Sync what?

That was the question I asked as I approached the reps at the Trend Micro booth. We all know the name – they’re the people who keep us virus-free. (They are now boasting anti-virus software for your hand-held devices, but that’s another story for another time.)

SafeSync is their newest offering, and I think it’s exciting. I know a lot of people who use DropBox for their backup and instant access to files on the go, but there’s just something about it that has always bothered me. The thing I dislike most is the fact that it requires you create additional folders, and copies of whatever it is you want to sync – or store in the cloud. That doubles the disk space I’m using on my computer in some cases, and isn’t this all about saving local space?

About 6 months ago, I purchased a subscription to Online Storage Solution. The price was great, the amount of storage was amazing…but the site is down more than it’s up, and I have yet to be able to complete a full backup of any directory, no matter how small. The last few support emails I have sent have gone unanswered, despite their rapid response when I first signed up for the service.

So yes, when Trend Micro announced SafeSync at ShowStoppers at CTIA last night, I perked right up. This could be my answer. This video gives you a nice overview, but now that I’ve had a chance to install it on both my Mac and my iPhone (yes, there’s a free smartphone client in almost every flavour!), I wanted to give you a more in-depth look.

We’ll start with their basic pricing structure, which you can see in the screen cap below.

SafeSync pricing


Tiers for everyone. A nice variety of sizes and prices. If you’re going to use this for backup, you probably want to go all the way and get 100GB. I know this is the way I’m going.

Like Dropbox, you can access your files from any connected device: pc, Mac, handheld. The iPhone app is full featured. You can view your photos, watch your videos, listen to your music. All from a very appealing user interface.

Of course, not only can you access your files from your iPhone or Android device, but you can upload photos and videos as well.

When you set up SafeSync on your pc or Mac, you tell it which folders to sync. You can change the sync’d folders at any time through your settings.

The first time you sync, depending on the size or the number of files you are syncing (or the speed of your internet connection), it could take you quite a while. I began with just my photos folder, and using a medium broadband connection, it showed that it would take about 16 hours to sync (16GB). I had no idea I had that much in my photos folder, although that does include a good bit of HD video now – some of which I really don’t need to sync. I’m unsure yet if you can exclude specific files – probably not.

I actually have far less in my music folder, and very little in my documents folder. Still, I need the 100GB tier.

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