Wasabi: the New, Low Cost Cloud Storage Service

NOTE: This article has nothing to do with genealogy. If you are looking for genealogy-related articles, you might want to skip this one. However, if you would like to learn of a cheap and very secure method of storing data in the cloud for backup purposes, this article may be of interest to you.

Wasabi is a brand-new cloud storage service. The company is so new that not all the planned “bells and whistles” are yet available. However, the present implementation hows a great deal of promise. In short, Wasabi appears to be perfect for Macintosh and Windows users looking for a simple way to use cloud storage at very low prices.

I signed up for Wasabi a few hours ago and, so far, it seems to work well. I am using Wasabi in the same manner as an external disk drive. Installation and operation was simple. If I do encounter problems with Wasabi in the future, I will publish a follow-up article at that time.

The most obvious advantage of Wasabi is the price: $.0049 per gigabyte/month which equals $4.99 per terabyte/month (all prices are in US dollars).

That is cheaper than Dropbox, Google Drive, Amazon S3, Amazon Drive, and most other cloud-based file storage services. Indeed, several competitive cloud-based file storage services do offer free storage for a limited number of gigabytes. However, none of the others will store a terabyte (1,000 gigabytes) for $4.95 a month or less. If you have more than a few gigabytes that you wish to store off-site, Wasabi appears to be the cheapest service available today.

Wasabi also offers a “try it free” option. When creating a new account on Wasabi, you receive up to one terabyte (1,000 gigabytes) free of charge for the first 30 days.

In addition, Wasabi is compatible with Amazon’s popular S3 file storage service that is used by thousands of corporations as well as individuals. If you already have software installed that stores files in Amazon S3, you can take advantage of Wasabi’s lower prices simply by changing the configuration information in your present backup software to point to your new Wasabi account instead of to the present Amazon S3 account.

Using Wasabi is as simple as copying files from your hard drive to a flash drive or external hard drive. In the Wasabi app, click on the files or folders you wish to copy and drag them to the new Wasabi folder. Wait a few seconds or minutes (depending upon the size of the files and the speed of your Internet connection) and the files are copied to Wasabi. That’s it. The files are not automatically deleted from your hard drive. Obviously, you can manually delete them, should you wish to do so.

Please keep in mind there are several disadvantages of using Wasabi, however:

Wasabi works only on Windows 10 Home Edition, Windows 10 Pro, and Macintosh OSX 10.12.5 and later. It does not work on earlier versions of Windows, such as XP, Windows 7, or Windows 8. It also does not work on Macintosh versions earlier than 10.12.5. Also, there is no capability of backing up tablet computers or smartphones.

At this time, Wasabi does not offer automatic file backup software that will create backups every few hours. There are only three methods of copying files to Wasabi;

1. Go to the Wasabi.com web site and download the Wasabi Client for Windows or the Wasabi Client for Macintosh and use it for uploading and downloading files.

2. Go to the Wasabi.com web site, log into your account, and manually specify the files or folders to upload or download.

3. Use some other piece of software that is designed to back up files to Amazon S3 (such as Arq, Cloudberry, CyberDuck, Dragon Disk, Jungle Disk, or similar products) to make the automatic backups for you. I am using CyberDuck simply because I already had that program installed in my computer and I find it easy to use.

As with all backup software, I would never trust Wasabi or any other single cloud-based file storage service to keep the ONLY copy of important files. Hardware failures, software failures, and simple human errors happen occasionally on even the more well-known file backup services. Always keep two or three, or more copies of all your important files in two, three, or more locations. If any one computer dies or if any one cloud-based file storage service goes offline abruptly, you can always fall back to one of your backup copies.

Summation

Is Wasabi Suitable for Everyone?

I would say “No” for several reasons.

1. The company and the Wasabi software are both new. For storage of files that are critical for you, I would suggest that you use Wasabi only in ADDITION to other backup procedures you already have in place. I might change that recommendation after the software has matured a bit more.

2. Wasabi is not a “set it and forget it” piece of software. It will not automatically make backups for you in unattended mode unless you use a third-party backup product, such as Arq. Using Wasabi alone require the user to MANUALLY copy files to and from the Wasabi servers.

3. While the Wasabi documentation is easy to read and is easy to understand for most people, there is some requirement to understand S3 “buckets” when using the Amazon S3-compatible features. To be sure, that is a problem created by Amazon S3, not by Wasabi. The Amazon S3 interface requires some understanding of the unique terminology involved. Any product that offers compatibility with Amazon S3 always has similar requirements. The requirement to understand S3 buckets is not overwhelming. In fact, it is rather simple but will require a bit of reading by anyone not familiar with the terminology involved.

Even though I believe that Wasabi is not suitable for everyone, I also believe it will appeal to many people who possess modest technical skills. First of all, it is cheap. Next, it isn’t any more complicated than that of several other cloud-based file storage services. Finally, Wasabi appears to be very secure and safe from hackers. See https://wasabi.com/product/security/ for the details.

To learn more about Wasabi or to sign up for the service, go to https://wasabi.com.

11 Comments

What are your thoughts on using Crash Plan Pro for $ 10 a month?

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    —> What are your thoughts on using Crash Plan Pro for $ 10 a month?

    CrashPlan is an excellent backup program that is available for Windows and Macintosh. It is a bit more expensive than Wasabi, as described above. However, CrashPlan has the better method of automatically making backups without human intervention. In short, I consider CrashPlan to be a first-class service.

    Like

    Thank you very much. My IT guy believes in idrive but I had Acronis before that and was not pleased with that service going to my externaldrive.

    Like

Would you choose wasabi over Glacier?

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    —> Would you choose wasabi over Glacier?

    The only answer I can give you is “Maybe.”

    Glacier is slower at retrieving files and costs a bit more. In contrast, it has been in operation for several years and has proven to be reliable.

    Wasabi is new, not yet fully developed, but is faster and cheaper.

    I can only say “your choice.”

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Wasabi have hidden fees. Their “Minimum Storage Charge” is for anything below 1TB and will cost you $5/mo

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    Correct. As stated in the above article, “The most obvious advantage of Wasabi is the price: $.0049 per gigabyte/month which equals $4.99 per terabyte/month (all prices are in US dollars).” That agrees with your statement.

    Wasabi is one of the cheapest, perhaps THE cheapest, cloud-based file storage service available today although several other competitive services make the same claim. Whatever the price is today, prices will probably change within the next few weeks or months. The prices for almost all the cloud-based file storage services have been dropping ever since the second such service went into business.

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    Your article doesn’t mention the minimum storage fee. Nor does their pricing page hence it being “hidden”

    However, on your bill you will see the $4.99/mo charge

    So Wasabi will be cheaper if you have larger backups, but not if you have 0.4 TB like I do. Then it’s 3x as expensive

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    —> Your article doesn’t mention the minimum storage fee

    As stated in the above article, “The most obvious advantage of Wasabi is the price: $.0049 per gigabyte/month which equals $4.99 per terabyte/month (all prices are in US dollars).”

    Like most cloud-based file storage services, Wasabi has a minimum charge. (Amazon S3 and Backblaze B2 are the only exceptions I can think of at the moment although I suspect there are one or two others.)

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    “As stated in the above article, “The most obvious advantage of Wasabi is the price: $.0049 per gigabyte/month which equals $4.99 per terabyte/month (all prices are in US dollars).”

    I don’t know why you keep repeating this. This has no bearing on what I’ve said.

    Backblaze doesn’t have a minimum storage charge

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    OK, this will be my last comment on this topic.

    All companies like to publish statements similar to “Our product is cheaper than the competition.” If they don’t write cheaper, they will claim their product is better or more cost-effective or safer or tastes better or has less nicotine or gets better gas mileage or is “whiter and brighter” or some similar claims. Then those same companies will publish “facts” to back up the claims, always ignoring other facts that contradict the same claims. That’s been true in business for centuries.

    In this case, I believe Backblaze is an excellent product with an established reputation while Wasabi is a new product that hasn’t yet had time to create a reputation of any sort. However, I don’t believe that either product is cheaper IN ALL SITUATIONS.

    If my math is correct, anyone with 50 gigabytes of data to back up will find Backblaze to be cheaper than Wasabi at today’s prices.

    Anyone with one terabyte (1,000 gigabytes) of data to back up will find Wasabi to be cheaper than Backblaze at today’s prices.

    That’s why I didn’t claim that Wasabi is cheaper under all conditions. In fact, I didn’t claim any service is cheaper than others under any conditions. Instead, I simply wrote, “The most obvious advantage of Wasabi is the price: $.0049 per gigabyte/month which equals $4.99 per terabyte/month (all prices are in US dollars).” I don’t understand why you keep insinuating that I wrote something different. Go back and read my statement again, you will see that I made no claims about which is the cheapest under different conditions.

    Of course, all of this is at today’s prices. The history of cloud-based file storage services shows the prices keep dropping. I am certain only of one thing: prices will continue to drop in the future. That’s why I didn’t want to make any claims of which service is the cheapest under varying conditions. It all might change tomorrow.

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