Would it be worth $50 to you to know that every file on your home computer is being backed up offsite without any intervention or attention on your part? And better yet, that you could retrieve any of these files from any computer at any time? I wasn’t sure either, until I tried a 15 day evaluation copy of Carbonite. If you’re thinking that on-line backup is too expensive, too slow, or too complicated, it’s time to revisit the possibility that there might be someone out there who can do it quickly and cheaply WITHOUT limiting the size of your backup.

Registering for the service and loading the small app was a snap. After loading it Carbonite immediately started backing up all the files on my system (except OS files). These included my Outlook .pst files, my photos and videos and yes, even my Notes databases.

Carbonite runs quietly in your system tray showing a green padlockCarbonite Icon icon when all your files have been backed up. When a backup is in progress the padlock is yellow, and if there’s a problem (and I haven’t had one yet), the padlock turns red and invites you to open the control center to see what’s going on.

The control center couldn’t be simpler -

Carbonite Welcome GIF You can check the status of your backups at any time and you can set options for additional files or folders to backup (or not), and even manage the bandwidth used by Carbonite, if for example, you’re an on-line game or videophile.

Carbonite also makes it easier for you to see the backup status of any files or directories on your computer. Any file that has been backed up successfully shows a green dot near the file icon. Carbonite folder icons Likewise any directories that have been backed up successfully show a blue dot, and any files that have recently been changed or created and have not yet been backed up show a yellow dot near the file icon.

Retrieving backed-up files is a snap since the Carbonite server appears as a mapped drive in Windows explorer. Just click on the Carbonite “drive”, log in and all your files are there for the taking.

Normally, I wouldn’t report on an utility that wasn’t free, but this one may be the exception that proves the rule. Be aware that the first backup could take several days as Carbonite monitors and moderates the it’s bandwidth usage so other network and internet applications won’t slow down. Once the initial backup is complete, daily “replication” occurs continuously in the background as files change.

Download the trial version and let it rip. Just beware, that once you realize your files have been safely backed up off-site, you won’t want to give up this valuable service and you WILL undoubtably spring for the 50 bucks.