Barracuda’s Copy cloud storage

copy-clientA while ago I posted a blurb (well… not here but on Google+) about Barracuda‘s  cloud-based backup service analogous to Dropbox. Copy.com is an interesting contender in the playing field of cloudbackup. This is what the company has to say about data protection and security: “Because Copy is the product of network security and backup giant Barracuda, your files are stored on servers we control and manage, not with a 3rd party like most cloud storage services. For increased security, your data is protected by multiple layers of encryption, including top-secret grade AES 256, both during transfer and while at rest on Barracuda’s enterprise-class cloud storage“.

It’s up to you how seriously you take that claim, but let me just give this advice: if you trust your most sensitive files to the cloud, apply your own encryption first! For example, I have a TrueCrypt container in my cloud storage which contains everything private I have on my computers. This encrypted container is replicated to all my computers as well as to the cloud, providing sufficient backup safety and still keeping my data hidden from secret snoopers without supercomputers.

The site advertises that they use a data-deduplication mechanism, therefore I doubt that your files will be stored in such a way that the NSA is unable to access them… still, it’s a lot of storage for a safety copy of your photos. I guess I’ll take their claims at face value.

Back to Copy: this is a free storage solution, although there are business subscriptions. New free accounts get 15 GB cloud storage for free, and that is quite a bit. When you refer someone else to start using this service, both sides get an additional free 5 GB storage. Click on the link below to get your 20 GB for free, it gives me an additional 5 GB too.

Bonus referral link: https://copy.com/?r=zWvkFg

They have an interesting twist to the concept of file-sharing. WIth Dropbox, you can share part of your own dropbox with other Dropbox users. That shared space will count in the quota calculations of everyone who takes part in the share. So for instance, if you have a free 10 GB dropbox quota you will not be able to add your friend’s shared folder if that folder is larger than 10 GB. With Copy on the other hand, the calculation is different. If you share an amount of data with others, then the used quota is divided among the sharers. So, if you are sharing 10 GB with 4 of your friends, everyone in your group of 5 will not be taxed for 10 GB, but only for 10/5 = 2 GB of quota usage. That is nice.

Sync clients are available for many platforms, Linux (32-bit and 64-bit) and Android included. It took a while to deliver on my promise to create a Slackware package for the Linux sync client, because I was not sure how I wanted to wrap the binaries. But finally here it is. I decided to call the package “copy-client” in analogy to my “dropbox-client” package.

A copy-client package for Slackware, 64-bit as well as 32-bit. Working on versions 13.37 and onwards (those are the Slackware versions I tried at least).

Have fun! Don’t forget to claim your 20 GB free storage using my referral link, and make me a happy camper.

Eric

29 thoughts on “Barracuda’s Copy cloud storage


  1. Thank you Eric! I was working on a SlackBuild for this, but your work puts mine to shame! I appreciate all you do.

    🙂



  2. Hi Eric,

    Thanks for the write-up.

    I also wouldn’t assume that such storage is NSA-proof, but why do you base that assumption on the claim of de-duplication? I assume that they are doing the de-duplication on binary blocks of the encrypted data which other services (e.g. tarsnap) also do. Why would that affect the strength of encryption?

    Dave


  3. Hi Dave

    Usually, data de-duplication in a large cloud datacenter is not done on individual basis – everybody’s data is checksummed and de-duplicated where possible. That is how Dropbox upload speeds can sometimes be so fast – because the file you upload was found on their server (uploaded by someone else) and a new upload is not needed.
    If you want to de-duplicate encrypted data, then you can only do that on an individual basis (my encryption key is diferent from yours).
    But it would not make sense to try and de-duplicate the data which I upload – there should only be a single copy of my data anyway, no matter on how many devices I have a Copy client installed.

    Eric



  4. Is there a max amount of people you can add to your firends list? might be a good way to share some slackware packages… Giving you another 5gb Eric thanks for your work!



  5. Thanks for sharing this.

    TrueCrypt along with copy.com’s claim seems to provide a good solution for encrypting data.

    How confident are you with this scheme. (e.g. The copy client is open source and thus code can be verified.)



  6. It would take someone with the qualities to do a code audit, to compare Copy with Spideroak. However, I do not think the Copy client is open source. The Copy cloud API is open and there’s sample code to use that API on https://github.com/copy-app , but I do not think the actual code for the CopyAgent is in there.

    Spideroak ensures that your data is encrypted on your computer and before it gets uploaded to the server, but the tiny data plan for free subscriptions did not make it an appealing solution for me. I would not trust any cloud storage service with my unencrypted sensitive data, I want to be certain that only encrypted data leaves my network for the cloud.
    And with that attitude in mind, I do not shy back from the use of a service like Dropbox or Copy, where I get more storage for free, even if it may not be safe against prying eyes. Whatever I consider private or sensitive, will be sitting inside a TrueCrypt container.

    And if you want to be even safer, consider building your own cloud, using ownCloud and their Linux and Android clients – all fully open source and on a server controlled by you.

    Eric


  7. Thanks for the explanation.

    Just signed up to try it out. Hope you got the extra 5GB referral!

    By default the sync folder is ~/Copy. Did you create a truecrypt container inside the ~/Copy folder?


  8. Thanks for the heads up mate, you should be getting another 5 Gig now. Btw, do you have any thoughts on Box.com? I got 50 Gig of storage there for free but assume it’s just as insecure as Dropbox, or even worse.


  9. Hi Eric,

    thanks for the information about this cloud service. I have installed your “copy-client” package and everything works fine. However, i would like to ask if there is only the sync option to copy files onto the cloud. As nice as the sync option is I would as well like to use the cloud drive as a normal cloud hard drive to store data without the sync option.


  10. Hi Stephan

    Like Dropbox, the Copy client is a “cloud sync” agent. It means that it keeps a part of your hard drive in sync with your cloud storage.
    I.e. you can *not* use Copy a a “cloud drive” with all your data in the cloud and nothing local.

    Eric


  11. Hi Eric

    I interesting about this, i used dropbox but 2GB i think it’s not enough for me.
    But what make copy different with google drive so you recommended copy than google drive?
    Sorry i just want to know 🙂


  12. Hi swhp,

    I have no preference for either Copy or Google Drive. They both have different use cases. And I still use Dropbox a lot, to sync files between the computers of my family.
    Google Drive integrates nicely with other Google services and is very useful on my ChromeBook. However with Copy I get much more online storage for free…. currently I have 520 GB (!) of free Copy storage.

    Eric





  13. TrueCrypt code has been forked so probably the new team(s) will release new versions in future. In the meantime have a look at Zulucrypt or tc-play.


  14. I have been using Copy for the last month and I need to say is great. I know Mega offers 50 free GB but the interface and design is not as good as copy. Copy has a clean and clear design and it works really well and you have the advantage to increase the storage easily.
    Sign up to try! and get 20gb Free storage with this link https://copy.com/?r=zWvkFg


  15. Hallo Eric, I have been using Copy for a while but somehow it doesn’t work anymore. System Information: Slackware64 current, fresh installation, no multilib. It signs into my account, but then ist is syncing for ever. I receive an error message: “Problem communicating with Copy cloud. Please contact support@copy.com, or try again later”. Any help on this issue is highly appreciated. Do I need to have my user in a special user group or is there any dependency that is maybe missing on a fresh Slackware64 current install? Slackware64 installation is the current version from the 06 October 2015. No Slack updates have been done until now. All is as it was right after the installation of Slackware. Just a few SBO packages have been added and some of your packages. Thanks and all the best from Berlin Stephan.



  16. i, too, have recently been hit by the “problem communicating” error. i can log in (ie it recognizes my account & password and complains if either is incorrect) but it cannot sync. curiously, this is a fresh install on two different computers, too. any ideas? TIA




  17. david, in case you did not notice, this is a Slackware Linux blog. For your Windows related issues, I am sure there are more appropriate places to seek help.
    Updating the Copy client to 3.2.01.0481 certainly helped me on Slackware.


  18. Fair enough, alienbob, although I did notice. I’ve seen quite a few people reference connection problems recently without many definitive answers or even successes, so I’m looking everywhere I can. Notably, I don’t get any response to last month’s email to support@ or this morning’s forum post 🙁


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