitted your request? For example, did you:

    * Submit your request online at
    * Submit your request through the Carbonite InfoCenter (Get Support page)?
    * Send an email to
    * or none of the above?

    If you’re willing to try the software again, I’d be happy to work with you directly to get things up and running properly, and to see if we can determine why you had a BSoD problem. Please let me know if you’d like my assistance.


    Len Pallazola
    Carbonite Customer Support

  • Aaron Foster

    Carbonite is terrible. I am with Daniel on this one. I have been trying to uninstall it for months now and have finally just given up. Even when you think you have it uninstalled, you continue to have the colors by all your folders and the task thing still pops up in the lower right hand corner. Do a web search and you will find out that MANY people have the same problem and cannot uninstall it. It’s a pain in the butt.

    I have since switched over to Mozy ( and they have been absolutely fantastic. I have never needed tech support so I don’t know about that, but the program itself is very easy to use and install.

    You will find that on their front page they have a comparison of their product vs. all the others and you will see for yourself that it does quite well, including a few features that Carbonite and the others don’t do.

    Check it out and I don’t think you will be disappointed.

  • Aaron Foster


    That is pretty funny. Post something negative on your blog about a company and you get almost an immediate response. E-mail the company and you never get a response. Great job.

    That is one thing our company will NEVER do……..only e-mail support. Too many companies do it these days and FAIL MISERABLY at it. Thank you to Freshbooks for keeping the phone lines open and the fantastic customer service always going.

  • QueenBee

    FolderShare now owned by Microsoft is pretty good although I’m not sure what its future holds. In addtiion to their free remove control program LogMeIn has a remote backup tool which I have tried out and is pretty good, I went with the free FolderShare though since I’m cheap.


  • Ray

    Len is attempting to rectify the alleged problem brought up by Freshbooks and in return for his kindness, he is being mocked and insulted by a Freshbooks employee.

    First of all, the manner in which Mike unceremoniously dumped on all the good people at Carbonite illustrates that although he appears to champion web based services, he is not a friend of the community. I can assure you that if Mike had sent an email to Carbonite he would have received a prompt response.

    Anyone can write a negative review and even the most prestigious company’s in the world have to endure these types of silly reviews. It amazes me that Len’s gesture of goodwill has been met with such a response. It shows the type of attitude the people at Freshbook’s truly subscribe to.

    I’m canceling my account at Freshbooks.

  • Mike McDerment

    Ray – Aaron Foster is *not* a FreshBooks employee…he is a FreshBooks user. Aaron Adams works at FreshBooks…perhaps a case of mistaken identity?

    @Len: thank you for dropping by and for being attentive – it’s great to see companies are listening and no support system is flawless. So you know on the exit interview I said I was not interested in trying the service again, but since you made an effort, I’d consider giving Carbonite another whirl. Before I do though, can you speak to the Vista issues? That’s a real stumbling block for me.

  • Dave Hyndman

    Hey Mike:

    Have you tried Mozy? Oft-cited competitor to Carbonite and in all the reviews I’ve read they seem to be coming out on top. They made big press a month or so back by signing up GE for something insane like 200k desktops (interesting that even one of the biggest and best corporate IT departments is admitting that it doesn’t have desktop backup under control). I’m using the Mac version, but it’s multi-platform. Sorry … not 100% that they’re Vista ready.


  • kt

    Ray, are you serious? Let me give you a tissue to wipe away those tears. Carbonite’s shoddy support is what prompted the post.

    I side with Mike. How lame to not get a response until you post something negative.

    Three weeks with no response? c’mon.

  • Dave Hyndman

    If I may be so bold … if you use my referral link when you sign up, I get a little Mozy love:


  • Mike McDerment

    Looks like Mozy does support Vista:

  • Aaron Foster

    Just do it Mike…….you know you want to……… won’t regret. Get Daniel to do the same thing……..heck, get the whole office doing the same thing.

    Not a FreshBook employee

  • Shashank Garg

    i prefer using online forum and discussion site to keep track my records like bookmark site and digg. perhaps could be good option, as it allows to keep backup of all online search data.

  • james

    I’ve used carbonite for about a year without any trouble. I use it to backup my mce computer which has thousands of gigital pics I’ve taken over the last 6 years. I have used then once to restore about 6Gigs of video. Can’t speak for the vista os. I’d rather not even use it for about 2 years. Heck, they just got xp up to speed!

    As for Ray… Sounds like you have an axe to grind. It also sounds like you should take a break, relax and make SURE you corectly identify who your talking to and about before you hit the “submit comment” button.

  • James

    oh, please disregard things like “gigital” and weird blackberry typos. :) I was seeing if I can spend mindless time on a blackberry to post on a blog. It worked! 😀

  • Ryan Sullivan

    Mike, I think I was the one that suggested Carbonite to you so hopefully it didn’t mess up your computer.

    I’ve got more than a few suggestions for what can help depending on what you need. Just give me some info on what you need/want and I’ll jot in a little post for everyone and I’ll email and tell you what I’ve been up to.

    On to the questions that everyone needs to answer to pick their ideal service:

    Do you need instant automatic backup like Carbonite or are periodic scheduled backups good enough?

    Do you need file versioning? If so how many is enough?

    Do you need online remote access or simply a data dump from a program to restore?

    Do you simply need file backup or complete system backup?

    Do you need to share files at all? If so do you need it to be password protected?

    Do you need to have one account work on several computers or is having a seperate service plans for each computer acceptable?

    Is this for backup only or do you want it to double as an online file access?

    Do you need explorer integration?

    Do you need quick pick options like “Desktop, Favortites, My Documents” or is a browse and select good enough?

    Do you need the ability to pick individual files or is folder level options good enough?

    Do you need to have the capability to restore to the same location or is downloading the file and browsing for the restore location acceptable?

    What are you backing up is it just files or do you need the option for SQL or exchange backup?

    Why are you doing an online backup vs offline drive backup?

    Is a private personal encryption key important or is simply having SSL encryption itself good enough?

    Anything else you need?

  • david stern

    we’ve had good luck thus far with — more expensive but it’s a pretty robust service in terms of what they can backup. don’t know if they’re VISTA-compatible…for a few local PCs we’re looking into Mozy.

  • Steven Andres

    Another vote for Mozy. I use Mozy at home on my Mac Mini and my MacBook and use MozyPro at the office on my XP machine and on my Vista machine. Never failed me once. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!

  • Mike Lavender

    Take a look at Simply Offsite ( Cross platform support – Windows (95 to Vista & 64bit), Linux, Mac (for Mac developers at the moment)… GREAT support :), reasonable pricing, 10 years in the online backup business. The only company to offer server pre-load services.

    Have you ever tried backing up 100GB over the internet? Simply Offsite will send you a USB drive to backup your data to, you send it back, it gets loaded on the servers and then you just resume your backup remotely.

  • Wes

    MozyPro the best. I’ve tested all the different online backup solutions and at the time Mozy was a new company and their client was in beta however I stuck with them and glad I did. I am now a reseller and have 10 businesses and all of them love it. Go and check them out. I get e-mail alerts every time a business doesn’t upload so their service is great.

  • Drew Loika

    I’ve been using Carbonite for about 8 months now. My experience has been a little mixed but I still recommend it to friends and family. My “regular” support questions were all well answered within a day, but my “why does the carbonite service periodically use 50% of my Core 2 Duo for 20-30 seconds at a time” didn’t receive as satisfactory of a response. However, I haven’t noticed that issue since their recent upgrade. Personally, I’m a big fan of the unlimited set-it-and-forget-it solution that Carbonite provides, and would recommend you definitely consider a second try.

    (I have NO relation to Carbonite, other than being a customer.)

  • olav

    Can’t speak for any backup company mentioned so far. You might want to look at another one:

    Enjoy and keep up the great work!


  • matt

    how about rSync?

    Free – and never lets you down.

  • Gary Gapinski

    You might want to check out some Amazon S3-based services: While I have not used them, Jungle Disk ( and Altexa ( look interesting.

    I currently use JetS3t ( which works well, but is not exactly a “backup” service.

  • John Danenbarger

    I have Carbonite running on three computers. I have asked questions and received good and reasonably responsive answers. I like the company. I find them dependable and will probably continue to use them, but I thank everyone for showing that there are competitors that I was not aware of.

  • CLG tech

    Carbonite works well for us on Windows XP. It is good to know that it does not work for some and what the potential problems are. Still, we recommend giving it a try for small offices or 1 man shops.

    Our experience with it is logged here.

  • Robert Strazzarino

    I use As a developer I have a SQL Server 2005 instance on my machine and they have a plugin that allows you to select which databases to back up as part of your backup set. Their backup tool is also very easy to use and manage.

  • gary

    I use Carbonite at home and I’ve been very happy with it. However at my work I need some way of managing multiple computers. I’ve been looking at MozyPro as it seems very nice and full featured, but ran into a real snag. It does not support files that are EFS encrypted (the built-in XP encryption). We routinely encrypt our laptop user’s files just in case they’re lost or stolen, so this is a real problem. Does anyone have another OFFSITE backup solution to recommend that’s both centrally managed and handles encrypted files?


  • William

    I just tried to ‘pay’ for carbonite after seeing it used by a friend. At first I tried the 15 free days, but it failed to let me download, so I thought I will just pay for it since it looked very usable. I was prompted with a server error and suggested trying to email support. 4 weeks ago I had also tried to find the site but the web site was not even working. I am beginning to believe I should look around at other sites unless carbonite can get their act together??? I am also very upset with software packages that do not uninstall correctly, so I am even more shy of this software solution based on the comments above. Maybe just throwing a USB drive is safer and more robust than some half baked fly by night solution?

  • michelle

    i dont like the retension also not a big fan of free or cheap seems that people forgot the internet and free were all tried already..on $5.00 its not a wortwhile biz, hard disk space cost approx 50cents a gig before operation costs, so if they have redundant servers it costs them btwn 80 cents and a dollar a gig, that being the case i would be afraid to leave my buisness with a company that is only charging a few bux… i would rather the company make money and provide a good reliable service…for not important or home files etc i guess mozy/carbonite are ok.. for buisnesss etc i would get a service that costs…in my office we use and we are very happy.

  • Heather

    Just FYI – I use mozy and have never had a problem – I actually needed a restore once and I got it within 3 hours from when I requested it.

    It also backs up my external hard drives if they are connected at the time of back up.

  • Aaron

    If anyone knows how to get Carbonite off of my computer without throwing it from the top of a 10 story building, please let me know. I have tried everything (and so have others) and cannot get rid of this POS program.

  • Chris

    To Mike, have you happened to see any remotely competitive Canadian based remote backup providers? I have some concerns about storing my data on US servers (Homeland Security, etc), but any Canadian service I’ve found has a website that looks to be circa 1995 and is very overpriced.

    One thing I’ll say about Mozy though, it allows users to use their own private encryption key, so if you choose that option even Mozy employees (or authorities) could not read your data, which is good peace of mind if using a USA server.

  • Tony

    Chris, you might want to try
    They are proving to be a bit pricey for larger backups, compared to and others, but if I recall correctly, they are based in Canada.

  • Keith Hubbard

    Carbonite is the worst!
    I was excited about the features and the unlimited storage space. Heard lots of ads on the radio. Everything was working fine until I had a registry error which crashed my XP OS on Friday evening. No problem right, I re-imaged the drive using Acronis and went to restore my remaining files using Carbonite. WRONG!!! Carbonite would not restore my important files like Quickbooks, Quicken, and Outlook.pst!!! It keep giving me an error that it could not find the selected files. I lost about 45 days worth of IMPORTANT business invoicing, billing, and email! I quickly went to the website and what do you think I found….NO TELEPHONE NUMBER FOR TECH SUPPORT!!!!! Support was only available through email which was painfully slow and worthless. They keep saying the same basic things over and over, go here, click there, …HELLO, I know which files I need and where they are located, I just need them from YOUR server. After several emails, I just gave up. I just wanted to die! Carbonite tech support was no help at all! They even gave me a link to try the newest version of Carbonite, thinking that would help, which it did not. I admit, it’s my fault for selecting a company with no phone support, DUMB! Never, ever, will I do that again! Do your own backups!!!!! I have sent in several requests for a refund, but no reply. How can you run a company without phone?

  • dave

    Found this site when looking for the answer to a carbonite question. I went to the carbonite site first – but everytime I searched the site crashed. I tried to ‘write’ them but after I completed the form it crashed after I clicked send.

    I’ll check out mozy.

  • Rob Solomon

    Mike, I found your site by typing in “carbonite blue screen” in my search engine. So I strongly suspect that Carbonite is the reason my PC is frequently giving me the BSoD. Yes, I have Vista.

    I’m wondering if you ever took Carbonite on their offer of trying to solve your problem? I’d like to know for sure if Carbonite is my problem. Other than that, I have no issues with Carbonite. Could it be that it is just not yet completely compatible with Vista?

    Any experience anyone could share with this particular issue would be appreciated. Thanks.

  • Mike McDerment

    Hey Rob, all I can say is I have taken Carbonite off my Vista machine and since I have done that I have not experienced the blue screen.

  • Rudolf Ghouliani

    Mike, are you claiming that Google’s search results are inaccurate? I verified Rob Solomon’s claims by typing in “carbonite blue screen” into google and this page was the first link on the first page of their results.

    As an SEO professional I would be interested to learn more about why you believe Google’s algorithm is incapable of producing credible results.

    I hope that the good peeps at google don’t come across your comment because if they do, they would probably buy your company out and plaster the phrase “carbonite causes blue screen in vista – VERIFIED!” on your home page.

  • Mike McDerment

    Rudolf – I think you misunderstood. I was making no inferences about Rob’s search – only my experiences with Vista blue screens AFTER I removed Carbonite (i.e. no more blue screens).

    P.S. My background is SEO and I think Google has done a wonderful job of solving a very difficult problem – no beefs with Google here :)

  • phtsmky

    I just tried to install carbonite on 2 pc’s (one laptop and one desktop). Both run Vista 32. Software is fairly identical. Both failed to activate with a generic error. I emailed them 2x’s on the issue – first about 7 hours ago. I would really like to try the service – but I can’t get it to work. I already installed Mozy on my laptop – and that is backing up quite happily. I will wait and see if I get an answer by tomorrow. If not – I won’t go. If they can’t respond quickly to an install problem – what will happen wqhen I need assistance to get my files back?

  • phtsmky

    As a follow up. I got one canned “we have received your request” message with a blurb about maybe getting back by end of next business day. I didn’t get anything. So it’s uninstalled. Sorry Carbonite – I wanted it to work – it just seems like you don’t. BTW – has the boxed version for 44.95 w/ a $30.00 rebate. Sweet. They don’t offer that if you buy direct. Now I just have to find a service that fits my needs…

  • Ryan

    Wow- thanks everyone for helping a confused shopper- becoming more aware of the issues of using the services posted above…I still have no idea what service I’m going to uses, but at least I seem educated before making the purchase

  • josh

    This problems with carbonite support are not unique. I emailed them with questions about business use, told them I was a reseller and wanted to recommend it to my clients, told them I need some specific questions answered…

    NEVER once got a response.

    So we switched to for our clients, and I’m glad we did. Much better features, and they actually reply when we contact them! Imagine that.

    Everybody: Don’t even bother with carbonite.

  • Ted Jardine

    Haven’t read through all of the posts above, but I have had absolutely no problems with Mozy and Vista (32-bit Ultimate) and I’ve been using it for five months now.

    Great product. I only have two beefs:

    1. When having a larger backup set (~40GB), when initiating a backup it takes a long time (even with Core2Duo etc.) to work its way through “Reticulating splines” etc. before finally starting. That’s not a problem unless you actually want to change the speed (you have a slider that you can adjust slow backup/fast computer to fast backup/more CPU usage. You have to wait (minutes) and only then are you able to adjust the speed. It’s a little faster to go to configuration, but still annoying time waster when you for i.e. when you want to crank up the backup speed because you’re done for the day. It would be great to just get to the config without wait. If you don’t adjust, it usually ends up more often than not with the wrong speed: you’re either having brutally slow backups occurring when you’re away from your machine, or all CPU cycles are used up when you’re trying to work.

    2. When doing a repave, you must delete your account online (with all up to date backups) before being able to start backing up again from the just repaved machine (bad Mozy bad). Then it takes a week or two to get caught up again (not Mozy’s fault: up in Canada upload rates are ridiculously expensive and slow compared to what’s available in the States) so in the meantime you don’t have a full off site backup through Mozy, and you’re using every spare CPU & bandwidth cycle to get backups back up.

    Otherwise great.

  • Aaron Adams

    I’ve got 800 kbps upstream to go with my 8 Mbps down… not great, obviously, but at least Canadian broadband isn’t as terrible as, say, mobile service.

    Also, kudos to Mozy for the awesome reference AND awesome customer service.

  • Ted Jardine

    Yes, Canadian mobile service is horrible. I’m referring to Scott Hanselman’s 15 up AND 15 down Verizon FIOS service “for just a little more” than his previous 15/2 service which was still only $50/month (

    Currently I can get 10/.5 for the same cost. I know we’re spread out, but you’d think the infrastructure is enough in place for better pricing, or rather, better performance at least in urban areas.

    Didn’t know the reticulating spline reference.

  • Aaron Adams

    Well, yeah, I can understand why FTTP services like FiOS aren’t happening ’round here anytime soon. But I do sincerely doubt the difference between your 10/.5 or my 8/.8 and his 15/15 comes entirely down to the last mile… Rogers and Bell simply don’t see the kind of competition as providers in the States, so there’s no urgent need to improve.

    15/15… that’s just not fair.

  • Marcus

    I too have had the same issue with Carbonite. I have sent 3 emails and none have been answered in over a month. How any company can let a customer fall through the cracks by not offering ANY kind of service other than email boggles my mind.

  • Bernadette

    I was just about to sign up for Carbonite, now I’m all confused. Carbonite or Mozy?

  • Paul

    I use both Carbonite and Mozy on my personal computers and like them both. I like Carbonite’s interface and style a bit more, but I don’t think you can go wrong with either. (I avoid Vista though so I can’t speak to that.)

  • Bharat Bhardwaj

    well, i have already bought the annual subscription for one of my computers from mozy & it has been at work, having backed up around 4.8 GB so far. i am considering buying the subscription for my second machine but i have been all confused!! but after having read through all the user reviews & keeping in mind the optimum money utilisation, i am sure, now i would subscribe to mozy. the reason for that is more than obvious, one would not even want to imagine depending on a company that doesn’t believe in sharing the phone numbers. what if i desperately need some support? then is the issue of no monthly plans with carbonite. they only have an annual plan, whereby, one would be bound with them in case one doesn’t really like them. & while i agree that the other services maybe better than these once, in the given price range, i think, these are the only two, please correct me if i am wrong. out of these two, i second mozy for sure.

  • Erica

    I tried a promo carbonite had and when I realised it’s not what I need I tried to uninstall it but only part of it uninstalled and the shell and whatever else there was left left a message saying denied when tried to uninstall it with windows and other uninstall programs. I ended up getting a response to my email so I figured I’d pass it on because I think I saw somebody else had the same problem here. This is what they said to get it off your computer:

    If an incomplete installation is preventing both a reinstall and an uninstall, we suggest that you follow the steps below to manually remove the Carbonite program files.

    Reboot your computer.
    Open My Computer and browse to C:Program FilesCarboniteCarbonite Backup.
    Right-click on CarboniteService.exe and rename it to CarboniteService.old.
    Right-click on CarboniteUI.exe and rename it to CarboniteUI.old.
    Right-click on CarboniteNSE.dll and rename it to CarboniteNSE.old.
    Reboot your computer again.
    Open My Computer and browse to C:Program FilesCarboniteCarbonite Backup.
    Delete CarboniteService.old, CarboniteUI.old, and CarboniteNSE.old.
    Reboot your computer one more time.
    The three reboots, while tedious, are very important in order to unload and remove the program successfully.

  • Andrew

    I have had Carbomite installed on an XP PC for 18 months or so and had no problem installing or using…
    until recently when there was a problem about the service being down, except it wasn’t immediately apparent [after all they go on about how it saves without you noticing and I am a mere novice about computers with no technical knowledge] and then it was definitely a problem for in excess of 24 hours..
    nor did I recive an e-mail about the problem or how to overcome…
    I eventually found a forum which explained the problem and how to sort it by reinstalling..except it then took me hours even to get onto the site [try it yourself if you have a few hours to waste].
    I then had to reinstall again a week later…e-mails to customer service were slowly responded to and no real explanation or apology.
    But since then things have been OK and for the most part I was satisfied with my subscription.
    Take note this was an XP machine.

    I have now networked a Vista PC and wanted to use Carbonite.
    Boy, just forget it.
    It is supposed to be easy – that’s what the Home Page tells you – but it isn’t.
    The endless e-mails to and from Customer Service – their replies requiring me to uninstall and reboot and disable Windows Defender or Norton Firewall or Spybot etc etec etc.
    Even when I finally got onto the website or to the Manage screen [in itself took days as the server seems to go on and off like a yo-yo] reinstalling was fine to a point but mostly blew out at some point or another.
    Only once in the last four days have I completed installation, Then when 73% through initial back up it stopped and that was that.
    I am at this moment trying to get back on to the Manage site to reinstall having uninstalled etc etc
    Its like a soap on TV except more annoying and ridiculous.
    Have starting ccing the VP of Customer Care – remains to see if he cares.
    Is it a problem with Carbonite conflicting with Vista? I am not having any problems with my XP machine for back-ups although I can’t get to the Manage screen on that machine most times I try.

  • Mike2

    I been a Mozy customer for almost a year. Currently doing a restore for the past couple days and my downloads do NOT exceed 95k/sec. This is unbelievable. Just so you know, I did a speadtest throgh speakeasy and dowloading at 9mb/sec. So as you can see along with many other Mozy users on the web, the restore sucks for Mozy. The live chat support doesn’t work on weekends and they pretty much didn’t help the one time i did get through. They just say “we are experience a lot of restores right now”. Come on!! For a week now 24 hours a day? Everything else on Mozy works fine. Restore Sucks. There is my 2 cents about Mozy. If they can fix the restore, it would be perfect option for off site backups.


  • F.Rahn

    Very Very dissapointed in Carbonite…I agree that it worked fine for almost a year…until I needed to restore my files…it did back up all the files it was supposed to…silent, in the backgound etc…then I purchased a new computer…my old hard drive was wiped but I wasn’t worried. I had Carbonite…long story short, I couldn’t get it to install and I lost over 15gbyts of files…Once I finally got a hold of a customer service tech rep (50mins on hold) he spent over 2hrs trying to restore my files…he was at a loss as to why and I he arranged for a refund of $49 dollars back…a pretty fair trade in return for thousands of files, family photos’ and family videos…needless to say, I’m backing up the old fasion way…with a 250gig external harddrive…this online back up is waaay to risky…another thing I found very disturbing with Carbonite is while on hold ( forever) a recording keeps coming on repeating the option to bypass being on hold by pressing the star sign and paying an addtional $19.00 for the “priority costumer support line”…it says you then get to speak to a tech rep right away with no wait and get “red carpet” treatment…shouldn’t all costumers get that treatment!!!!…nothing like being on hold til the end of time and feeling like you are being forced into paying more money to be a “priority” customer.

  • Revathy

    I use SOS Online Backup. It does cost a little more but definitely not unreasonable. The feature set remains far ahead of the rest of the online backup solutions.

  • Aviv

    I’ve seen Memopal ( recently, and was impressed by the site blurb, and some scattered reviewed on the web. Looks like good “get-your-files-anywhere” service.
    Italian company, so I wonder how service will be to the states …
    Considering now Mozy, or Memopal?

  • Susie

    I’ve been using Amazon S3 services (15 cents per GIG, unlimited space) in conjunction with Jungle Disk ($20 one time fee for the software) for over a year now. I’ve been very pleased with the service.

  • Emi

    I really wish I had read these reviews before I wasted my money on Carbonite. I purchased it in September 2007 and backed up my files on my computer, it took three days and everything was fine. However, I recently got a new computer and all I wanted to do was restore my files…which I thought would be “simple”….I was definitely wrong. After 4 days, Carbonite has frozen my computer twice and is also only 4% done restoring my files. I spent 35 minutes on hold trying to find out it what was going on. All the tech person could tell me was that the Restore Status bar probably wasn’t working properly and that my files were in fact being restored….when I was on the phone with him it was around 8% and now back to 4%?

    I just purchased an external harddrive and am backing up my files manually. Thank God I hooked up old computer back up and was able to salvage my files…I know others haven’t been as lucky. I have so many files on this computer having had it for 5 years…there is a lot to lose. I will never use an online backup system ever again…I’m just backing up my files the old fashioned way!

  • Canyonguy

    I can’t thank everyone enough for taking the time to share your experiences and write these incredibly helpful (and detailed!) accounts. I was all set to sign up with carbonite, but you have definitely convinced me that mozy is the way to go. However, just to be on the safe side, I think I’ll continue saving backups to my external drive (at least monthly, anyway); that way I’ll have both fast retrieval of backed-up files AND the security of off-site storage.

  • Kami

    I started using Carbonite a couple of months ago and was very happy with it till a few days ago. It stopped backups, Status: Backup Pending. Restore wasn’t working either. I sent messages to support, no replies. Interesting that they were very responsive before I subscribed for 2 years.

    After 4 days, it started backing up files again, and I mean *again*…. all the previously backed up files (about 22 GB). 3 days now, and it’s still doing this. All previous green dots became yellow.

    I spent 2 hours yesterday waiting on the phone for tech support before I gave up. I’m holding right now; Recording said I’m the 3rd person, how long can that be (rhetorical question).

    More messages to them, both emails and web support. No replies, not even confirmations of receipt.

    I can’t tell if they’re still there, or are all on vacation.

    Most important, I don’t know if the original files are still backed up with them.

    Thanks for listening.

  • Thomas Hammond

    I was using Carbonite until I figured out that JungleDisk was much better. JungleDisk uses Amazon S3 and doesn’t get involved in what you back up. It stays out of the way and just presents your S3 data as a mapped drive. The JungleDisk client backs up to the S3 servers and you can transfer whatever you want whenever you want, and it does automated backups too.

    It is great for power users because it is similar to doing a backup to an external backup drive. The data is actually stored at Amazon, so it has a good infrastrucuture.

    Also, it’s great for getting at your data from a remote location or from a computer in your office at work. I totally recommend JungleDisk for everyone. It kills Carbonite.


  • G Goss

    I signed up for Carbonite after hearing the endorsements from Rush and Kim Komando. It took three days to back up, but I thought it was well worth it. That was five months ago, and I would have continued to feel that way until the big blue screen three days ago. I thought, oh well, I HAVE CARBONITE, NO PROBLEM. I bought a new Dell three weeks ago and of course it came with Vista Home Premium. I changed laptops on the site, and in another five days, it finally restored my files to the new laptop. Then two weeks later after a blue screen, I had to reformat the hard drive. I told myself no problem since I HAVE CARBONITE.

    On July 30, I started “restore”. When I got up the next morning, the screen said I was on the same amount of files as I went to bed. I restarted the restore again, and when I came home from work it said it was completed. I went to look at my restored files, but they were not there. Each time that I restarted, it seemed to hang up and not have any progress.

    On Aug 1, I called the C/S number at 9 am and was advised I was #1 for tech support. At 1140 am, I was advised that they had alot of calls, and please call again sometime. I was disconnected because they were too busy. Now I am furious. I email them, and get a response that they will get back to me in 24-48 hours.

    By the way, last night I restarted the restore again, and the progress got up to 67 per cent today, but then it stopped.

    I sent an email, as if it matters, to Kim Komando and Rush telling them how useless and undependable the company was. From all that I have read, they do not really have a handle on online backup, much less any service of any kind. I think you would be better to depend on your local florist to handle your backup. At least they answer the phone and probably have the same amount of your data ready to restore as Carbonite does.


  • Peter Donald

    SOS Online Backup is horrible. They advertise and promise features and support that doesn’t work and non-existent. For instance, in their software there is an option to backup your files when you are not log on to Windows. I enable this option but the backup never works. Another feature they advertise and does not work is the LiveProtect feature. This feature is suppose to allow SOS to backup a file whenever their is changes made to this file. This feature does not work. When you call in to support you are taken on trip to Support Hell. I found out the, Sales Manager is actually the Senior Technical Support and only Support person available. When it comes to solving an simply issue, his answers is, I am not Support. I don’t know how this company can be real.

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  • http://N/A Lylah Rose Goldwater

    8/2008 I work daily with my compuer and have very important files. I have had the bad luck of lightning THREE times! I have not been able to contact CARBONITE either by phone or customer suppot. I feel RIPPED OFF! They tell you how important you (customer) are but also say you could buy into being even more important to them! This is not very professional and I am not going to renew with them and will be sure to tell ALL my friends and business folks to AVOID this business and why. Lylah Rose Goldwater

  • Dick Leatherman

    On 8 Aug 2008, I purchased a two-year automatic backup system from Carbonite. Unfortunately, I have discovered that I cannot open .doc files with long names. Prior to this time I did not have a problem and continuously opened the same .doc files that had longer names. The following is a real example of the message I receive when I try and open a long doc. file:

    The full path of the file ‘4.4 Syllabus LDSP 200 Back Page’ is too long. Please try using the ‘map network drive’ command to connect to the server to shorten the path.

    I do not have a clue what the above means or how to do it.

    I have tried using Windows Explorer to open the file and nothing happens after I double click the file (no message, no nothing). I tried sending the long file as an email attachment to myself, hoping that I could shorten the file name prior to saving the attached file, but the long file will not attach.

    Help! The files with long names that I am trying to open are critical and needed for a class that I will be teaching in two weeks.

  • marla

    I’ve been trying to get help from Carbonite for an issue and i’m thoroghly disappointed!!! The nerve of a company to tell me i can pay an additional $20 and somehow move up the help line!!!

    I have some simple questions….

    One thing i think people should be aware of:

    Carbonite does not promote itself as a “Storage” provider!!! it backs up your files and then, if you delete files from your computer, it also deletes them…Kinda defeats the purpose, in my opinion!

  • online backup

    hmm, i did not know that about carbonite. are you sure there arent settings you can change so you can store stuff on it?

  • patricia

    My computer has Vista OS. My computer crashed this weekend. and I have been trying to restore my files with Carbonite since. The phone support is a joke I have been waiting endlessly and never get thru. You must have to pay the additional $19.99 to speak to a person. The live chat is no help. The answers I received where no help. I did get a response with email and went thru the steps. I still can not access my “restored” files. They claim it is easy to restore and it is not. If the problem is with Vista okay but at least people should be made aware of it. People subscribe to the service and think they are protected but it fact they might not be.

  • Donna

    Carbonite is a disaster for support. I need to backup my Outlook data. The restore has been showing as “in progress” for the last two hours with 0% complete. The “live chat” was dead. Nada. Nothing. The phone tech support told me there would be an estimated 90 minute wait for a technician. And the web site tech support page tells me to check the preference page to see what the progress is. WHAT preference page? I told so many of my friends to get this. I’ll now tell them to bale as soon as their subscription expires if not sooner.

  • pete

    The program constantly accesses my floppy “a” drive. I emailed the company after the 2nd day after install and they never responded. After 3 weeks I emailed a request to cancel and got an auto reply saying customer service is backed up and it may take up to 3 days to get back to me. I will cancel just because of that, even if they can resolve the other issue.

  • Nic Lowe

    I’ve had similar issues with Carbonite

    Non existent support (4 requests over 3 months, never answered…)

    I am changing and asking for my money back.

  • George

    Thank goodness for this site. I am researching which online backup service to use. I now know that Carbonite is NOT for me. Apparently there is a total lack of customer support and they expect you to pay extra (to have their customer service person answer their phone), It really sounds like this is not a company to deal with if you expect even minimal service.

    Ahoy, Carbomite. Do you ever review your customer complaints to see that you are really doing a very poor job?

  • Gleb Budman

    It seems that online backup has hit a nerve here – which is excellent considering 94% of people do not regularly backup. Many good backup solutions exist, and I’m happy to see that some of the people on this discussion are using something.

    I’m going to put a quick plug in for our solution: For $5/month we provide unlimited backup with a service the US News called “The simplest way yet to backup PC files.”

    Give it a try. It takes 3 minutes to get started, asks no question to setup, and has a free trial.

    Gleb Budman
    CEO, Backblaze

  • Melissa

    Carbonite is trying to make me pay for an upgrade because I have “reached the backup limit”. There was no limit when I signed up. There is no limit stated now on the website. But the TOU say they can do whatever they want whenever they want (don’t they all?), so I guess I am screwed.

  • Dean Dryer

    I have been using Carbonite for about 2 years now. Its good until you need help, than forget about it. It took me three hours on hold to get someone to talk to and it was the same with a friend that is using their service. They have the wrost support I have ever had to deal with. When I have emailed to complain, I got no responsive. Now, it is telling me that I have reached the back up limit, but I never knew there was a limit. I am looking for a new service.

  • Henry Washburn

    A little shameless advertising…
    I work for a company called Datto Inc and we manufacture NAS devices that offer offsite backup as well. We have devices that have RAID 1 mirroring and a feature called snapshots. Snapshots are a feature of the ZFS filesystem, released by Sun, which make it possible for users to access previous versions of their files much like Apple’s Time Machine. What is exciting about the Z series devices is that they are able to do this without the need to install any special software or take any special actions.

    As far as support, we have an immediate response time to the customer, just call in or email, and we’ll be able to fix your problem remotely or over the phone.

    Each device keeps a secure copy of all data stored on it on our secure servers located on both the east and west coast of the country. In the event of a local disaster Datto can send a new device with all of their stored data and settings to the customer’s location in under 24 hours.

    We tend to be geared to small, medium, and home business users, but are available to make custom devices.

    Visit our website for more information,

    …end shameless advertising

  • Henry Washburn

    ohh…and as per Melissa’s comment about being charged for upgrades for a transmit limit breach, we don’t charge you for any transmit limit because what ever is saved on the device gets saved on our servers. We also push out updates to our devices weekly, at no charge as well.

    …I swear no more advertising

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  • Gary Wiener

    Carbonite seemed like a great solution for my remote backup needs. However, it has caused my computer to lock up multple times per day and I now have it disabled. I contacted customer service twice and they did not reply. I then emailed David Friend directly (he gives what appears to be his email address to everybody) and he had one of his people contact me.

    Their 2 or 3 emails to me have basically been pre-written responses that they have for common problems. Their fixes have not worked. I’ve emailed them 3 times since the last supposed fix and they have not replied. I am now asking them to cancel my account and refund the prorated remaining portion of my 2-year subscription. My guess is that they will not do it – heck, they probably won’t even reply.

    I’m not sure why Carbonite isn’t working for me, and if it works for you, it should be fine, but I can’t stand it and their customer service is a joke! Best of luck if you try it.

    Gary W.

  • Chris Herzig

    If you are having any problems with online backup try online storage solution. They use rsync and since it is an open source program it works well on many types of computers even old versions of Windows.

    They also have good support for their product

  • Mas Man

    I have just tried to cancel my Carbonite subscription after 4 months of trying to resolve system crashes caused my Carbonite. The support group was horrible. They kept suggesting non-sensical solutions, which I did to a point. I had to remove Carbonite from my system because I was afraid of the damage that was being done to my system. Also, when Carbonite is active, hibernating your system become problematic.This is a case of buyer beware. The customer agreement does not allow for refunds so I am stuck with the bill.

  • Brian

    Mas Man, you are not stuck. If you used VISA or Mastercard (even debit/check card) you can request a “chargeback” form from them (bank) that takes only a minute to complete. Very easy to do. In your report, just tell them your story. They will reverse the charge and wait for Carbonite’s response (of which, they probably won’t). This is commonly referred to as “your VISA and MC rights”. Applicable to anything you purchase through V and MC. AmEX is tougher, but doable. Now go get your $50 back.

  • Cindy Morus

    Wow, I wish I had found this review BEFORE I bought Carbonite. Here’s my experience:

    I found Carbonite’s restore process incredibly painful and their support even more — like a root canal.

    The original restore missed most of my files and it took several days for them to tell me that I had to reconfigure Windows Defender, Windows Firewall and Norton to accept Carbonite — no mention of that anywhere on their site.

    Their support has limited hours (only until 5 eastern) which is ridiculous when you can’t get to your data. Even after paying an additional $19.95 for “priority” support, I didn’t get the response time I would have liked and like the others, I found their responses canned and not helpful.

    While the back up process might work quite well, the proof is in the restore. Not yet ready for prime time!

  • JM

    I received incompetent email support from Carbonite, from someone who didn’t even bother reading what I actually wrote in my inquiry, but who apparently just hit on a buzz word or two and sent out a standard boilerplate response that did not at all address my actual inquiry.

    This happened repeatedly until I wrote directly to their president and their director of tech support, after which I was put in touch with a support person who did, after a fashion, help.

    In the main, I consider Carbonite tech support non-existent and regret now that I did not go with Mozy. (Actually, I tried to use both, for redundancy, but after ecountering problems, was told by Carbonite that Carbonite would not function properly if Mozy was also working simultaneously).

    A shame – I think Carbonite was a great idea very poorly executed and with among the worst tech support I have ever seen.

  • ADD

    I waited 2.5 weeks for a response from Carbonite and gave up and initiated a chat session. They emailed some instructions for further investiagating and it has now been more than 2 weeks since that email and despite nbumerous emails to support and CEO and marketing VP, NO ONE replies! over 5 weeks without a working backup. Shocking service. And they keep bloggin and PR’ing about how focussed and excellent they are. Yeah, right. If only I knew before I signed up.

  • Jason

    The program constantly accesses my floppy “a” drive.

    I’m havin this issue too. How do you fix it?

  • Chris

    Below is a response I received from Carbonite regarding floppy access issues. Note that this has been a problem with Carbonite for QUITE some time and has yet to be addressed (Along with lack of network/external drive support).

    I’ve been exploring online backup solutions and there really is no free lunch. I’ll probably stick with JungleDisk and Amazon S3 ’cause it does what I expect it to and it does it pretty fast. The cons I found with Carbonite:

    1) Slow uploads (1/4 my upstream speed)
    2) Accesses my floppy
    3) No external drive support
    4) Doesn’t backup all files even when telling it to backup a directory (It excludes various files!) by right clicking it and telling it to backup. If I tell it to specificly backup a directory it better backup everything UNDER it…

    I also tried Mozy but I didn’t like how it jammed everything into a temp file prior to uploading so I dropped it pretty fast.

    Hello and thank you for contacting Carbonite Customer Support.

    We apologize for the inconvenience. We are working with Microsoft to find out a resolution. However, if you wish you can disable your floppy drive until this issue gets resolved.

    Click start, right-click on My computer and go to Manage. Click on Device Manager and click on Floppy drive. In there you will be able to right-click on the floppy and disable it.

    Please feel free to contact us for any further assistance.

  • Heinz Dinter, PhD

    Am I setting a world record? The Carbonite Restore process restoring 1 GB has now been running 17 days (that’s 408 hours). Now Carbonite is pointing the finger of blame at others, including Comcast. The gory details are published at We are preparing a lawsuit and would like to hear from Carbonite sufferers.

  • Gary Wiener

    I uninstalled Carbonite from my system on December 3, 2008. I’ve not had a single lock up since then. 15 months of troubles and it came down to Carbonite. Wow!

    I found Carbonite’s support terrible just as others have mentioned. They did send back “form responses” as others have stated based upon key words in my emals. Many of their supposed fixes were nonsensical. I wish them the best and I hope they fix their technical support.

    I’m now using Mozy and I like the features better, especially that I can backup external drives and the option to purchases a data CD from them if I have a crash and lose all of my data, but the upload is slow. I’m working with their tech support to figure out why. Hopefully they can resolve this issue.

  • Gary Wiener

    Has anybody here ever tried for backup? It’s a bit more expensive than Carbonite or Mozy, but besides that, how does it compare?


  • Moz

    Anyone aware of IP issues related to Carbonite? I’ve got similar probs on 2 PCs at same address.

    In general the patterns are…
    – PC slowed gradually over the past 6 weeks since install, eventually leading to crashes when hibernating, shutting down, etc
    – Icon disappeared from tray
    – When loading from progs list, InfoCentre usually opens as IE error
    – Backup Centre links don’t work
    – Reinstall doesn’t work
    – Support emails are going unanswered

    I find it difficult to believe this raft of complaints can be attributed entirely to poor corporate practices, and wonder if there’s a hitherto unknown fault at play – IP blocking or some such.

  • Marc Goldberg

    Carbonite saved my butt in October in a major way. My computer crashed after several months of acting generally “funky.” The blips made me nervous because I had no backups of all the data for my dog training business. In June I signed up with Carbonite. My October crash vaporized years worth of client data, photos, and articles. It was all restored within two days once I reformatted the computer.

    My only criticism whatsoever was that Carbonite viewed my reformatted computer as a “new” computer. That meant I needed to reinstall the Carbonite program on the laptop, complete with my seriel number…which was wiped out in the crash. Dealing with customer service online was not fun.

    Finally, I paid the 20 bucks for their premium customer service so I could talk to a human being. It was annoying to have to do that, but it turned out to be well worth it. A rep walked me through every step of a complete restoration. This was a ton better than the alternative which was committing Digital Suicide.

    Last week I accidentally deleted 4 GB of files I needed. I figured that out 7 or 8 days later. But Carbonite saves deleted files for 30 days, just in case. To restore them (no help needed this time) took me one right click.

    I do not work for this company. But I can tell you I’ll be a customer for life assuming they continue to be as good as they are now.

  • Mandy M Roth

    My computer keeps going to a black screen and totally locking up on me. I’ve had carbonite for almost a month and really wished I’d have read this prior to paying for a year.

  • alan

    Vista (A.K.A ME 2)is probably the common problem

    good luck

  • Tie

    I’ve been researching Mozy and Carbonite.

    It seems Carbonite’s biggest issue is Vista.

    On other post Mozy’s biggest issue is the time it takes to restore. I believe anywhere from 18-36 hours. I don’t know if I would like to wait that long.

    Any comments on Carbonite’s restoring time?

    Also, open for any other comments.

  • Heinz Dinter, PhD

    My frustration with Carbonite is now compleat. I have documented our experience titled “Trapped In Carbonite” at my website

  • J. Horvath

    Carbonite got an “A” for every facet of their service in the beginning. They wound up with an “F” and here’s why.

    I kept getting emails from them warning me that I hadn’t had a backup in over a week. My system told me otherwise, so what should I have believed? I replied to every email and asked for help in understanding the discrepancies. Without this knowledge, how could I know if Carbonite was securing my data?

    No one ever replied to my questions. Several Carbonite “Service Reps” (and I use that term loosely) sent me robo-emails about unrelated topics. After many of these over two months, I asked that someone call me directly or send me a refund for the rest of the year. I was informed that phoning was a higher-cost service (again–they don’t know the meaning of the word), and they don’t do refunds because of their free trials.

    I refused to pay them any more money, and I went into a trial with another backup service. My one-year subscription with Carbonite was
    over in mid-December ’08, but the company continues to spam me with warnings about my unsecure data.

    Throughout my dealings with Carbonite, every one of their emails was signed, but not one of the rebots did a thing to help me.

  • desertdude

    Hmmm. Just reading this blog convinces me that Carbonite is more into xracting fees for ongoing support than supporting its customers.

    I will not be purchasing Carbonite for my company.



    My computer crashed & the tech couldn’t save anything (faulty memory).
    Not to worry I had paid CARBONITE for the first year and then was automatically billed for the 2nd year so for a $100 bucks I knew I was safe.
    What a shocker when NOTHING WORKED, nada, zip, big O.
    Then the Carbonite nightmare began.

    Carbonite not only is terrible but they are RUDE – NO CUSTOMER SERVICE unless you want to pay $20.00, – Keep you on hold for hours and hours.

    DAY 1
    Was on hold 1 hour and 40 minutes (thankfully I have a speaker phone so my ear didn’t swell). I was #4 in line that time. Another hour and 20 minutes but I made it to #2 before I was disconnected.

    Day #2
    At least 7 more calls plus the online help which is a bigger joke than their phones.
    I got a live person. Asks for my email addy and then says I do not have a contract, would I like to make the purchase now? NO WAY!

    Explained quickly in a PLEASE help a little ol’ lady (I AM) voice.
    My password didn’t work at all so this guy sent me numerous password all about 12# long………………..NOTHING, nada, zip, big O. Exhausted I quit.

    DAY #3
    Call in morning 70 minute wait on phone, live guy… Passwords again nada, zip, big O.
    DAY #3 afternoon
    After 3 calls each waiting a minimum of an hour plus I couldn’t take it any longer.

    DAY #4
    RESOLVE and determination I started in the morning and by 4pm I got another guy.
    Went through the password game again but this time he said “let me check it out”
    Shock someone that knew something. Answer ” I don’t know exactly happened but all your files are corrupt and you won’t get anything.

    4 DAYS to get “you’re wasting your time lady you are out of LUCK”!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Want my $$ back….answer you’ll have to call billing.
    WHAT the billing dept. Is on another planet and you can’t connect me?
    Carbonite has a HUNDRED BUCKS for nada, zip, big O and I have to chase it down????
    TOOOOOO angry to start trying the billing dept. On Uranus, I was sure.

    DAY 5.
    Waited so long (they must have 1 ONE phone in the joint) I got to 1st in line after 15 minutes more…… A recording giving me the hours they are open which was not now!!!!!

    Finally went to CONTACT US on Carbonite web site.
    Wrote a summery email asking how do I get my wasted money BACK!!!!

    Received an email with an apology for the inconveniences and she would help now. FINALLY something more positive.
    She wrote next day showing they refunded my credit card for $49.95.
    WAIT what about the other $49.95 from August.
    “I’ll check on that”

    THIS WAS A MONTH AGO and I still waiting for $49.95.
    Now I write and get NOTHING nada, zip, big O.

    They treat customers like crap, lie, cheat and then steal your money and you get
    NOTHING,nada, zip, big O.

  • CarrieC

    I work for a non-profit company helping many people. Late last year the building next to us caught fire and burned to the ground in less than 10 hours. We were very blessed that the fire didn’t spread to our building.

    We’ve been looking for a good backup system since then. Being a non-profit, cost is a very big factor in determining which offline service to purchase. We selected Carbonite because it was unlimited offline storage for $50 a year. It was doing fine until a couple weeks ago. We created a system where we’d have each person’s computer files (not mirroring, but data backup only) backup to one central server computer, and have Carbonite installed on that server computer only. Now we get constant errors that Carbonite backup has failed.

    I went to the Carbonite website and started “chatting” with one of their customer service reps. He said I needed to send them a log of Carbonite service by clicking on the connect to customer service option in the options portion of the Carbonite install. I did so, and received a message that it could take up to 3 days to get a response. 5 days later, we are sent a fix. When we tried the fix, it didn’t work. I have since sent them a detailed report (including screen shot proving I did exactly as their fix has stated and didn’t work), and am waiting for a reply. It’s been 2 days so far.

    In the meantime, we’re having all those files we’re trying to have backed up to Carbonite backed up to external drives that we are rotating on taking home each evening, in case of fire, theft or “act of God.”

    We’re now concerned of the ability to restore the files Carbonite is backing up, after reading the reviews listed above.

    Does anyone have any other suggestions for keeping safe the files necessary for business in case of total loss of business location (fire, flood, “act of God”, etc.)?

    Thank you.

  • Andrea

    My computer crashed 5 weeks ago. I had been using Carbonite for 10 months then, without much issues (on Vista). After reinstalling my pc the first thing I did was install Carbonite to retrieve my files. Unfortunatly the installation would not succeed, not on my pc or one of the other six computers I tried it on. To make a long story short, after e-mailing and chatting online with the supportdesk for over a month, it took an angry e-mail to Carbonite CEO David Friend to have a technician call me up the next day to resolve the problem through a remote desktop session which lasted only 10 minutes. The problem was not with my pc, but with the account on their server wich contained an error. The restoration has now been going on for more than 24 hours and seems to work fine, and I probably will continue to use Carbonite just because it’s so cheap, but I will make an extra backup locally, just to be safe.

    If you’re having troubles with Carbonite, just make sure you get to talk to a technician on the phone, forget about e-mail or the live chat on their website.

  • James Sutherland

    I’ve been both using Mozy and Carbonite on my own systems (Mac and PC) and supporting Carbonite on another for a while now, with mixed results. Carbonite on the PC seems to be fine, aside from a compatibility issue conflicting with MSI installations (just suspend Carbonite while installing and you’re fine). Restores also seem to work fine, sometimes taking a day or two, but getting there eventually.

    Mozy, on the other hand, has failed quite badly. I’ve had it forget my backed up data on several occasions, then start re-processing all the data from scratch (not actually uploading it, but re-hashing each file very very slowly) – most recently, taking two weeks so far with my 60 Gb of data on the Mac.

    Unfortunately, Carbonite was also problematic on the Mac: after completing the initial backup, it started eating CPU for prolonged periods for no apparent reason. Indeed, I stumbled across this blog post while looking for instructions on uninstalling it!

    Right now, I have one Carbonite subscription (on one Vista x64 system), three Mozy (the other Vista x64, an XP x86 and a Mac) – I won’t be renewing Mozy, and I’m thinking of switching to ZFS’s snapshot transfer for laptop backups in future.

  • Ann Kurtz

    I am FURIOUS!!!!! I wish to high heaven I had known this before I installed this on my laptop. However, I trusted that damn PC Mag referral and now I’m screwed. I have lost tons of files not to mention the dreaded blue screen appeared and now my entire pc is lost.

    If I could see the person that is in charge I would slap his face!

  • Tony French

    Well, its my turn.

    I got a BSOD on Tuesday (3/24), and in the process lost my Vista profile – that is where all of your docuements and application settings are saved.

    No problem, I will just restore them using Carbonite. I started that Tuesday night. It restored many files and ran all through the night.

    However, I have one file, my main Outlook PST file that will not restore. It attempts to do it for about an hour and then fails, the error message is completly worthless.

    So Wednesday I called customer support, they suggestted some things to try and we hung up. So, I tried their suggestions, all of them failed, and it was then Thursday.

    So, I called back on Thursday, that tech looked at the logs and told me they would escalate to enginerring.

    So, I waited all day Thursday and heard nothing back from Carbonite.

    So, on Friday, I called back. The tech said that they would escalate the issue to enginerring. I said we did that yesterday. Tech said nu uh.

    So the Tech escalted to engineering. And I waited.

    After 6 hours of no response, I called back. This tech said that it had been escalated to engineering, and I should call back next Wednesday.

    Next Wednesday?

    I expressed that the lost file was critical and I was missing appointments and needed contact info, etc, etc, etc…

    I then asked to be escalted to her supervisor. She said that it was company policy to not pass me off to anyone. Then she repeated everything that she had already told me.

    I insisted that there must be someone, her supervisor, some vice-president or even the owner of the company.

    She said it was company policy. And then she hung up the phone.

    I have written a new company policy. Our company will no longer do business with Carbonite.

    Way to loose a perfectly satisfied customer (until now).

  • johnnie

    If you are not into large corporations taking care of your backups, then try out what a company I have been using for the last 6 years. Their support is top notch.

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  • Miles Lemkin

    I have a major complaint about Carbonite. After a long wait, the only responses to several inquiries that I made were the same “canned” responses, over and over, that I can solve all problems through their on-line info. I don’t have hours to spend researching a solution that they should be happy and willing to help me with on a timely basis. I just bought a new computer, one problem came up, I called HP and the problem was resolved in minutes. This is the way customer service should work. I have uninstalled Carbonite and moved on. Needless to say, Carbonite has ignored my requests for a pro-rated refund. Buyer Beware!!

  • Matt B.

    I dumped Mozy a long time ago because it kept continually trying to backup my VMware virtual machine, even though it was excluded.

    I’ll admit I didn’t bother contacting support.

    On the other hand, Carbonite has worked well, so far; however, I’m not pleased with it eating CPU. I’m going to complain about it, but I don’t mind pausing it every-now-and-then.

  • CarboniteSuxxxxxx

    Carbonite is a joke .I had a triel for less than 3 days and it is a chaos .I don`t like the service whatsoever not to mention the customer service

    Get away from these guys …

  • Lauren

    Beware of Carbonite. Backup’s great but don’t try to get your files back onto your computer if anything happens. I’ve been trying for two days the restore keeps freezing. Their online help is useless!!! Then if you try to call them they want another $20 for support. STAY AWAY!!!!!!

  • Paul

    Old laptop running XP started acting up almost a year ago. Heard Howard Sterns ad and figured what the heck 50 bucks….My mother board went so off I went for a new laptop w/Vista….No problem most files where restored.Now my subscription expired and I haven’t renewed. My computer is acting weird.I boot up yesterday and my desktop appears like when I first got the machine asking me to register(the PC) I did that a month ago all my icons gone different wallpaper etc. Ah …Houston? After a reboot it all came back.Today tried to do some online banking…Couldn’t log in. Called the bank and she had no problem logging into my bank account. I mention Carbonite….And am told that’s the problem? Can they do this? Anyone else experiencing these issues? Holy crap

  • opticalamplififer

    New PC running Vista. New PC has Vista and Norton 360 and Carbonite keeps telling me my files are not backed up and cannot get an internet connection when one is present.

    Worked with Carbonite Customer Service, if you want to call it that, and still have the problem. Referred the problem to Carbonite VP Jeff who turned me over to Leon. Now Leon at Carbonite wants me to spend $19.95 for customer support. I have spend untold hours trying to fix this NIGHTMARE with NO success.

    I wish I never heard of Carbonite and their “service”. I would NOT recommend this service to anyone…friend or foe!

  • reaperwoman

    My boss installed carbonite loved it and then sent me a coupon for it she liked it so much. Then carbonite started freezing up after backing up files. Nerfarious things started happening like zone alarm froze when carbonite was running. Well thhings went from bad to worse. My boss had set up carbonite on her home computer and that computer had the exact same problems that the office computer did. She used or should I say tried to use the troubleshooting solution found on carbonite’s website to no avail. Then both computers froze and she lost the internet at home and we are in the process of replacing both hard drives. Thanks carbonite

  • Jon L. Gateley

    Installed Carbonite on my intel iMac. Worthless. FAQ’s and Chat no help. No response to my request for cancellation yet. Will get my credit card company to reverse the charges. Will try to get rid of it. Any good ideas for getting rid of it?

  • Som Prasad

    had problem with Carbonite, online agent sorted it out after live chat and remote access in 15 mins – was a bit wary of giving him remote access, but seemend very professional – and did the job nicely!

    So 5 stars for carbonite support

  • joe holley

    I tried Mozy about 2 years ago, and Carbonite last year. Neither one was worth the price. With Carbonite I was unable to restore a file I accidently deleted. It was a bad experience. Since mid last year, I have been using a company that has been offering online backups for 10 or 11 years. Don’t know about their support per say – I used it once for a simple question, but their software is awesome.

  • joe holley

    The company I spoke of in the comment above is Subterranean Data. Their web site is They had a free trial when I signed up, I assuem they still do.

  • Chris Matthews

    Carbonite initially gave me a few issues that I had problems getting resolved with the online support. Online support seem to be equipped to deal with simple issues however if you are unable to remove folders from your back up selection or anything behaves irrationally, (which in my case was due to a Carbonite software version change) then I suggest you escalate the problem. Send an e-mail that clearly explains your experience to someone like the CEO of the company who clearly shows on the Carbonite web site that he wants feedback on the product. My issue was dealt with professionally and to my satisfaction once my problem was fully understood. Lets be fair what two PCs ever work the same enabling software like this to work flawlessly in every case. Also how many people visit or look for a site like this when nothing goes wrong. Its not all bad news. Carbonite 5 stars from me.

  • Mike D

    I tried Mozy about 2 years ago and it just about brought my PC to a dead stop because it was suing so much in resources. Tried to contact customer support and never got an answer.
    Went with carbonite and everything seemed great. Initial backup (about 120 gig) took a while, but didn’t use much in the way of resources.
    When computer crashed restored everything from a local backup and attempted to set Carbonite back up. After more than 2 weeks, it was still attempting to back everything up and was saying I had more than 210 in backup files (with almost 20 gig left to backup). Yes PC was running 24/7, not set to go to sleep, and have a decent interest speed 0about 3 mbs.
    I attempted to chat online 3 times with Carbonite about this. Two times chat sessions cut off mid way through. Never could get it working the 3rd time. Have sent 4 emails spelling out my problems, twice they have come back with instruction on how to restore my data even though I have made it clear I am attempting a new backup, not restore. Other 2 times no response at all. Email response is about 48 hours.

    I’m dropping online backup services except for critical files. WIll go back to an external hard drive stored in offsite safe.

  • David

    Just a note – carbonite caps uploads to about 1mbit/s.

    It’s quite frustrating, since my connection is capable of 20-200 times that, depending on which ethernet jack I use.

  • Lexi3130

    Recently upgraded computer (Vista) and restored files from Carbonite. Then I realized that any work I had done since 4/11/09 had not been backed up. Reinstalled it and still had the problem. For the past 3 weeks I have dealt with 4 support people. The first one said he had sent me instructions on how to send my logs to them – NEVER SENT IT! They have had my logs for 2 weeks and every time I go back to support they need an additional 12-48 hrs. My subscription ends this coming week and I will not reup. Don’t sell a product if you can’t support it.

  • Lynette

    Part of the reason that I went with Carbonite was the remote access feature to my home computer when on business travel.

    I just discovered that this feature does not work. Carbonite’s “Live Chat” person told me that engineers are working on the problem but didn’t know when it would be fixed.

    This was a big selling point in Carbonite advertising and yet the feature is not available. Sounds like a “bait and switch” technique.

    I am concerned about their claims of reliability for system restore.

  • Randal

    I just got out of a chat with Carbonite support and Timothy tells me “don’t worry” when I discovered that their remote access doesn’t function. He said that their engineers are aware of the problem. Oh good then I won’t worry,,,,,,, He said check back in a couple of days. No problem Tim, I can shut down the business for a few days. No worrys!!

  • Greg

    I renewed my subscription to carbonite this past April. During the prior year, I experienced the random floppy access issue that other users have experienced. At the time I first became a customer (April 2008), I was told that the developers were aware of the issue and it was to be fixed shortly. I would update my carbonite client every other month or so, hoping for a fix. The last time I did this, the issue had gotten worse. Any time I created a new folder inside a folder already being backed up by carbonite, I was unable to rename the folder until the floppy drive engaged and made some nasty grinding sounds. I sent email from the carbonite client to technical support describing the problem. After waiting two weeks, I decided enough is enough and I cancelled my subscription and received a refund. Interestingly enough, I had signed up as a reseller and had been fairly happy with how it performed, but this issue with non-responsive technical support has been a problem that I have experienced from the very beginning. I’ve sent email to support multiple times, on my behaf or on the behaf of a customer to whom I had resold the carbonite service only to never get a response back. And, even after notifying the company president (or at least that’s where the email supposedly goes) nearly a year ago about the issue, it looks like nothing has changed.

    But, the bigger message I want everyone to hear is this: if you’re having the kinds of issues that have been described here, file a Better Business Bureau (BBB) complaint. If you go to carbonite’s website, simply click on the BBB logo to be taken to the Boston BBB affiliate. Currently, their business rataing with the BBB is a B-. The more people who file complaints, the more likely this rating is to be effected and hopefully send a strong message to this company.

  • kathy h

    Terrible product…it might backup date but when you need a full restore it won’t work and the customer service is of no help. Don’t waste your money

  • hankie w

    we use an ioSafe. Fireproof waterproof hard drive to backup to.

  • Brian Llewellyn

    Carbonite back up is an awful service. The tech support is even worse. I paid for my subscription and my hard drive crashed. The “death click” and Carbonite could only restore 90% of my files. The other ones were unrestorable. What? it is a back up software that has lots of bugs. Do not buy a subscription as it is a waste of money. The customer service is a joke too. All they can tell you is what is on their computer screens over in Asia somewhere. Find another way to back up your data as this one is a joke.

  • Rich

    Carbonite seems to get installed with a Sun JDK update now. And it doesn’t show up in Add/Remove programs! on an XP Windows machine. That is pretty lame marketing and casts shame on Sun for including it.

  • Skyenowa

    Saw this attached to Sun, even looked at it on BBB which is a grade of A, but so glad to read all your posts, which we will not be getting Carbonite-ignite.

    Thanks to everyones comments.

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  • Erik

    Despite the occasional good review Carbonite still hasn’t improved their service. You think their service is great at first and then the start to limit you. Their support is just insane as well. I wrote up the story of my bizarre but true experience with them. I was thinking of Mozy but some folks have commented on my blog that they aren’t any better. You can read about what I went through with Carbonite here but if you are past that point, read my next post on how to get a refund

  • Amadjuster

    I installed Carbonite yesterday morning and I started getting the BSOD last night around 9PM. I continued getting these and actually thought Satan had reinstalled Windows 98 ME because I haven’t seen that many Blue Screens since then. I ran MemTest and everything was fine, so I finally got it to boot up long enough to go in and uninstall Carbonite, and I have not had a BSOD since. I am running XP Pro with SP3, an Intel Q9300 CPU, and 3 GB of memory. No problems until I installed Carbonite. I will stick with Acronis TI 11.

  • Steve

    Suddenly this awful program appeared on my computer called Carbonite. Don’t know what it is or why I would want it and don’t care. Just want it gone.

    Now I see it came from Sun Micro with a Java update.
    No more Java updates for me.

    Now why didn’t my anti virus program catch this thing, Trend Micro anti virus must suck!

  • Andrew Hargreave

    You might want to check out which offers both offline backup as well as keeping multiple computers sync’d up. Pricing is very reasonable as well.

  • John Lauchert

    My only customer service experience with Carbonite took place recently after I had purchased a new computer that came with a different software backup service already installed. After receiving the computer, I contacted Carbonite to see if they would either 1) refund the last two (2) months on my previous subscription or 2) apply the unused subscription period to the end of a future purchase (which I would be making after the trial on my new computer expired). Carbonite’s response-1) NO, 2) NO. Their refund policy is archaic in today’s fast-moving, transparent world. I would have thought they would have welcomed applying the unused subscription to the end of a new order for their product but I was wrong…amazingly! Like a few others who have commented on various aspects of a backup service, I too would favor one with a business model that is capable of allowing the provider to offer good service and make money (in lieu of going with a “free” service or one where the business model was sketchy). Unfortunately, the customer service which I received in this matter will preclude my being able to do business with Carbonite in the future. Thankfully, the market is full of options! Based on some of the other horror stories I am reading, my decision to go elsewhere seems to have many other good reasons.

  • Al Adams

    I had a Free One Year Trial Offer to Carbonite, Yes it worked on a Vista PC.

    I am so glad I never Bought and Paid for the Carbonite service, I didn’t like how my service Just stopped working… one day, after less than four weeks of use. I now know that trial accounts are treated differently than full service accounts, even through I was suppose to have One Whole Year, under the agreement I understood. I am letting everyone I know of my Dissatisfaction with Carbonite backup service. I will be using another backup Arrangement from now on, doubtful I will ever use Carbonite ever again, Again I will be telling my experiences with The Carbonite backup service, to anyone and everyone. Now I am having trouble removing the Carbonite from the PC in question, If I have to do a Full re-install of My Operating System, and programs, That will be also included, as part of my “sad tale”, I will be talking about this, at our Computer Club meeting in about Three weeks. Just to let you know “Not A Happy Customer” Al

  • John Martin

    This is just my $0.02 – I have been a Carbonite customer for two years and am reasonably pleased with their service. I have had to do a complete download three times so far, and no data was lost. One must understand that this is not on-line instant file retrieval system, an that a restore can take considerable time. The initial upload time depends primarily upon the upload speed of the internet connection; my DSL upload rate is terrible. The file restore is partly a function of the link download speed, but most likely the speed of the Carbonite servers. I currently have about 81,000 files spread over 110 GB at Carbonite. The download to my new computer took three days; however, I had selected some critical files to move first and they were restored within minutes. The last upload from my new computer took nearly a month to complete. I am running Vista 64 bit. I also experienced the “lack of activity” problem mentioned so often mentioned. This problem for me lasted for over a week, and was caused by an automatic restart of the computer after a Vista OS update. And like others have mentioned, emails to Carbonite were of little help. What fixed the problem was to install every Microsoft update applicable to my system. After installing one of the optional updates, Carbonite started working correctly. Carbonite does not seem to handle power failures or OS reboots very well. What I do now is to use local storage to make an automatic mirror image of my system; it is fast in both directions. This covers my day to day backup needs, and is likely all that I will ever need. For the true emergencies, i.e., theft, fire, flood, etc., I still use Carbonite. I know that my data is safe there, and that I can get it when needed. I have not personally tried Mozy, but the negative comments I see on the internet about Mozy look very similar to the Carbonite negative comments.

  • James Boatwright

    Is Carbonite a product of Sun Systems, et al etc.?
    If that is the same Sun systems, et al, etc., that produced the anti-virus system that ruined my WIN98SE, I don’t want anything to do with Carbonite or anything that. this Sun outfit produces.
    I would appreciate replies on this subject.

  • Mark Underwood

    See my blog post on Carbonite’s customer service at

    I think they’re a work in progress, but you decide.

  • Ron Eberhart

    Here is what I sent Carbonite two weeks ago, and what I recieved back form them. I ahve not heard anything from them since even after I contacted the Presedent himself. In my opinion the customer support here is non-existant and I dont thik David (CEO) gives a shit!!! I know I will be moving on and WILL NOT RECOMMEND this service to anyone.

    I have been reluctant to contact you because I know you are a busy man and I wanted to try to get help thru your normal channels before escalating this to you. I have tried and tried now to get things resolved, but I have just been amazed that no one will seem to address these issues with me. I will give you the case number (#523400-1304635#) so you can pull your tickets there to see the history, but then give you my questions so it may be more clear.

    1. Slow backup – I have been a customer for nearly 2 years now and at one point I had all my files backed up. I then upgraded to a new 1TB disk and in the process of this upgrade Carbonite thought I had a new system or something and started ALL over again backing up my files. So I figured maybe I did something wrong and would just live with it as it was making good time backing up the files. But then it hit a wall and was only backing up 1-2gig a WEEK and that was unacceptable.

    2. Can’t contact – So with the slow issue I tried to file a ticket using the tool and I waited for a week after hearing nothing and tried again. At that point it told me the last message had not been sent and to try again which I did, and another week or maybe month went by before I tried again. Well I figured it was not going to send it so I went to the web and contacted someone. They looked and said that everything was fine and nothing could be done to speed things up. But nothing was done to correct anything!! No fix to the issue of contact. Well fine I went on my way, but it was still crawling so I contacted again and someone did something because it went sailing along for a couple of weeks till it again died in the water. I again contacted the web interface and was told that all is normal it was just over 200gb so it would be slow now. GREAT!! Do you know how long it will take to backup a 1TB disk at 2gb a WEEK? I did get a response from Maxwell however and I was very please that he at least explained the details of your policy to make things slow. Mind you I at one time had this all backed up, but now I am only about 490gb backed up. Please remember that number of 490gb for a minute. Also remember that I only use my system about 2-3 hours max a day the the rest of the time 24×7 it is on and I have an excellent cable connection with very good bandwidth.

    3. Lost data – So now it is the end of September and it has been many months since this all started. I went on vacation with that 490gb of data safely tucked away on your servers, and low and behold when I came back from vacation I had a whopping 170gb of files. I did nothing to the system since I was not here, but where did they go? Following up on the ticket once again I asked where my files went? They told me to send the log files so I tried the tool and told them I did not think it would work. It did not after I tried 2-3 time to send them that way. I contacted them again to say I was not able to send them that way and if they would tell me where they were I would just attach them to an email and send so they sent me instructions on how to do that. After a couple of tries I finally got them sent but heard nothing for several days. So I again sent a message to ask if they had received them and had a chance to examine them to answer my questions. The response I received today was unbelievable!! Nothing is wrong!! Everything is fine!! And did not address a single issue.

    So as you can see no one has addressed my questions much for more than to say, all is well and things are just slow. Can you answer my questions?
    Where are my files? Will it always be this slow? If so then I surely will need to find another backup service since It will be impossible for you to keep up. My biggest question though is, how do you expect customers to react to customer service like this? I am at the end of my rope. I like your software, and system idea, but it needs to work!! And when it does not, then I need support and not just glossed over. I have sent several customers your way, but I am reluctant to send any more since I do not recommend poor products. That reflects badly not only on you guys, but ME in particular. Kim Komando swears by you guys, but I am sure thinking about taking my story to her too for her opinion. Can you tell I am pissed?

    As I say, all I really want is to be helped. I hope that you will take this seriously and get me that help. Let me know what you need from me.


    Hello Ron and thank you for your e-mail.

    David Friend, our CEO, has asked me to assist you.

    Thank you for your note and for explaining your situation. I see that your account is listed under I will have one of our Senior Support technicians contact you to determine why the files are no longer in your backup.



    Carbonite Customer Support

    Backup. Simple.

  • miles

    Why does anyone want their data, gigbits worth, backed up over the internet? It would take days to restore 100gb if not weeks.

    I use Acronis True Image Home and backup to a Thecus N0204 NAS. This is much better than backing up to a site that I have no idea who is looking at my data or who has access to it.

  • richard artes

    WARNING this product does not backup your videos. But it does backup photos?!? What use is that?!? Make sure you manually back up your video files.

  • Steve C.

    I suggest that people do not use Carbonite.

    I did read the reviews of Carbonite and still tried it.
    I figured that I was tech savvy enough to figure out
    how to use the product. Sadly, I was not.

    The backup system is quirky. That is the most polite description that I can come up with. It picks
    and chooses what it wants to back up and is not
    always clear in what it has excluded. Next if you have any real amount of data, it is slow.

    Last, it was impossible in my case to get my data out of Carbonite as my system crashed hard and cascading. Carbonite does not have the robustness to be reliable for when things really go wrong.

    Carbonite customer service in their chats
    answers nearly every question, but usually with an answer that is none responsive.

    I am not the only user of Carbonite totally diappointed in the product. 48 or 89 reviews at
    this point in time hate Carbonite at Amazon.
    And, as Carbonite has admitted to stacking reviews
    in the past, it is impossible to believe the positive reviews.

    Carbonite is cabable of recovering a deleted file if you catch it in a couple days. After that, it is not a robust enough system for reliable backups.


  • James S

    I’m sitting here enduring a painfully slow restore of a simple data disk by carbonite. It had 26,000 files to restore and is through just over half of those after two days of restoring. I will be doing my own backups to an external hard drive when this is complete and then will either cancel my subscription to carbonite or let it expire. I would not recommend to anyone.

  • Jack

    Ever tried SugarSync. They’re cool IMO. Carbonite is better than the rest in the huge amount of extra features and automation capabilities. Once set up you don’t have to do a thing. But as the others said… that’s not too easy to do.

  • Cameron

    Carbonite is Garbage. It says my backups are complete, when more than half my files are not being backed up. I requested a refund since i signed up for three years; and got an email linking me to there no refund process. I am in the process of contacting Visa.

    Anyways, Avoid Carbonite, its service doesnt work, customer support sucks, and they offer NO REFUNDS!

  • Juan Maclovio

    Carbonite is absolutely abysmal. I have lost many valuable documents– ..dwg,, ,jpg.,avi and you name it. Their service is very unuser friendly. I would recommend it to no one

  • Ole Danielson

    Carbonite doesn’t work. It fails to backup normal Office files downloaded from Outlook 2007 claiming they are “temporary files”. They are not. They refuse to respond to my many requests for resolution to this issue. “Never Worry About Your Backup Again” is an outright lie. You will lose files. It’s too bad about their attitude, too. If they were willing to own it, I’d let them work it out, but they just don’t seem to care.

  • Judy

    Carbonite is absolutely horrendous. I had used their service a year or so back, and had hoped it had improved, as I would reconsider it if improvement had occurred. So a short time ago, after an inordinate wait, I managed to get connected to one of their Chat agents – which is typically impossible to do, even if you’re the first person in line. Finally, an agent answered. I input my question and was left to hold and hold and hold. After another significant amount of time, I typed in “Is anybody there?” No response. I waited again. When there was no response again, I typed in “Guess not. Signing off.” So in a sense, I got my answer. It is business as usual with Carbonite. If you like to take chances with your data and support services, then this is the place for you.

  • reneewcase

    So how do you remove the (*&(%## ** thing?

  • Billy

    My two cents: Carbonite is an absolute disaster. Their management people have no honor, no integrity, their tech folks have too little savvy to be of any use. Here’s a transcript of my most recent experience with one of them. Pathetic. Do not buy the product.

    Ben K. (Listening)
    Ben K.: Hi, my name is Ben K.. How may I help you?
    Ben K.: Hi Gary
    Ben K.: How may I assist you?
    Gary: I just experienced a chat with Vincent M. I suspect that he was unable to resolve my problem so he simply ended the chat. Very bad.
    Ben K.: I apologize for the inconvenience.
    Gary: It was an INSULT, not an inconvenience.
    Gary: May I copy/paste the transcript of our chat?
    Gary: Hello. Are you still there?
    Communication with Ben K. has been lost. Please wait while attempts are made to restore the connection.
    You will be requeued in approximately 120 seconds.
    Communication with Ben K. has been restored.
    Ben K.: Yes.
    Ben K.: I apologize Gary, actually today we are facing some technical issue, that’s why your chat disconnected.
    Gary: If ok, I will copy/paste the first part of my terminated chat with Vincent M. It describes the problem.
    Ben K.: Okay, so what problem you are facing?
    Gary: I am missing many critical folders and files of data. I had them on my C: drive and backed them up on a DVD before installing Carbonite and making the initial backup. Vincent M could not help. I went to the Info Center, clicked Restore, and started searching for file names. They could not be found on the Carbonite backup drive. They exist on my backup DVD, but not in Carbonite. The files are too critical and too numerous for me to have inadvertently deleted them.
    Ben K.: Are all the files and folder are backed up by Carbonite?
    Gary: AGAIN, we could not find them there – any of them.
    Gary: If you wish to view my screen as I repeat what I did with Vincent M I can do that for you.
    Ben K.: Okay, let me check your previous chat.
    Ben K.: Please allow me a moment.
    Gary: ok
    Ben K.: As you said that Carbonite is deleting your files, I apologize Carbonite just back up and restore your files. If you are sure that files are backed up by Carbonite then I can assist you for restoring files.
    Gary: Please take a look with me. Will you view my system?
    Ben K.: Do you want me to take remote access of your computer?
    Gary: Just remote access, not remote control please.
    Ben K.: Please allow me a moment.
    Gary: Hello?
    Gary: I have been waiting 10 minutes.
    Ben K.: I am discussing your issue with my senior, please allow me a moment.
    Ben K.: I apologize Gary, either I need the complete access or I will not able to assist you properly. I will search your files for you.
    Gary: OK. I have no choice.
    Gary: Go ahead and send me the remote access app.
    Ben K.: Okay, just conform me one thing that all that files are backed up by Carbonite or not?
    Ben K.: Had you seen green dots on that files?
    Gary: I don’t think you understood my first comments. The files are MISSING from my C: drive. So there is nothing to see green dots on.
    Gary: I am missing many critical folders and files of data. I had them on my C: drive and backed them up on a DVD BEFORE installing Carbonite and making the initial backup. Since Carbonite has been running for quite some time, now the files are missing. Completely gone.
    Ben K.: Actually Carbonite default back up location is C:/users and you are saying that your files in under C drive. Can you provide me the location of that files.
    Gary: I do not understand what you are saying or what you want.
    Ben K.: If you have that file under C drive not in C:/users then Carbonite will not back up that file automatically, you need to back up that file manually.
    Gary: I’m sorry that doesn’t make sense to me either. What do you mean?
    Ben K.: Okay.
    Ben K.: You have all that file on C drive, but Carbonite don’t back up C drive. Carbonite back up C:/users by default.
    Ben K.: So, you need to back up manually if you have that files in C drive.
    Gary: My files WERE below C:/Users
    Gary: The problem is not that the files were NOT backed up. They were DELETED – apparently by Carbonite.
    Ben K.: Which type of files are those, I mean documents, music?
    Gary: That should make no difference but they are Word documents, text documents executables, PDF files, ini files, html files….. everything.
    Ben K.: Okay.
    Ben K.: Now I am taking your computer remote access. Shall I take remote access of your computer?
    Gary: ok
    Ben K.: Please click on
    Gary: I have been having so much trouble with this that I decided to read your Terms of Use. They say that Carbonite is not responsible for ANY damage of ANY kind to my computer. I am convinced that Carbonite has ALREADY damaged my computer sufficiently and I cannot permit more damage to happen. You can view, but I must decline to give you complete control over my system.
    Gary: So, at your direction, I can do everything you would be able to do.
    Gary: Is that agreeable to you?
    Ben K.: I suggest you to give me complete control, you can watch me what ever I will do, if you see anything wrong then you can end the session.
    Ben K.: So, Gary do you want me to take control of your computer?
    Ben K.: Are you there?
    Gary: This has been a very unfortunate and unenjoyable experience for me. I am uninstalling Carbonite and I hope I am never so unfortunate as to see the name again. The technical support has been shaky at best. No one listens to problem descriptions or has the technical know-how to take charge of things and drive them to a successful conclusion.
    You have disconnected.

  • Rona

    Safecopy backup allows you to backup multiple computers on a single account and they also offer a 3GB trial version which lasts for life.

  • Natalie

    I have over 250 gigs of design files backed up via Carbonite. After experiencing a total system crash a week ago – I still haven’t had any files “restored” via Carbonite despite running my computer and a “restore” 24/7 since then. Ludicrous.

  • William Pritchard

    I am a hobby photographer with 400 GB of files. I have been backing up for two months and still have 150 GB to go. At the rate of two GB per day, I may never catch up. Carbonite is clearly not the solution for photographers with 20+ MB picture size.

  • J

    Regarding Billy’s post above –
    Can’t say for sure since I wasn’t there, and don’t know how he did it, but if his files are missing after he did a backup to DVD, I suspect that he Moved, not Copied the files from his C drive to his DVD. That’s why they are not longer on his C drive, (and would not even be available to Carbonite to backup). I doubt there is any code in Carbonite that would delete files from his C drive, at least not without his permission. Don’t flame me, just suggesting a possibility.

  • Shannon

    I tried Carbonite through their free trial. While happy with their service I ultimately decided that it wasn’t something that I needed. I attempted to uninstall the program, however, it appears I am stuck with it forever! What I have found is THERE IS NO WAY TO UNINSTALL THE PROGRAM. I am plagued with pop-ups that tell me that my subscription has expired. DO NOT USE CARBONITE! I am extremely disappointed with this company.

  • PuppyBreath


    Seriously, my one-man business will take ONE MONTH to restore all files.

    And that’s on a blazing Web connection with new hardware that Carbonite staff remotely tuned for maximum download speeds.

    After a while, Carbonite Tech Support’s advice became, “Be patient.”

  • D Thieman

    Backup began on my WinXP Pro, fast PC about 3 weeks ago with Carbonite. Now at 26% done, 6.3 Gb done, 17.6 Gb to go as of 7/21/2011. Spent one hour on hold last week for phone service, never got through. “High call volume” greeting was on. A bit over 2 Gb backed up per week, it appears, so far.

  • D Thieman

    There has been a much happier than expected result for me after my online support request. At present I’ve had a backup speed of about 6 GB per day for the past 2 days. Here is my detailed posting on the Smart Computing website from yesterday, about how it came to pass:
    “My rather no-nonsense email to Carbonite Customer Service gave the details and noted my awareness of their issues in the blogosphere with slow upload and non-responsive responses to client concerns. Perhaps its tone and details led to an escalation to a suitable technical respondent, because I did not get an overseas contractor, a “quoting of the FAQs,” or a putting-it-all-back-on-the-client response. A Carbonite person in Plano, Texas replied and signed her name. To summarize, she said I should expect a 3-4 GB per day upload speed. She had looked at the details of my backup file and found it was not proceeding normally. One issue was that Carbonite was having difficulty maintaining a ‘shadow copy’. She advised: ‘Carbonite uses VSS (Volume Shadow Service) to backup files while they are in use. However, Windows only allows one instance of VSS at a time. Please try disabling SQL Server to see if there is any improvement in the speed of your initial backup.’
    Other advice included rebooting my computer and my internet router, making sure I have a wired router connection (I do) and that Disk Defragmenter has been run recently (it had). Proprietary firewalls (Norton, McAfee, etc.) can cause problems (not the issue here.)
    I disabled SQL Server (some direction about “how” to a non-expert would have been welcome, but I found it: (WinXP Pro system) Program Files>Microsoft SQL Server>80>Tools>Binn>sqlmangr). Froze backup, rebooted computer and router, and restarted backup.
    In the past 24 hours since doing all that, about 5.5 GB have been backed up, so this was a successful Customer Service result.
    Carbonite could do itself a lot of good by communicating some of these basics as part of bringing in a new client, even as simply as advice to “without fail” read some key FAQ articles. Those would include “Important Things to Know about Carbonite as You Get Started,” “Getting Started with Carbonite,” “Stuck Backup and Backup Errors,” “Backup Overdue” which includes the procedure for uninstalling and reinstalling Carbonite,” “SQL and other Databases” which needs added to it the possible need to disable SQL during your initial backup, and “Sending a Support Request” which includes the key information that an email request through their Support site automatically attaches your Carbonite file for review by the responding associate–a big advantage over a CS phone call that could be mentioned in the phone greeting to everyone’s benefit!”

  • g r kenya

    After the recurring 2013 error, I reinstalled the Seagate FREEAGENT software. The errors persist, and EVERY TIME I restart my computer now, I receive the “Free Trial Offer” from Carbonite…talk about invasive and intrusive. (And no, I didn’t fail to respond to the “DO NOT SHOW ME THIS AGAIN” message.

  • Stephanie Keys

    Phone calls to support are answered but pretty much useless….I was using carbonite to back up my business files and personal files and all though it gives a 100% recovery report none of the files are able to be opened I lost all email contacts my word docs open as wing dings and my accounting software was “uncompatible”. The response was “sorry nothing more I can do”. What carbonite was a false sense of security.