Stash at a Glance
- Free 2GB account.
- Mobile app can automatically save files to Stash.
- Additional Storage inexpensive compared to competitors.
- No Linux version.
- Still Beta.
- No Private encryption keys.
- Only works with MozyHome currently.
- Syncs only Stash folder requiring rearranging of folders/data to sync items.
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Full Stash Review
With the release of Stash, Mozy has offered their users a convenient and easy way to sync files between devices. A couple of things to remember when you start using Stash. First, this is a public beta and not a final release. There are still bugs and there could be problems. In my testing Stash would occasionally crash and I would have to restart it to start syncing files again. The good news is it did not seem to effect my Mozy backup service at all. Only Stash would crash and with a restart would be up and running again. In order to use Stash you need to be a Mozy customer. You can use it with a free 2GB Mozy account and for paid users with a 50GB or 125GB account Stash is currently
Sign up and Installation
It is important to remember that Stash is an add on to Mozy. You need to be an existing Mozy user to start using Stash. If you are not a Mozy user with a 50GB or 125B account you can sign up with the free 2GB account and start using Stash. Once you are a Mozy user you can download Stash from the web admin of your Mozy account. The good news is you don’t need the Mozy backup software installed on all of the computers you want to run Stash on.
Once you download the Stash application for either Windows or Mac it is a straight forward process to install it. When it is installed you simply copy files to the Stash folder and those files are automatically synced online and to your other Stash enabled computers.
Storage and Syncing
Currently there is a limit of having 5 computers attached to a Stash account. While the average home user should not have a problem with that number and it will be perfect for keeping files in sync between a desktop and laptop. Storage is shared with your backup storage so if you have a 50GB account and you have 20GB backed up you have 30GB of storage available for Stash storage. If you have 40GB backed up you will only have 10GB available for Stash.
Adding files to your Stash folder is as simple as copying them to the Stash folder. This is identical to how Dropbox does it and requires you to rearrange how you store your files on your computer if you want them to synchronize them on your other computers. Once files are copied Stash is pretty quick to upload them to the Mozy servers. The speed will depend partly on your location to the Mozy data center but in my testing it was as fast or faster than other services.
Mozy has always had web access to your files, so it is no surprise that you can access your Stash files via the Mozy website. While the access is nice, the interface is still a restore interface. You cannot upload files via the web interface and if the file is to large you can’t download it immediately either. There is certainly room for improvement to make the Stash interface more user friendly, but it is a good start.
Mozy has always had a strong security model, allowing your to use your own encryption key in your backup. Currently Stash does not allow use of a private encryption key, but it is something that is coming according to the Stash FAQ. This is a step in the right direction and something other synchronization services should move towards.
The Mozy mobile apps allow access to your Stash folder so you can easily access your files on your mobile device. For Android users you can also setup Stash to automatically upload your photos and videos from your device to your Stash account. This is great since the data you produce the most on your mobile is probably photos and video and you will want to back it up in case you lose or have your device stolen. Once the photos and video are uploaded you can access them from your other Stash enabled computers and the web interface. You will also not have to worry about backing them up since Stash will already ahve taken care of that for you. This is perhaps the best part of Stash.
Stash is a good first attempt at file synchronization for Mozy. If you are already a Mozy user I highly recommend you sign up and use it. If you are not a Mozy user yet, sign up for the 2GB free version and give Stash a try. It is comparable to many of the other file synchronization services on the market. There is also a referral program that will allow you to get a larger free account and when you do need extra space the cost of storage with Mozy is cheaper than several other options.