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Work for Backblaze at Macworld


blog-macworld-2014-comebyYou love Backblaze. You’ve woken up in the middle of the night asking yourself, “Self, why is it that I’m not working at Backblaze, I love those guys!” Well, here’s your chance!

Backblaze has a big presence at Macworld (March 27-29th) this year and we want someone to come spend a day with us at the Backblaze booth, front and center. Have a devotion to Backblaze? Want to help spread the word about online backup? Want to rub shoulders with Gleb, Yev, Andy, and some other Backblazers? Well listen up, here’s your chance!

How to Enter the Contest

  1. Create a video, 1 minute or less that tells us one or more of the following;
    • Why you want to work the booth
    • Why you love Backblaze
    • Have a good backup story? Let’s hear it!
    • Give us your best “Backblaze Pitch”
    • Personality is key!
  2. Send a link to the video to macbooth@backblaze.com by Midnight March 17, 2014. PLEASE, include your full name and send it from a good email address so we can contact you.

What We’ll Do

We’ll choose up to 5 finalists from the list of entries and then post them on our blog along with a poll, so that you fine folks can help us choose the winner. Once we have it on the blog, we’ll open up voting for a few days (this is when you work your social media magic and spread the word) and at the end of that time, we’ll see who has the most votes, and we’ll crown a winner!

What Do You Get

The winner will receive:

  1. A Macworld pass for you and your 4 closest friends!
  2. Lunch for you on the day that you’ll be joining us at Macworld!
  3. A Backblaze t-shirt!
  4. $250 for helping work the booth on the show floor!
  5. The ability to post or tweet yourself in action working the booth – selfies are encouraged…

What Will Your Duties Be

If chosen you’ll need to do the following:

  1. Choose when you want to work at the Backblaze Booth:
    – Thursday, 10:30am – 5:00pm, or
    – Friday, 10:30am – 5:00pm, or
    – Saturday, 9:30am – 4:00pm
  2. Show up at your scheduled date and time with your “A Game” – you’ll be chatting with the public and potential Backblaze customers.
  3. Be cheery and respectful – otherwise, we might ask you to leave…and that would be a bummer.

Rules of the Contest

  1. While anyone can enter, you are solely responsible for any expenses getting to and from the Moscone Center. We will not pay to fly anyone to California for the event or put them up at a hotel or pay your Muni fair or anything like that.
  2. Backblaze reserves the exclusive right to select the winner and our judgment is final.
  3. As a winner, you will receive a check for $250 from Backblaze. You will be required to complete a W-9 and you are responsible for all federal, state and local taxes.

 

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Unboxing Our New Mac Pro


We love getting new gadget at the Backblaze office and just last week we took delivery of our first Mac Pro! Our designer Casey couldn’t be more thrilled!

We had a bit of fun with the unboxing, but not everyone was as excited about it as Casey.

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A Burger With a Side of Spreadsheets, To Go


The Day the iMac Died.
“The Mac died” my wife sighed into the phone. I wasn’t surprised. First, the dead Mac was our 7 year old iMac computer, which had worked flawlessly the entire time. And second, I was traveling for business and things always seem to “break” when I am on the road.

It was Sunday night. I had just finished a meeting and was walking to dinner when the “The Mac died” phone call came in. “That’s OK,” I said to my wife, “we’ll get another computer next weekend. Everything’s fine.” But, everything was not fine as my wife explained that she had a Monday deadline for a project she was trying to finish. She was trying to save the last couple of spreadsheets and then print everything when the computer hung and wouldn’t reboot. Now she had nothing and she was not happy. “There are 4 or 5 spreadsheets that I need so I can finish everything,” she begged, “we have them backed up don’t we?”

Lesson 1: One Mac is not enough

Yes, we had the iMac backed up, twice in fact with Time Machine and Backblaze. The trouble with Time Machine was that we only had the one Mac at home and it was now dead. Our other computer was a PC and at the time I had no idea if I could plug a Time Machine drive into the PC and read it. Later on, I researched the topic and found that the most popular answer to the question, “Can a PC read a Time Machine drive?” was “Buy another Mac.”

So I had a perfectly good back up of the data on my Mac and at that moment on Sunday night it was not going to help. In the mean time, I had arrived at the restaurant and grabbed a seat at the bar as there was a 30 minute wait for a table.

Lesson 2: Practice makes perfect

Now I know all of you are saying “Backblaze to the rescue,” well not so fast. My wife said that she had never done a Backblaze restore. I cursed myself. Whenever I talk to people about using Backblaze, I always tell them to do a restore just for practice. Sign in, pick a couple of files and request a restore. That way when they really need their data, like when their hard drive crashes a day before a project is due, they’ve been through the process before. Practice makes perfect and I forgot to tell my wife to practice.

I offered to talk her through restoring the files she needed from Backblaze. Three things changed my mind, 1) I didn’t think the other patrons in the restaurant would be thrilled, 2) my Lagunitas was getting warm and my burger was getting cold, and 3) my wife asked me to do it. That’s three good reasons as to why I would restore the files.

My wife texted me the names of the files, 5 in all, and I signed into the Backblaze account for my now dead iMac using the Backblaze Mobile app on my iPhone. While the 3G connection was slow I was able to navigate to each file, download it to my iPhone and then email the file to my wife. It took me about 30 minutes in between bites of my burger.

My wife was able to download the files onto our PC at home and plow ahead with her project. I was a hero, well, Backblaze and I.

Lesson 3: Beware the “Spinning Ball of Death”

On Monday morning, my wife informed me that one of the files I had sent over was not the most current version. It was from Sunday morning and she was certain she had worked on the file late Sunday afternoon. “When did our iMac die?” I asked. “It started acting funny about noon, you know, the spinning ball keep showing up,” she replied, “I rebooted it three or four times and it died for good about 5 pm.”

The last Backblaze backup was at 2:15pm. I can only guess that the iMac was pretty unstable at that point as it spiraled towards its death. My wife, faced with a project deadline crossed her fingers and plowed ahead with the spinning ball of death appearing in ever increasing frequency. Even Backblaze is no match for the spinning ball of death.

RIP iMac

When I arrived home I was able to confirm the obvious, our iMac was dead. I requested a full restore of our files from Backblaze. When we get another Mac, I’ll start with the Time Machine backup to get up and running and use Backblaze to fill in the gaps if there are any. Once, my work MacBook hard drive failed while I was traveling and with my Time Machine drive back at the office, Backblaze filled in the gap very nicely, but that’s another story…

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Mavericks? We’re Ready!


mavericks-wave-560

Backblaze loves our Mac users and we’re guessing some of you have been waiting with bated breath for OS X Mavericks to be available for download. That’s why we’ve worked hard to make sure Backblaze is ready for OS X Mavericks. Apple released the developer-version of OS X Mavericks back in June, and we already have over 1,000 customers running Backblaze on Mavericks.

So update to Apple OS X Mavericks when you’re able to, and continue enjoying the peace of mind that you get knowing that Backblaze has your back.

(Note: Backblaze Version 2.3.1 is the latest on the Mac. To check which version you are running, click the Backblaze icon in the menubar and select “About” from the menu. Running an older version? Just visit https://secure.backblaze.com/update.htm and install over the top.)

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Backblaze: The Strong Silent Type


Online Backup for Valentines Day

Our first Restory is actually two stories. Each lovingly crafted and delivered to Backblaze. And you thought online backup couldn’t be romantic…

A One Way Street

I think I should take this time to just tell you what our relationship is: a one-way street.

Honestly, I don’t think about you at all. You just go and go – constantly running behind whatever I do, and whatever files I create – and I really don’t pay attention in the least.

What’s even worse is that you’re whom I go to first when there’s a problem. I take advantage of the fact that you’re always looking after me. I never even acknowledge you’re around until I lose something – then you’re my only hope. You would think after saving me so many times, I would show more gratitude. The truth is, I kind of like what we have going. You do all the work of following me around and making copies of what I leave behind, and I’ll forget about you until I need you. Deal? Deal.

– Aaron

I Couldn’t Ask for a Better Partner

We met on a dark and stormy night. I was scared. She was not. She had it all. Tons of reliable storage for all my back up needs. She had the confidence, the stamina, and the strength to take all my fears away! The storm raged on. The power kept going out. I knew then that I needed a solution to my back up issues. No therapist could help me. I had to jump in with both feet. I took the plunge and signed up for Backblaze.

Now, 4 months later, I sleep at night knowing she is taking care of my back up needs without any effort on my part. I feel safe and protected. And it just happens. After that initial uncertainty I now love her simplicity, her total competence and loyalty to my data, keeping it secure and safe so I can rock my MacBook without reservation! I know now that every song I download, every video and picture I capture is safe and I will never lose anything, ever again!

I couldn’t ask for a better partner. I am secure in my relationship with her and now I have the confidence to forge ahead with my files, my music, my pictures. All I need to do is just keep on keepin-on and she does the rest.

– Michael

Giving the gift of Backblaze to back up your Valentine’s photos, videos, music and more probably isn’t the most romantic present you can give — we understand. But remember, Backblaze will silently and reliably back up your Valentine’s files long after the chocolates have been eaten and the flowers have died. Such is the calling of the strong silent type.

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A small tribute to Steve Jobs


A small tribute to Steve Jobs
One of our support guys sent an email to the company a few minutes ago saying Steve Jobs died. After a moment of disbelief there was some shock, then sadness. Steve Jobs wasn’t one in a million. He was one in a billion. And while we had never met him, he had a profound impact on our lives.

There will be plenty of tributes to Steve Jobs and the grand scale of his impact.
Here, I just want to share a few small stories:

Unbelievable Turnaround
In 1999, much of what is now the Backblaze team was working on another startup. Some of us loved Apple and pushed to build a Mac version, but at 1% market share, there was just no rationalizing spending time on it. In 2003, we were working on a new startup, but the story was the same: we just couldn’t justify building a Mac version.

Fast forward to 2007, we started Backblaze and decided the Mac would be a first-class citizen at the company. We wanted to support the Mac and believed it had a chance of making some small business sense. Perhaps it would be 10% of our sales.

Instead, the Mac platform is now more than 50% of our customer base. Our CTO, a former Apple employee during the non-Steve Jobs days, said the employees loved Apple, but knew where it was headed. Market dominance with products everyone loves was not that place. The turnaround that has occurred is nothing short of unbelievable.

Unbelievable Products
I vividly remember seeing the first iPhone. I thought it was fake. A mockup or “concept device” perhaps. It was too cool to be real. The iPhone has become a part of my life in a way that I am lost without.

My wife is not a gadget freak, nor a Mac “fanboy”. For a while she rolled her eyes when I would wax poetic about the iPhone. Now she can’t live without hers.

A couple months ago I purchased an Airport Express for our home and sent music via AirPlay from my phone. My wife’s eyes lit up and she said, “Ok, that may just be magic.”

And I guess that was the thing with Steve Jobs. He didn’t just build a reality distortion field; he made us believe magic was possible through his marketing and then really pulled the rabbit out of the hat with the products.

When Apple announced Steve wouldn’t keynote Macworld a couple years ago, we were bummed and handed out flyers showing our support for Steve, to show him he’s being missed. There isn’t much more to say beyond it is a sad day and he will be really missed.

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Backblaze fully supports OS X Lion (10.7)


Backblaze for OS X Lion (10.7)
While Apple just recently announced their newest operating system, OS X Lion (10.7), Backblaze has been working with developers and beta testers for a while to ensure our online backup service is fully compatible.

When you rush out to upgrade to Lion, know that your Backblaze online backup service will work seamlessly. The new OS has 250 new features, but I wanted to call out a few:

  • Versions” and “Auto-Save” – Apple’s new operating system helps protect you from the “oh, no, I didn’t save in the last 10 minutes and lost something!” It does this by continuously auto-saving. Backblaze efficiently stores its own versions and thus excludes these duplicates to optimize your system resources and bandwidth usage.
  • FileVault 2″ – Yay! We’re excited to say that Apple has massively overhauled their encrypted file system and we work seamlessly with this new version. FileVault 2 encrypts the entire file system. As long as you are logged-in, Backblaze will continue to seamlessly backup all data. If you log-out and encryption is turned on, Backblaze will be encrypted as well and pause backing up new data.
  • AirDrop” – This new feature enables local sharing over WiFi with a nearby computer. Backblaze will automatically backup data you share with others or visa-versa.
  • Launchpad” – As a native Mac application in System Preferences, we will automatically appear in the new Launchpad.
  • Download the latest version (v.1.5.5) by clicking the Start Backing Up button on www.backblaze.com and enjoy the service on Lion! (All users will be automatically updated within a few weeks.)

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    Is the Backblaze cloud bigger than iCloud?


    Backblaze Cloud versus iCloud
    Possibly.

    A customer yesterday asked, “Do you have any idea how big iCloud is?” I thought it was an interesting question and poked around.

    Two months ago it was reported that Apple ordered 12 petabytes of storage rumored to be used for its new North Carolina data center.

    Certainly Apple already has significant storage for their existing iTunes and MobileMe data and the North Carolina datacenter has room for much more than 12 petabytes, but is this the storage that Apple expected to need to support the iCloud offering initially? Apple would not confirm, of course, but it does seem plausible now with iCloud announced and Steve Jobs talking about Apple’s massive new datacenter:

    Apple iCloud Datacenter
    Image source: Data Center Knowledge

    At Backblaze we hit 10 petabytes of customer cloud storage by the end of 2010 and now we just crossed 15 petabytes!

    It’s becoming challenging to take a good photo, but here is what 15 petabytes of Backblaze Storage Pods looks like:

    15 petabytes

    So does Backblaze have more cloud storage than Apple for iCloud? Perhaps. ;-)

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