Tag Archives: Backblaze Bits

What Is a Yottabyte?

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/what-is-a-yottabyte/

A Yottabyte, We Will Define

A yottabyte (technically pronounced “yadda-a-bite,” not “yoda-bite,” but it’s the eve of May the Fourth and we couldn’t pass up a “Star Wars” reference) is a phenomenally huge number of bytes. As a refresher, a byte is a unit of digital storage made up of eight bits (short for binary digit which are either a one or a zero).

The prefix “yotta” is the largest unit recognized by the International System of Units (SI). It denotes a factor of 1024 or 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 (that’s 24 zeroes in case your eyes are crossing) or one septillion (not reptilian).

To compare, the last time we defined a big number, we looked at an exabyte, which is only a measly 1018.

Put it in other units of measure, one yottabyte =

  • one million (1,000,000) zettabytes
  • one billion (1,000,000,000) exabytes
  • one trillion (1,000,000,000,000) petabytes
  • one quadrillion (1,000,000,000,000,000) terabytes
  • one quintillion (1,000,000,000,000,000,000) gigabytes
  • one sextillion (1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000) megabytes
  • one septillion (1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000) bytes

Feel the force of the zeroes, you will!

To give you some examples of what these fantastic figures actually look like, we put together this infographic with some approximations to bring a yottabyte into perspective. Keep in mind, right now, nothing is actually measured in yottabyte scale—it’s a theoretical number that’s just sitting around waiting for the future of supercomputing to be put to good use.

How Big is a Yottabyte

If you want to share this infographic on your site, copy the code below and paste into a Custom HTML block. 

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”Judge Me by My Size, Do You?”

“And, well, you should not,” in the words of Yoda. Now that you know what a yottabyte looks like, let’s look at how much data storage Backblaze has under management.

Way back in 2010, we passed 10 petabytes of cloud backup data under management. It was a big deal at the time and we celebrated it on our blog. We made an infographic about it and thus began our infographic journey into the world of big numbers.

10 Petabytes Visualized

In 2012, we passed 75 petabytes and visualized the data as an iTunes gift card, as one does in 2012…

iTunes Card

Just five months after that, we passed 100 petabytes and compared it to Mt. Shasta…

Mt. Shasta

We were really on a roll—150 petabytes in early 2015, 200 before the end of that year. The storage was accelerating, and we couldn’t mark every milestone with a cool visual. That was, until we hit one exabyte in 2020.

How Big is an Exabyte?

And it hasn’t slowed down since then. Today, we have over two exabytes of data storage under management. We’re nowhere near a yottabyte yet, but like Yoda says, “Patience, you must have.”

Two exabytes today. A yottabyte tomorrow. Maybe? Someday? Either way, you know we’ll be there with a handy infographic whenever the day comes.

The post What Is a Yottabyte? appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Learn About Women in History With Us!

Post Syndicated from Lora Maslenitsyna original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/learn-about-women-in-history-with-us/

March was Women’s History Month, and throughout the month, Backblaze’s employee-led, internal Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) committee educated our team on the contributions of women throughout history. In a company-wide Slack channel, DEI committee leaders shared facts and resources about women who were pioneers in a range of fields.

Many of our team members found these facts useful to inform and expand their own worldviews. Team members shared articles they found themselves, and some even used the content as part of their homeschooling curriculum. (As a bonus, the DEI Committee also surveyed employees to generate a word cloud that describes the women of Backblaze, which you can see in the image above.)

The initiative was so popular with our team, we thought we would share some of the content with you even though we are well on our way into April, because any day is a good day to recognize the diverse range of women who have made contributions to our everyday lives, whether it’s still Women’s History Month or not.

Keep reading to learn about important figures and events in the history of technology, Hollywood, politics, and more!

Women in History

In 1756, long before the women’s suffrage movement gained any traction, Lydia Chapin Taft was legally allowed to vote.
Lydia Chapin Taft’s husband, Josiah Taft, was a prominent member of their community in Uxbridge, Massachusetts; he served several terms as a legislator and presided over town hall meetings. When he died, the townspeople agreed to permit Lydia Chapin Taft to vote in her husband’s place. The decision was made in keeping with the slogan of “no taxation without representation,” since Josiah Taft was the town’s largest taxpayer. Lydia Chapin Taft went on to cast several more votes, contributing to the town’s stance on important matters like financial contribution to the French and Indian War.
Read more about Lydia Chapin Taft here.

The 1900s brought significant milestones for women and money in the United States.
In 1938, the federal minimum wage was established as a result of the passage of the Fair Labor Standards Act, eliminating many pay differences between men and women for hourly jobs. In the 1960s, women gained the right to open a bank account. Shortly after, in 1974, the Equal Credit Opportunity Act passed, which aimed to prohibit credit discrimination on the basis of gender. Before it passed, many banks granted credit cards to women only with their husbands’ signatures and outright refused to issue them to unmarried women.
Read more about economic rights for women in the U.S. here.

Wyoming refused to join the United States without a guarantee that women would be allowed to vote.
In 1869, the territory of Wyoming made history when it passed a law granting women aged 21 and older the right to vote. That law was threatened two decades later when Wyoming applied for statehood. Congress stated that it wouldn’t allow the territory to join the Union unless women were disenfranchised. Wyoming called Congress out on its bluff, replying via telegram, “We will remain out of the Union one hundred years rather than come in without the women.” Congress relented and Wyoming became a state in 1890, with women’s right to vote intact. True to its past, Wyoming’s state motto today is simply, “Equal Rights.”
Read more about Wyoming and women’s right to vote here.

Source: Jet City Comics/Joao Vieira.

The British suffragettes learned jiujitsu to defend themselves and evade arrest.
Campaigning for women’s enfranchisement was a dangerous act back in the early 20th century. Many suffragettes in the UK were incarcerated, and some were even force fed in jail as punishment for their self-imposed hunger strikes. To protect women from going to jail and facing this abuse, which could have disastrous health consequences, one suffragette had the bright idea to teach her fellow protesters jiujitsu. Edith Margaret Garrud used her martial arts background to secretly train a unit of 30 members of the Women’s Social and Political Union in self defense. The group was alternately known as “The Bodyguard” and “The Amazons,” and was highly effective at resisting arrest.
Read more about how suffragettes in the UK used martial arts to defend themselves here.

Arabella Mansfield became the first female lawyer in the United States in 1869.
Admitted to the Iowa bar, Mansfield made her career as a college educator and administrator. Despite an Iowa state law restricting the bar exam to males, Mansfield had taken it and earned high scores. Shortly after her court challenge, Iowa amended its licensing statute and became the first state to accept women and minorities into its bar.
Read more about Arabella Mansfield here.

In 1964, Patsy Mink became the first woman of color elected to the U.S. House of Representatives.
Mink’s Congressional career spanned decades (1964–1977; 1990–2002). She was a key author for Title IX, a law that advanced gender equity within federal funding policies for education. This law was later renamed the Patsy T. Mink Equal Opportunity in Education Act in her honor.
Read more about Patsy Mink here.

No list of formidable Irish women would be complete without tomboy icon Gráinne Ní Mháille, aka Grace O’Malley, the notorious “Pirate Queen” of western Ireland.
Born on Clare Island in 1530, O’Malley famously cut off her hair after her father refused to take her on a voyage in case her locks got caught in the ropes. In her prime, O’Malley commanded three galleys, 20 ships, and over 200 men against her perpetual nemesis—the English—and even met with Elizabeth I before living to the ripe old age of 73.
Find out more about Grace O’Malley here.

Cork, Ireland native Annie Moore became the first immigrant to be processed through the newly-opened Ellis Island in New York on January 1, 1892.
Just 17 years old at the time, Moore looked after her two brothers on the ship voyage from Ireland to America, before going on to have 11 children of her own with German Catholic salesman Joseph Augustus Schayer. Moore died in 1924. Her previously unmarked grave was identified over eight decades later in 2006, and a Celtic Cross made from Irish Blue Limestone was later unveiled at her final resting place.
You can read more about Annie Moore here.

Source: Chicago Tribune.

Tammy Duckworth, the Illinois senator and retired National Guard lieutenant colonel, is responsible for an impressive list of firsts.
Duckworth is the first Congress member to be born in Thailand, the first to give birth while in office, the first Asian-American woman to represent Illinois in Congress, and the first woman with a disability to be elected to Congress. She lost both of her legs following a helicopter attack in the Iraq War. “People always want me to hide it in pictures,” she told Vogue in 2018. “I say no! I earned this wheelchair. It’s no different from a medal I wear on my chest. Why would I hide it?”
Find out more about her here.

In 1985, Wilma Mankiller became the first woman to be Principal Chief of the Cherokee Nation, leading the largest tribe in the United States.
During Mankiller’s decade-long chiefdom from 1985 to 1995, “tribal enrollment grew, infant mortality dropped, and employment rates doubled,” according to Time. In 1998, she was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by Bill Clinton.
Learn more about Wilma Mankiller here.

Women in Art

Toshiko Takaezu was a trailblazer in ceramic art making during the 1970s.
Takaezu is best known for creating large, closed-vessel sculptures. At the time, fellow artists expressed shock that a woman could make such large pieces, some taller than the artist herself. Takaezu merged aspects of Japanese tea ceremony, calligraphy, and American Abstract Expressionism to create a new style from these diverse art traditions. She had a long career as an artist and teacher at the Cleveland Institute of Art and Princeton University.
Learn more about Toshiko Takaezu here.

Emily Kauʻiomakaweliokauaionalaniokamanookalanipo Kukahiwa Zuttermeister, also known as Aunty Kauʻi, is a revered Kumu Hula (master hula teacher) from Hawaiʻi.
Zuttermeister trained in the hula pahu tradition of Samuel Pua Haʻaheo before becoming a teacher in 1935. Zuttermeister helped revitalize ʻŌlelo Hawaiʻi (the Hawaiian language) and culture by teaching hula. She was part of a community of leaders who raised awareness about hula as a storytelling art form created by the Hawaiian people to recall and share their knowledge.
Learn more about her here.

No one did sultry better than Anna May Wong.
The Los Angeles-born screen siren landed her breakthrough role at age 17 in 1922’s “The Toll of the Sea.” Wong was also quite the trend setter—in 1934, the Mayfair Mannequin Society of New York voted her the “world’s best-dressed woman,” a massive fashion world honor at the time. Success in Hollywood came, but certainly not equal to her talent. As her Turner Classic Movie biography sums it up, stateside audiences considered Wong either “too Chinese” or “too American.” In Europe, the actress received a wider range of roles and due critical acclaim.
Learn more about Anna May Wong here.

Best known as the frontwoman of 4 Non Blondes, Linda Perry’s prolific behind-the-scenes work—as both a songwriter and producer—helped define modern pop music.
Perry worked on hit songs with P!nk, Christina Aguilera, and Alicia Keys. While a woman has never won a Grammy for Producer of the Year (Non-classical), in 2019, Perry received a nomination for the award from the Recording Academy. The singer-songwriter is one of a handful of women to achieve success in production and with her own music.
Learn more about Linda Perry here.

Delia Derbyshire was an innovator in electronic music who pushed the boundaries of technology and composition.
Derbyshire is most well-known for her electronic arrangement of the theme for “Doctor Who,” an important example of Musique Concrète. Each note was individually crafted by cutting, splicing, and stretching, or compressing, segments of analogue tape which contained recordings of a plucked string, oscillators, and white noise.
Learn more about Delia Derbyshire here.

During a two-decade career that began in the mid-1960s, Sonia Pottinger held the distinction of being Jamaica’s first female record producer.
Cutting tracks with the likes of Joe White & Chuck and Culture, her production spanned a variety of Jamaican genres, from rock-steady to ska to reggae.
Read more about Sonia Pottinger here.

Geena Davis starred in two movies about female empowerment: “Thelma & Louise” and “A League of Their Own.”
As Davis got older, she realized how unempowered women were in Hollywood. In 2004, she founded the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media to collect data comparing the number and types of male and female roles and to use that data to convince the industry of the need for change.
Listen to her speak about her career here.

Rita Moreno has influenced the entertainment industry for over 70 years as an actress, singer, and dancer.
Moreno became the first Latine woman to earn the vaunted EGOT: an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony. In 2004, she was honored with the Presidential Medal of Freedom for her many contributions to the arts.
Learn more about Rita Moreno here.

Women in Technology

Hedy Lamarr was much more than “the most beautiful woman in the world” during Hollywood’s Golden Age.
The Austrian-American actress was also a mathematically-minded inventor who learned about military technology from dinner party conversations between her arms-manufacturer husband and Nazi German generals, before escaping to America where she eventually invented a new torpedo guidance system for the U.S. Navy.
Read more about Hedy Lamarr’s inventions here.

Source: “The Legacy of Grace Hopper.”

Rear Admiral Grace Brewster Murray Hopper was a STEM pioneer.
Grace Brewster Murray Hopper brought the research and career interests of women in computing to the forefront. The history of computer hardware invention is mostly a male-oriented affair. This isn’t unexpected given that early computers had more to do with heavy engineering than logic. However, when it comes to software, the picture is a little different. Hopper was responsible not only for the development of the Cobol language, but also for continuous advocacy within the industry to make computers and computing more accessible.
Find out more about Grace Hopper here.

Ada, Countess of Lovelace was born 200 years ago, but her name lives on.
There is often an unfairness in the reporting of the history of computing. The software people are nearly always passed over in preference for the hardware people. Ada, Countess of Lovelace worked with Charles Babbage on his Analytical Engine and is generally accepted as the first programmer. Later, in the 1970s, the Ada language was named in recognition of her status as the first computer programmer. In 2009, Ada Lovelace Day was inaugurated to celebrate the achievements of women in science, technology, engineering, and math.
Read more about her here.

In 1996, after being named a mission specialist on the Space Shuttle Columbia by NASA, Kalpana Chawla became the first woman of Indian descent to fly in space.
The shuttle orbited around earth 252 times in a little over two weeks. Chawla’s second—and last—trip to space came in 2003 when she and six other astronauts completed more than 80 experiments over the course of 16 days. She and the entire crew died when the ship disintegrated upon reentering the Earth’s atmosphere. In 2020, Northrop Grumman named a spacecraft after Chawla in her memory.
Read more about her here.

Share More Information on Women in History

Did you learn something new that you didn’t know before? Or, do you have a fact to share about a woman in history? Comment below and help us expand this list!

The post Learn About Women in History With Us! appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

We’re Turning 15 Today!

Post Syndicated from Backblaze original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/were-turning-15-today/

Who doesn’t like birthdays? We definitely do. And we usually celebrate ours on the Backblaze Blog because they’re fun, and we like reminiscing about the time we passed 10 petabytes of data under management and how cute exciting that was (we now have over two exabytes of data storage under management, for context).

But this past year, well, things have been busy! And the last few months have been busier still. Honestly, our 15th anniversary almost slipped right by us. But, we couldn’t let such a milestone go by without marking it somehow.

Today, we thought we’d take a brief look back on our beginnings and where we are now as a public company—a little “how it started/how it’s going” retrospective to celebrate our coming of age—not to pat ourselves on the back, but to celebrate the ways our team and business have grown, especially over the past year.

How It Started

One of the things we’re most proud of is the incredible team we’ve built. Before we founded Backblaze, the five founders and two demi-founders had worked together for 20 years. So, we knew the kind of company we wanted to create when we sat down to hash out what Backblaze would be—a company that’s equally fair and good for its customers, partners, employees, investors, and the greater community.

Five co-founders; two demi-founders; 1,200 square feet; one white board; innumerable Post-Its.

The team today is a lot bigger than it once was (270+ and counting!), but when we started Backblaze, we wanted to create a culture, both internally and externally, of people who cared about each other, cared about their work, and cared about our product. We knew building that kind of culture would lead us authentically to where we are today, and we fiercely protected it. According to a few sources, we’re still doing well on that count.

How It’s Going

So, what have we been up to recently? Thus far in 2022:

  • We launched Universal Data Migration, a new service that covers all data transfer costs, including legacy provider egress fees, and manages data migration from any legacy on-premises or cloud source.
  • We enhanced our partner program with two new offerings (in addition to Universal Data Migration, which partners can also take advantage of):
    • Backblaze B2 Reserve: A predictable, capacity pricing model to empower our Channel Partners.
    • Backblaze Partner API: A new API that empowers our Alliance Partners to easily integrate and manage B2 Cloud Storage within their products and platforms.
  • We announced new partnerships with:
    • CTERA: An enterprise file services platform that extends the capabilities of traditional NAS and file servers to the cloud.
    • Catalogic: An enterprise and Kubernetes data protection solution.
    • Kasten by Veeam: A Kubernetes backup and application mobility solution.

And just a few weeks before 2021 came to a close: We went public on Nasdaq under BLZE.

Blazing it in Times Square.

As much as we’d like to reflect* on more of the great things that happened in our past, we’re more interested in keeping our heads down, working away at what’s next. Stay tuned for the next 15 years.


*If you ARE interested in celebrating some past milestones with us, we put together this nifty chart of some other key milestones that happened between our founding date, 4/20/2007 (yes yes, we were founded on 4/20 with a CEO whose name is Budman, we’ve heard it all before) and when we went public. We thought we’d share it here (obviously we can’t help ourselves, we really do love reminiscing).

Click to enlarge.

The post We’re Turning 15 Today! appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Share Conversion and Founder Selling Plan

Post Syndicated from Brian Wilson original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/share-conversion-and-founder-selling-plan/

Over the past 15 years, Backblaze has established a track record of transparency by sharing everything we can about our work, from publishing our Drive Stats to exploring how we grew our business. After becoming a publicly traded company this past November, we now have a whole new set of opportunities to maintain our commitment to transparency.

Today, I wanted to share in-depth information about a few things we just did and plan to do: In short, the Backblaze founders converted some of our company shares to make them available for sale via 10b5-1 automatic trading plans that were adopted back in February. These plans arrange for automatic sales to occur each trading day over the next 12 months. Importantly, the founders have aligned to each sell the same number of shares and, following the sales from these 10b5-1 plans, would each still hold over 80% of their current shares and jointly continue to hold the majority of the voting control. (If you’re not familiar with some of those terms or concepts, don’t worry, they’re new to many of us, too. We’ll explain in greater detail below.)

Why share this information today? Partially because we’re required to in other channels: When management converts shares from Class B to Class A, a Form 4 must be filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). These filings are then typically picked up by financial reporting bots and further shared across financial media to inform shareholders.

But what we are sharing here goes beyond the SEC requirements. We’re doing so because of our commitment to transparency and to provide an easier to grasp (hopefully) explanation of the news.

The Details:

  • The five original founders have aligned to convert an equal, limited portion of their Class B shares of Backblaze stock to Class A shares. Class B shares at Backblaze provide greater voting power and are held by every person who held stock or stock options pre-IPO. However class B shares cannot be sold on the market, which is why they need to be converted to Class A in order to execute stock sales.
  • We are converting these shares for future sale under our 10b5-1 plans. 10b5-1 plans are a standard approach for any employee at a publicly traded company who is considered an “insider” to sell shares while avoiding many of the risks related to insider trading. It’s a set-it-and-forget-it plan you put into action and then pretty much leave alone. The plans schedule share sales at set intervals and times regardless of market fluctuations or business news. We implemented these plans in late February 2022, during the Company’s open trading window, and the sales will likely begin May 10, 2022, when the IPO lockup period expires.
  • Each founder’s 10b5-1 plan is set up to sell 2,000 shares every trading day for approximately 12 months. Here, too, the founders have aligned to each sell the same number of their shares every day—I’ll explain why a little later.

What Does This Mean?

When the sales under the 10b5-1 plans are summed up at the end of the 12 month period, this should be a relatively minor transaction. But we’re aware of the potential perception of founding members selling shares, so we wanted to explain our motivations and their implications more plainly here:

  1. We intend to sell only a small portion of our holdings over the next year and therefore remain significant holders of Backblaze shares after these sales are complete.
  2. We continue to have a positive long-term outlook for the company. Simply put: As founders, we invested a lot in Backblaze almost 15 years ago (when we founded the business in 2007 we contributed both money and time, working without salaries and then for very low pay in the early years) and we’d like to square up some of that investment. This is an opportunity for us to recoup some of our original inputs while also diversifying our finances in a way that feels balanced to us. More on that last thought in the next bullet:
  3. Because we’re invested in the long term success of the business and the mutual success of our investors, we’ve structured our 10b5-1 selling plans to minimize price impact through low volume, daily sales. We’ve aligned our sales as a founding team to achieve this approach, even though it could make for less financial upside for us.
  4. Some readers might wonder why we are selling equal amounts. While there might be a few of you who read our S-1 in full, we understand that ~200 pages is a little long and you may have missed our explanation of the founders’ salary tontine. It’s so well-written though, I’ll just quote it here:
     
    “Early on, we grew our team by hiring co-workers from previous companies who we trusted with what we consider to be our lives and livelihood—our customers’ data… Most of us went entirely without salary for more than a year in order to spend all of Backblaze’s resources building products our customers would love. In the spirit of that original bond, we formed a salary tontine where, until the public offering is finalized, a core group of the original founders and some other very early employees agreed to make the same salary. This solidarity helped us build and sustain our culture through the first 14 years of our evolution.”
     
    The spirit that formed that original understanding—which included equivalent stock ownership among the founders—has persisted beyond the IPO and continues to inform the founders’ treatment of compensation and stock sales. That is why we’re selling equal amounts.
  5. Other readers might wonder if we are trying to “time the market.” No. We created very simple 10b5-1 plans in late February. The plans begin when the IPO lockup expires and stretch into mid-2023. Thus, this has nothing to do with the stock price today or any attempt to try to “time the market.”

From the outside, SEC regulations and financial mechanisms can seem overly complicated and, when read in regulatory filings, somewhat gloomy. But the story here is simple: The other founders and I remain committed to the long-term success of Backblaze. We would also like to realize some of our very long-term investment as we do so. Hopefully the information we’ve shared here helps clarify the picture for you.

If you’d like to dig deeper, you can always access our company filings at https://ir.backblaze.com or in the EDGAR filings database on the SEC website, sec.gov. If you’re an investor and you’d like to ask any questions about the information above or any other topics, you can submit questions about our next earnings beginning one week prior to our call; watch for a forthcoming press release on this topic.

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Aid for Ukrainians

Post Syndicated from Backblaze original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/aid-for-ukrainians/

Along with the rest of the world, the team at Backblaze is extremely saddened by the humanitarian crisis in Ukraine. To help both the people of Ukraine and our customers who call it home, we are taking three steps:

  1. For our customers in Ukraine, we will be waiving charges for Backblaze services including Computer Backup license charges and B2 Cloud Storage charges until June 1, 2022.
  2. For the people of Ukraine, we are making a monetary donation to Project Hope and United Help Ukraine.
  3. We are promoting these charities to our employees in our philanthropy center, where we will also match their donations.

We share this commitment here in the hopes that it will encourage others to do what they can to help the people of Ukraine.

We hope for a swift and peaceful resolution to this situation. To our customers and the people of Ukraine: We sincerely hope that you and your friends and loved ones can stay healthy and safe.

The post Aid for Ukrainians appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Building a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace: Our Learnings and Goals

Post Syndicated from Natalie Cook original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/building-a-diverse-and-inclusive-workplace-our-learnings-and-goals/

Backblaze started in a one-bedroom apartment in Palo Alto, California. Today, our products serve customers in more than 175 countries and are available in 11 languages. This would not have been possible without the diversity in culture, perspectives, and experiences within our team. Diversity has helped us understand the needs and expectations of the different markets we’re selling to. As a result of our diversity, we’ve come up with new features, solved interesting problems in an innovative way, and connected with our customers all around the world.

Today, we are sharing some stories of how diversity has helped our business throughout the years as well as our efforts to make our workplace more diverse and inclusive. We know we still have a lot to learn. Our initiatives are always evolving and changing as we strive to foster a diverse environment, and we hope that by sharing these stories we can do our part to promote diversity and inclusion more broadly.

How Diversity Helped Our Business

Building the Storage Pod Was an International Effort

Every true Backblaze fan knows that we built our own Storage Pods. After all, our blog post about how to build cheap cloud storage is one of our most popular posts. What fans may not know is that our staff’s bilingual skills are what helped us make our own Storage Pods. When the founders opened up the disk port multipliers they had just bought, they noticed there was a board inside with the name of the manufacturer: Chyang Fun Industry (CFI Group). This was a Taiwanese company, and they only spoke Mandarin. One of our founders, Billy Ng, spoke to them in Mandarin and explained that we needed 150 boards. These boards were essential pieces to building our Storage Pods.

Not only was Billy able to speak to the manufacturer in their native language, but he also knew the cultural standards so he was aware of what was culturally appropriate. After that initial sale, Backblaze continued to have a great relationship with CFI Group. Over the years, they continued to sell us boards which we used to make our Storage Pods. Brian Wilson, our chief technology officer, said, “Without Billy’s bilingual skills, the company would not have survived because we could not have survived without the Storage Pods.” As a result of Billy’s bilingual skills and bicultural understanding, we were able to build our own Storage Pods and store data from customers all around the world.

Translating the Product Into 11 Languages

Since we are an international company, our products and website are available in 11 languages. When the language features were initially created, our developers internationalized the product/website using Google Translate. However, they quickly realized these translations were not completely accurate. Backblaze then hired an external localization firm, but they were a bit pricey for us at the time—we were still a small, bootstrapped startup. We then looked internally and realized there were employees who were bilingual and even multilingual. These employees began reviewing the translations and fixing any errors. They even roped in friends and family to help with the translations. As a result of our diverse staff, we were able to fix the translations internally rather than spend tens of thousands of dollars on hiring an external localization firm.

Creating a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace

Photo by fauxels from Pexels.

Diversity and inclusion have always been valued at Backblaze. More than half of our founders were born in a country outside the U.S. (Fun fact: some of those countries don’t even exist anymore!) They collectively practice five different religions and speak various languages. Their diverse backgrounds have helped them build the company that Backblaze is today.

In the past year and a half, we’ve made a conscious effort to reinforce and further our commitment to diversity through a number of initiatives. We established a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Committee made up of staff members from many different teams across the organization who are passionate about creating a safe and diverse workplace for their peers. Of their many initiatives, two we’re highlighting today include our hiring efforts and our inclusivity efforts.

Building Diversity in Hiring

The DEI Committee approached diversity in hiring by building out an internship program, which allowed us to bring on interns at various levels who come from different ethnicities, genders, socioeconomic statuses, etc. As a result of the program, we brought on some of the interns full-time, and we are excited to see them grow their careers at Backblaze!

In addition to the internship program, we’ve also worked with a variety of organizations that help bridge the gap between tech companies and underrepresented talent. These organizations have also provided internal training sessions which contributed to creating a safe and welcoming environment and continuing our positive retention rate.

Fostering a Safe and Inclusive Environment

We realize that it’s not only important to hire diverse employees, but to also create an inclusive and safe environment that supports these team members. The DEI Committee often hosts training sessions such as implicit bias training and gender inclusion training for employees, managers, Human Resources, and executive staff. The DEI Committee also hosts events like virtual panel discussions and movie nights to elevate social justice issues. These events lead to conversations afterward where employees engage in thoughtful discussions about the event, diversity, and social justice.

How Diversity and Inclusion Support a Strong Company Culture

Photo by fauxels from Pexels.

By creating a diverse and inclusive environment, we are enhancing our company culture and reducing employee turnover. According to Gallup, U.S. businesses lose around $3 trillion every year due to employee turnover. As a result of our company culture where we value diversity and employees treat one another with respect, we have a very low attrition rate. Check out our Glassdoor reviews to get a glimpse into our culture!

We’re Always Learning

We understand that as an organization, we still have more to learn. We’re continuously looking for more opportunities to educate our employees and leadership team, whether that be through diversity training sessions or having more open conversations about difficult topics. We’re also listening to our employees and looking into how we can continue to build a workforce that encourages and strengthens our diversity.

We don’t have all the answers yet, but as an organization that encourages learning and development, we are continually refining our approach to diversity and inclusion in the workplace. We look forward to sharing future learnings and using our platform to continue to promote these values to other organizations.

Join Our Team!

We are excited to continue our efforts to make Backblaze a diverse and inclusive environment! If you’d like to join our team, you can check out our careers here. If you don’t see a role you’re looking for, feel free to email jobscontact@backblaze.com. We look forward to hearing from you!

The post Building a Diverse and Inclusive Workplace: Our Learnings and Goals appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

2021 and Beyond: Backblaze’s Predictions for the Coming Year

Post Syndicated from Jeremy Milk original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/2021-and-beyond-backblazes-predictions-for-the-coming-year/

The cloud computing industry had a big year in 2021. But the past year also saw significant challenges—supply chain shortages, continued shifts in work life, continued natural disasters, and disruptive ransomware attacks, not to mention an ongoing global pandemic.

As we close out 2021 and look forward to the new year, we asked our team to weigh in on their predictions for trends we’ll see in 2022 in the cloud computing industry. Here are our collective thoughts.

The Trends That 2022 Will Bring

1. Security Will Never Be Easier to Justify

Ransomware threats soared in 2021, making big headlines throughout the year. As we finished the year with the internet-wide Log4j vulnerability becoming exposed, the argument for investing in data security has never been easier to make, and the whole C-suite is likely to be involved. Companies will invest more in stronger protections against ransomware including shoring up backup practices and implementing features like Object Lock to protect data. While companies may have relied upon cyber insurance in the past to cover ransom payments rather than investing in proactive data protection, we think added pressure from government agencies will make this option less of a fallback (while also helping IT leaders to justify more robust measures).

2. Enhanced Security May Not Be a Choice

The U.S. government has already started to signal that it’s expecting companies to do more to protect their data from ransomware exposure. In 2022, expect it to tighten the screws all the more with greater enforcement of Treasury, TSA, and other requirements. We predict that at least one U.S. company that makes a big ransomware payment will find itself squarely in the crosshairs of the U.S. government for not doing enough to protect itself and then going too far against the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control in facilitating payment to known bad actors outside the U.S.

3. Relying on One Cloud Provider Will No Longer Cut It

Companies that currently rely on a single diversified cloud provider will increasingly look to independent providers to achieve data redundancy. After recent AWS outages that exposed single points of failure, this has never been clearer. Backing up data that resides in the cloud will become more of a priority. The move to a more diversified cloud deployment will lead to more organizations considering flipping to an independent cloud provider as their primary data store with one of the traditional diversified providers serving as a backup destination. Of course, a multi-cloud deployment won’t solve everything and could create more complexity if your primary cloud isn’t dialed in before racing to add a second.

4. HAMR/MAMR Drops

Hard disk drive manufacturers have all made announcements about capacity increases for the coming year, getting ever closer to 30TB drives. At the 5th Annual Virtual Wells Fargo TMT Summit Conference, Western Digital CEO David Goeckeler indicated that 30TB hard drives are within reach with its ePMR and OptiNAND technology as well as a 10-platter HDD (up from the existing nine-platter 20TB drive). Goeckeler referred to the development as “That staircase to take you to 30TB and then get you on the HAMR [heat assisted magnetic recording] curve.”

Likewise, SDK announced the development of microwave assisted magnetic recording (MAMR) technology this year to support development of a 30TB drive. Seagate, too, continues to pursue development of HAMR technology, announcing development of a second-gen HAMR drive that could reach 30TB. The technology has been on the cusp of commercialization for a number of years—in fact, we wrongly predicted we would start seeing HAMR/MAMR drives in 2019. Let’s try again—2022 will be the year that HAMR and/or MAMR drives will hit the mainstream and will end up in our data centers as well. We do think 30TB drives built on any technology are at least a couple of years away, but it’s time for HAMR and MAMR to meet the data storage requirements of the future.

5. Supply Chain Traffic Jams Will Continue

Supply chains across all industries are experiencing massive limitations while demand continues to increase. Even when the kinks in the hose get worked out, transportation logistics will still choke supply at points. This is exacerbated by the pandemic, but we think it will be an ongoing issue as more organizations rely on supply for growth and business continuity.

In 2022, companies will accelerate the swing from what had been smart just-in-time supply chain management minimizing inventory to smart just-in-case supply chain management minimizing service and sales disruptions.

6. Microservices Will Kill Egress Fees

Better API-connected solutions will allow companies to avoid vendor lock-in and create flexible microservices-based applications while meeting their cloud-related needs (storage, compute, CDN, etc.). Companies will require lower egress fees to be able to move their data freely without breaking the bank. As independent cloud providers work together to minimize or completely eliminate egress fees, we predict that in 2022, smart companies will demand better from the likes of Amazon, Google, and Microsoft—lower egress, multi-cloud options, and vendor independence. Imagine the incremental innovation when companies need not sweat downloading and distributing their own data!

7. A Push for Interoperability

Unstructured data continues to grow unabated driven by our increasingly connected world. Some estimate it comprises 80% to 90% of the world’s data, and today it lives in multiple places—multiple clouds, on-premises data centers, and on the edge. Companies that want to extract the most value out of this data won’t stand for cloud providers who put up walls around their ecosystems. Data must easily flow between environments such that where the data lives becomes an afterthought. Savvy businesses will want to leverage providers interchangeably based on the best fit for their workloads, and those with open ecosystems will be favored for their flexibility.

What Do You Think the New Year Will Bring?

With another year upon us, we’re wondering… What are your predictions for 2022? Let us know in the comments.

Wishing you a happy and hopeful New Year!

The post 2021 and Beyond: Backblaze’s Predictions for the Coming Year appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Our Response to the Log4j Vulnerability

Post Syndicated from Mark Potter original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/our-response-to-the-log4j-vulnerability/

When the director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Agency calls a vulnerability “one of the most serious I’ve seen in my entire career, if not the most serious,” ears perk up.

The director was referring to the Apache Log4j vulnerability that was discovered this month. Some more colorful phrases used to describe the Log4j incident include: “a grave threat,” “a design failure of catastrophic proportions,” something that will “haunt the internet for years.”

The vulnerability proceeded to set off five-alarm fires in IT, security, and operations departments around the world. Or should have, at least. Researchers estimate at least 840,000 attacks have since been launched via the vulnerability since it was discovered. That is to say, if you’re using a software or cloud vendor that hasn’t made some kind of statement or taken corrective action, you should be asking them why not.

At Backblaze, we made the decision to take our servers temporarily offline in order to hunt down potential threats, apply the appropriate security patches, and test those patches to help prevent our systems from being compromised. This post explains why we made the decision, outlines the actions we took to meet our objective of securing customer data as well as our environment, and provides more insight into our process.

What Is the Log4j Vulnerability?

As reported by ArsTechnica, a zero-day vulnerability was discovered in the Apache Log4j logging library that enables attackers to take control of vulnerable servers. Though it may not be an immediately recognizable name, Log4j is widely used throughout the world by companies like Apple, Twitter, and Tesla as well as the game Minecraft. The library allows developers to easily log application events. The Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) urged users to apply patches immediately to address the vulnerabilities.

Our Decision

Upon learning of the Log4j vulnerability, our team took swift action to investigate and assess available options to address the potential impacts since Log4j is leveraged widely in our environment. As part of our investigation, our internal team used a nondestructive form of the exploit to confirm our vulnerability. We also noted close to 80,000 unsuccessful Log4j exploit attempts on our sites in a 12-hour period. The level of activity, along with our success using the exploit (albeit with internal knowledge of our own systems), was very concerning to us.

Although we were not aware of any unauthorized access to our systems due to the Log4j vulnerability, out of an abundance of caution, we decided it was in our customers’ best interest to take systems offline until they could be patched. The decision to take our systems offline was not one we took lightly. However, our Incident Management Guidelines are quite clear. In a crisis where tradeoffs must be made, our descending list of priorities (all of which are very important to us) is as follows:

  1. Health & Safety.
  2. Data Integrity & Confidentiality.
  3. Service Availability.
  4. Service Performance.

Protecting customer data integrity is second only to health and safety and above service availability. That said, the decision to temporarily bring all services down was unprecedented in the 14-year history of Backblaze. This was an extraordinary case where we made a decision to take a necessary action to address an imminent risk of a vulnerability with a Common Vulnerability Scoring System (CVSS) score of 10.0—the highest possible score. We believe that we needed to take preventative steps to protect customer data by temporarily taking our services offline until the security patching process was complete.

What Actions Have We Taken?

A recap of recent actions is outlined below:

  • Upon learning of the Log4j vulnerability, our Security team took immediate action to investigate.
  • Based on our assessment of the potential threat, we decided to temporarily take our services offline to apply a security patch to prevent our systems from potentially being compromised.
  • We announced our systems had been taken offline at 5:20 p.m. PT on December 10, 2021.*
  • We announced our systems were back online and functioning normally at 3:01 a.m. PT on December 11, 2021.
  • Based on our investigation, we also determined that there was no evidence of our systems being compromised or unauthorized access to customer data or files due to the Log4j vulnerability.

*We decided not to announce downtime publicly until after our systems were offline to avoid any elevation of priority to those targeting our services. Accordingly, we did not make a public announcement until after the servers were disconnected.

Was Backblaze Compromised?

We have not found any evidence of system compromise or unauthorized access to customer data or files at this time.

Next Steps

As is part of our incident response process, we always look for ways to do better and identify areas for improvement. In this case, two top priorities moving forward would be to improve how we can apply security patches faster and reduce downtime.

Thank you to our customers for your understanding as we navigated this challenging incident.

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System Maintenance Update: Log4j Vulnerability

Post Syndicated from Backblaze original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/system-maintenance-update-log4j-vulnerability/

As you may be aware, a vulnerability was publicly announced recently relating to Log4j, a common logging library widely used by companies around the world.

Our first priority was to make sure our customers’ data is protected and our environment is secure. So, when we learned of this vulnerability affecting Apache Log4j, our security, technical operations, and engineering teams quickly pulled together to establish a protocol for achieving our primary directive.

What is the Log4j vulnerability?
As reported by ArsTechnica, a zero-day vulnerability was discovered in the Apache Log4j logging library that enables attackers to take control of vulnerable servers. Log4j is widely used, by everything from Minecraft to iCloud to the National Security Administration, and the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) urged users to apply patches immediately to address the vulnerabilities.

What actions have we taken?
On Friday, December 10 at approximately 4:30pm PT, Backblaze took services offline in order to protect customer data and roll out security patches across all our systems to address the vulnerability.

12/11/2021 1:05am PT update: Systems are coming back online. While our teams work diligently to bring everything up, you may experience continued service disruptions. Thank you for your patience.

12/11/2021 02:58am PT update: Systems are back online and functioning normally. If you are experiencing any problems, please reach out to our Support Team: https://help.backblaze.com/hc/en-us/requests/new.

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Backblaze Holiday Gift Guide 2021

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-holiday-gift-guide-2021/

The holiday season is upon us, and here at Backblaze, we always love to see what cool, new things are out there for us to give to our friends and family. Every year, we ask our team members what gifts they’ll be giving (or treating themselves to) and share their ideas on our blog.

This year, our team’s gift ideas range from the latest in fitness trackers for the person who’s always on the go, to weighted blankets that keep you cozy, and helpful plant-rearing guides for blossoming green thumbs. Read on for some gift ideas that are sure to bring some holiday joy!

For Those Who Love Spending Time Outdoors

WHOOP

WHOOP is a fitness and health membership that offers a fitness tracker and an app that analyzes fitness, health, and sleep data as well as a way to connect with other WHOOP members. Their adjustable device can be worn with a range of garments or on their handy wristbands. And they’re stylish!

YETI Trailhead Camp Chair

Save yourself a seat wherever you are—the beach, the backyard, or the backcountry—with this lightweight camp chair.

ENO DoubleNest Printed Hammock

Don’t want to sit down after your hike? Lay down in this packable hammock instead!

Hidrate Spark 3 Smart Water Bottle

If you’re the type of person who needs to be reminded to drink water (me), this water bottle will glow when it’s time to hydrate. Luckily, it will not play obnoxious music.

And Those Who’d Rather Stay Home

Gravity Weighted Flannel Sherpa Blanket

Holiday season is also cozy season, and weighted blankets are arguably one of the best ways to enjoy it.

The New Plant Parent

If you or someone you know spent the early months of the pandemic transforming their home into a greenhouse (that also smelled of sourdough), this book provides all the houseplant tips and tricks they might need to keep their indoor garden thriving.

RENPHO Eye Massager

As many of us spend our days staring at screens that can strain our eyes over time, this eye massager is a great way to reduce tension and headaches. It even connects to your phone via Bluetooth so you can choose music to play as it works. Not to be confused with an
Oculus Quest 2.

TP-Link Kasa Smart Light Strip

Every kid will want one of these to decorate their room. You can light up your house with this multicolor light strip, which you can control from your phone.

For Your Foodie Friend

Anova Precision Cooker Pro

Treat the home chef in your life to this super precise and powerful sous vide tool that’s a fan favorite with over 100 million cooks.

Hot Ones 10 Pack Sauce Kit

Everything tastes better with hot sauce, and this kit includes the full lineup from season 16 of “Hot Ones.”

Koffie Inja

This small batch coffee roaster uses sustainable and ethically-sourced coffee beans and donates 20% of their proceeds to Muttville, a San Francisco-based senior dog rescue shelter.

Games and Game-related Accessories

Nintendo Game and Watch: The Legend of Zelda

Retro game fans will enjoy this collectible game and watch that includes three Legend of Zelda games.

Legendary Edition of Curse of Strahd

Strahd is a TTRPG favorite and this edition comes with bonus encounters, finger puppets, and lots more!

Glorious Modular Mechanical Keyboard

This is the world’s first RGB, modular mechanical keyboard. It’s easily customizable and needs no setup. For when you need your clanky keys to light up!

For the Practical Person

Wemo WiFi Smart Plug

This smart plug uses your home Wi-Fi connection to let you control plugged-in devices from your phone or tablet. Neat!

Tile Combo Pack

Have a friend or family member who’s constantly losing their keys or phone (or themselves)? Help them keep track of their items with this combo pack that works with Android or Apple devices.

Fuzzy Lined Crocs

Are they the most fashionable? Maybe not. But they might be the most comfortable, especially with the warm and fuzzy liner!

Give the Gift of Backblaze

Help your friends and family back up their data with Backblaze Computer Backup. They’ll thank you for helping make sure they never lose a file again.

Happy Gift-giving From Backblaze

We hope this gift guide has helped spark some ideas for your own holiday gift-giving! Comment below to tell us what gifts you’ll be giving your friends and family this year.

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Backblaze Is Now a Public Company

Post Syndicated from Gleb Budman original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-is-now-a-public-company/

Today is a big day for Backblaze—we became a public company listed on the Nasdaq Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol BLZE!

Before I explain what this means for us and for you, I want to give my thanks. Going public is an important milestone and one we couldn’t have accomplished without your support. Thank you.

Whether you have believed in us from the beginning and have been a customer for over a decade, or joined us yesterday; whether you entrust us to back up a single computer or to run your entire company’s infrastructure on the Backblaze Storage Cloud; whether you’ve partnered with us to bring our services to one individual or thousands of companies, whether you’re a first-time visitor to our site or you’ve been a reader all along: Thank you. We really appreciate you working with us and supporting us.

What Does Becoming a Public Company Mean for Backblaze?

It means we have more resources with IPO proceeds to increase investment in the development of our Storage Cloud platform and the B2 Cloud Storage and Computer Backup services that run on it.

The future is being built on independent cloud platforms, and ours has been 14 years in the making. Today, we take the next big step in being the leading independent cloud for data storage.

Additionally, while we help about 500,000 customers already, we plan to expand our sales and marketing efforts to bring Backblaze to more businesses, developers, and individuals that would benefit from easy and affordable data storage that they can trust.

Finally, we have built Backblaze with not only a focus on the products we provide, but with a deep care for what it is like to work here. With these proceeds, we plan to continue to significantly grow our team, and are looking for many more kind, smart, talented people to join us. (Is that you? We’re hiring!)

And Most Importantly, What Does It Mean for You?

My short answer is: It means more of the good things you’ve come to expect from us at Backblaze.

I want to emphasize that while we’ll be doing “more” for you, today’s events don’t mean that we’re “different” on any fundamental level. We’re still guided by the same principles and the same team. As a reminder, here’s the core of the values that we’ve been committed to since our founding (as written by Brian Wilson, Co-founder and CTO):

“At Backblaze, we want to provide a quality product for a fair price. We want to be honest and up front with our customers as to what we can and cannot do, and we want to be paid only the money honestly owed to us, and never engage in sleazy or misleading business practices where customers are misled in any way or pay for a service they do not receive. We are the ‘good guys,’ and we act like it.”

The only thing that’s changing today is we now have a more robust structure and additional funding to deliver on these values for more customers and partners.

If you’d like to share your thoughts, we’d love to hear from you in the comments section below. In the coming weeks, I’ll share more about where we started, why we decided to go public, how we did it, and more. Stay tuned and for now…

It’s Time to Blaze On!

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Backblaze Announces Launch of Initial Public Offering

Post Syndicated from Backblaze original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-announces-launch-of-initial-public-offering/

SAN MATEO—November 2, 2021. Backblaze, Inc. (“Backblaze”), a leading storage cloud platform, today announced that it has launched the roadshow for its initial public offering. Backblaze has filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) to offer 6,250,000 shares of its Class A common stock to the public. In addition, the underwriters will have a 30-day option to purchase up to an additional 937,500 shares of Class A common stock from Backblaze. The initial public offering price is expected to be between $15.00 and $17.00 per share. Backblaze has applied to list its Class A common stock on the Nasdaq Global Market under the ticker symbol “BLZE.”

Oppenheimer & Co., William Blair and Raymond James will act as lead book-running managers for the proposed offering, with JMP Securities and B. Riley Securities acting as joint book-running managers. Lake Street will act as co-manager for the proposed offering.

The offering will be made only by means of a prospectus. Copies of the preliminary prospectus related to the offering may be obtained, when available, from Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., Attention: Syndicate Prospectus Department, 85 Broad St., 26th Floor, New York, NY 10004, by telephone at (212) 667-8055, or by email at [email protected]; William Blair & Company, L.L.C. Attention: Prospectus Department, 150 North Riverside Plaza, Chicago, IL 60606, or by telephone at (800) 621-0687 or by email at [email protected]; or Raymond James & Associates, Inc., 880 Carillon Parkway, St. Petersburg, FL 33716, email: [email protected], telephone: 800-248-8863.

A registration statement relating to the proposed sale of these securities has been filed with the SEC but has not yet become effective. These securities may not be sold, nor may offers to buy be accepted, prior to the time the registration statement becomes effective. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation, or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.

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Who Ya Gonna Call? Backblaze

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/who-ya-gonna-call-backblaze/

Halloween and its surrounding spooky season is my favorite time of the year. As the Computer Backup Steward at Backblaze, I often read people’s notes to us, which detail how we’ve helped them recover their files. As I was thinking about their experiences and our past Halloween blog posts detailing spooky data loss stories (Truly, what’s scarier than data loss?), I recalled a personal story that happened to my sister a few years ago when she was interning here at Backblaze. It reminded me that Backblaze Computer Backup doesn’t just recover people’s data, but we also help access it in times of need—which can be equally important. Like the Ghostbusters, when there’s something strange in your (data’s) neighborhood, who ya gonna call? …Backblaze, it’s Backblaze. So, on this, the Friday before Halloween, let me recount that tiny spooky tale for you today…


A long time ago, my sister Lisa was an intern with us here at Backblaze. It was just for a month, but she helped us build desks, digitized business cards (The horror!), and generally helped out around the office while getting a feel for working at a Silicon Valley tech startup. Like any good startup techie, after joining us for the summer, she started using Backblaze to back up her computer files, which makes sense because as a 19-year-old—a lot can happen to your computer.

My sister and I are really close, and we try to go on little trips together whenever possible. One of these opportunities arose in the form of a road trip from the San Francisco Bay to Los Angeles to see a comedy show. (For those curious, it was Kevin Smith and Ralph Garman recording their “Hollywood Babble-On” podcast.)

Driving down from the Bay Area to Los Angeles takes about five to six hours, sometimes longer depending on the traffic and where you’re headed. As we passed hour four, my sister turned to me and said, ”Hey, do I need my ID for this?” Cue: creepy forewarning music.

Now, this comedy show was held, oddly enough, in a comedy club (this sometimes happens when comedy is involved). An important thing to know about comedy clubs in general is that often they require people to be over 18, and are very serious about asking for ID so that underage people don’t imbibe, which makes sense—safety first.

So, yes. An ID was required, and yes she would need it, but no, she did not have it—nor her purse in general. Being an older brother is like that sometimes. I wasn’t about to turn around and drive back to San Francisco—partly because we had the show to go to that night, but also because I would get a bit of enjoyment from her having to sit outside while I enjoyed some comedy as a “lesson.” A sinister brotherly thought.

Luckily, I remembered that a few months back, my sister had to scan her passport as a PDF so that we could have a digital copy on another trip. I called up the comedy club and asked if they’d take a digital ID if we didn’t have a physical one, and while they were confused, they did say yes, so long as it was official. Good news! Once we arrived at the hotel, she logged on to Backblaze, found her backed up passport PDF, and we printed it out in the lobby. And we made it to the show on time. Happily ever after!

OK, so maybe it wasn’t really a horror story and the prospect of not making it to a comedy show may not seem scary to some people, but our family dynamic would mean that if she wasn’t able to attend and had to sit outside, she’d never have lived it down—low stakes slightly spooky (the best kind).

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Backblaze Files Registration Statement for Proposed Initial Public Offering

Post Syndicated from Backblaze original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-files-registration-statement-for-proposed-initial-public-offering/

San Mateo, California, October 18, 2021 – Backblaze, Inc. today announced that it has publicly filed a registration statement on Form S-1 with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) relating to a proposed initial public offering of its Class A common stock. The number of shares to be offered and the price range for the offering have not yet been determined. Backblaze intends to list its Class A common stock on the Nasdaq Global Market under the ticker symbol “BLZE.”

Oppenheimer & Co., William Blair and Raymond James will act as lead book-running managers for the proposed offering, with JMP Securities and B. Riley Securities acting as joint book-running managers. Lake Street will act as co-manager for the proposed offering.

The offering will be made only by means of a prospectus. Copies of the preliminary prospectus related to the offering may be obtained, when available, from Oppenheimer & Co. Inc., Attention: Syndicate Prospectus Department, 85 Broad St., 26th Floor, New York, NY 10004, by telephone at (212) 667-8055, or by email at [email protected]; William Blair & Company, L.L.C. Attention: Prospectus Department, 150 North Riverside Plaza, Chicago, IL 60606, or by telephone at (800) 621-0687 or by email at [email protected]; or Raymond James & Associates, Inc., 880 Carillon Parkway, St. Petersburg, FL 33716, email: [email protected], telephone: 800-248-8863.

A registration statement relating to these securities has been filed with the SEC but has not yet become effective. These securities may not be sold, nor may offers to buy be accepted, prior to the time the registration statement becomes effective. This press release shall not constitute an offer to sell or the solicitation of an offer to buy, nor shall there be any sale of these securities in any state or jurisdiction in which such offer, solicitation, or sale would be unlawful prior to registration or qualification under the securities laws of any such state or jurisdiction.

Investors:
James Kisner
Vice President of Investor Relations
ir@backblaze.com

Press Contact:
Patrick Thomas
Head of Publishing
press@backblaze.com

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Subscription Changes for Computer Backup

Post Syndicated from Gleb Budman original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/subscription-changes-for-computer-backup/

Thank you all for being Backblaze customers and fans. We’re writing today’s post to let you know that effective August 16th, 2021 at 5 p.m. Pacific, the prices for the Backblaze Computer Backup service are increasing. At that time, our prices per subscription will change to:

Extension Program FAQ

Why the Change?

In short, because of a double digit growth in customer data storage, significant increases in supply chain costs, and our desire to continue investing in providing you with a great service.

Here’s a little more information:

Data Growth and Component Price Increases

Our Computer Backup service is unlimited (and we mean it). Businesses and individuals can back up as much data from their Macs and PCs as they like, and we back up external drives by default as well. This means that as our customers generate more and more data, our costs can rise while our prices remain fixed.

Over the last 14 years, we have worked diligently to keep our costs low and pass our savings on to customers. We’ve invested in deduplication, compression, and other technologies to continually optimize our storage platform and drive our costs down—savings which we pass on to our customers in the form of storing more data for the same price.

However, the average backup size stored by Computer Backup customers has spiked 15% over just the last two years. Additionally, not only have component prices not fallen at traditional rates, but recently electronic components that we rely on to provide our services have actually increased in price.

The combination of these two trends, along with our desire to continue investing in providing a great service, is driving the need to modestly increase our prices.

The Service Keeps Improving

While the cost of our Computer Backup service is increasing, you’re going to continue getting great value for your money. For example, in just the last two years (most recently with version 8.0), we have:

  • Added Extended Version History, which allows customers to retain their backups for longer—up to one year or even forever.
  • Increased backup speeds—faster networks and more intelligent threading means that you can back up quickly and get protected faster.
  • Optimized the app to be kinder to your computer—less load on the computer means we stay out of the way while keeping you protected, leaving your resources free for whatever else you’re working on.
  • Re-architected the app to reduce strain on SSDs—we’ve rewritten how the app handles copying files for backup, which reduces strain and extends the useful life of SSDs, which are common in newer computers.
  • Improved data access by enhancing our mobile apps—backing up your data is one thing, but accessing them is equally important. Our mobile apps give you access to all of your backed up files on the go.
  • Easing deployment options—for our business customers, installing and managing backups across all of their users’ machines is a huge job; we improved our silent installers and mass deployment tools to make their lives easier.

These are just some of the major improvements we’ve made in recent years—nearly every week we push big and small improvements to our service, upgrading our single sign-on options, optimizing inherit backup state functionality, and much more. (A lot of the investments are under-the-covers to silently make the service function more efficiently and seamlessly.)

Lock In Your Current Price With a Subscription Extension

As a way of thanking you for being a loyal Backblaze customer, we’re giving you the opportunity to lock in your existing Computer Backup pricing for one extra year beyond your current subscription period.

(Read our Extension Program FAQ to learn more.)

Thank you for being a customer. We really appreciate your trust in us and are committed to continuing to provide a service that makes it easy to get your data backed up, access it from anywhere in the world, protect it from ransomware, and to locate your computer should it be lost or stolen.

Answers to Questions You Might Have

Are Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage Prices Changing?

No. While data flowing into our storage cloud is up across the board, our B2 Cloud Storage platform charges for usage by the byte, so customers pay for the amount of data that they use. Meanwhile, Computer Backup is an unlimited service, and the increase in our customers’ average storage amount plus the recent spike in rising hardware costs are contributing factors to the increase.

Will You Raise Prices Again?

We have no plans to raise prices in the future. While we expect the data stored by our customers to continue growing, we also expect that the global supply chain challenges will stabilize. We work hard to drive down the cost of storage and provide a great service at an affordable price and intend to continue doing exactly that.

The post Subscription Changes for Computer Backup appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Recent Outages: Why We Accelerated Registry Changes

Post Syndicated from Jeremy Milk original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/recent-outages-why-we-accelerated-registry-changes/

Looking Out for Our Team, Customers, and Community

Earlier in February, Backblaze experienced two unexpected service disruptions. We take this very seriously and we apologize for any disruptions that you may have experienced as a result of these instances. We would also like to explain what happened and what steps we have taken to avoid such interruptions in the future.

What Happened:

Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage can serve a variety of use cases, including hosting content. Sometimes cloud storage services are used to host malicious content. The use of malicious content by any of our customers violates Backblaze policy. Any time we receive notice that an account is serving such content involving our cloud storage system, our Compliance team investigates and instigates appropriate actions as needed. (For reference, our preferred reporting channel is an email to reportphishing@backblaze.com.)

Sometimes domain registrars notice or receive these complaints and then reach out to the involved parties with a notice and mandate that the content be removed or the account will be suspended. That is what happened in both outage cases mentioned above: Our registrar notified us of malicious content from certain customers and requested that we remove specific links for these customers from Backblaze B2 in order to avoid suspension of the Backblaze B2 domain.

On February 12, due to a variety of factors—including a notice from a third-party registrar outside of our established communication process—the Backblaze B2 domain was suspended and we worked with our registrar to bring it back online shortly thereafter. This prompted us to review and refine our operating procedures (for example, we expanded our response team and hardened our escalation process) to coordinate more effectively with our third-party registrar, and to move up exploration of developer-friendly registrar solutions more fitting for current and future needs.

On February 17, a similar scenario occurred again. In this case, we acted in line with our new processes, yet despite our removal of the content as they had requested, the domain was still suspended by our third-party registrar. The domain was brought back up shortly thereafter, but for anyone experiencing outages for their Backblaze B2-hosted data who were unable to log in as a result of the suspension, we believe that any outage is too long.

What We’ve Changed

After the second domain suspension, we accelerated our decision to switch registrars—with determination to migrate as fast as possible. We opted to move to Cloudflare, whom we already partner closely with as part of the Bandwidth Alliance and whom we see as offering proven, enterprise-worthy service to a wide array of businesses and organizations. Beyond their technology, one of the key benefits of working with our partners at Cloudflare is that we’ll have a direct line of communication in the event of any future content takedown requests.

We started the process of switching our registration to Cloudflare on February 18 and completed the process on February 23.

We truly appreciate the clear communication and suggestions from our customers and others who were experiencing issues—and yet we aim to make any such future communication unnecessary. If you have any additional questions, please feel free to post them in the comments below and we’ll respond as we’re able!

The post Recent Outages: Why We Accelerated Registry Changes appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Backblaze Holiday Gift Guide 2020

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backblaze-holiday-gift-guide-2020/

The gift giving-est time of year is almost here and at Backblaze, we’re always on the lookout for cool gizmos and gadgets to get our friends and family. (Or if we’re honest, ones that we’ve been eyeing ourselves but just can’t bring ourselves to buy.)

Since this year has been so…unique, I polled my team members and asked what tools and toys they’ve been using or would love to receive. This year’s crop of gift ideas runs the gamut from egg cookers to firepits, but since we’re all spending more time at home, it’s no wonder that cooking gadgets, games, and smart home accessories were top of mind. Let’s dive in!

Food and Food-related Goodies

Instant Pot

You have a ton of gadgets already, but what if you could cook things…instantly. Or, near instantly. I personally have been eyeing one of these for months, but need to use my slow cooker a few more times before finally expediting the process!

Zojirushi Indoor Tabletop Grill

Sure, you can make things instantly with an Instant Pot, but what about grilling indoors? Zojirushi has you covered.

Wireless BBQ Thermometer

Safety first! You’re cooking a lot more at home and maybe you’re not exactly sure what shade of pink your tenderloin is supposed to be. Well…better safe than sorry!

Baking Steel

It’s kind of like a pizza stone, but made of steel! Pizza steel!

Egg Cooker

If you’re the type of person who needs eggs in a hurry and doesn’t want to fiddle with them, this little gadget is an Amazon best seller.

Mitsubishi Electric Bread Oven Toaster

This bread oven is a bit pricey, but it’s also a bread oven that can make grilled cheeses. Think of the grilled cheesiness!

Whiskey Decanter

Not all decanters are created equal. This one has a boat in the middle of it. Perfect for the sailing aficionado in your life who also happens to enjoy whiskey.

Games and Game Accessories

Reaper Miniatures Learn to Paint Kit Core Skills

Express yourself by learning to paint miniatures (and then use them to play tabletop games like Dungeons and Dragons)!

Wacom Bamboo Folio Smartpad

Another way to get the creative juices flowing is this smartpad! You can take notes or doodle on it, and then convert your work to shareable documents.

DribbleUp

Stay active! If you have a backyard or reasonable downstairs neighbors we recommend the DribbleUp Smart Soccer Ball or Smart Basketball! These Smart Balls link to your smartphone and give you telemetry into how you’re progressing in developing your skills.

7 Wonders: Duel

Stuck at home with your significant other and are bored playing War? Enjoy the prospect of outsmarting and besting your partner in a board game? Duel is designed specifically for two players. Have at ‘em!

Zombicide: Black Plague

This game comes with miniatures that you can paint and play with—perfect for getting your skills up, and also there are zombies. Who could ask for more?

Prusa MINI+

Tired of using other people’s miniatures? Make your own! This powerful 3D printer can help you build the miniatures of your dreams, or build your own home gadgets!

Ender 3 3D Printer

If you’re curious about 3D printing but don’t want to go all-in from the beginning, this “entry level” 3D printer is a great way to get your hands dirty and give the 3D printing world a whirl!

Oculus Quest

Don’t want to build your own 3D world or want a break from the real one? Explore virtual worlds instead! You don’t need a computer, but you can plug this into your gaming rig for extra power!

Home (Sometimes Smart)

Nugget

Did someone say next-gen pillow fort? Use this modular setup to build the fort of your dreams, or just a nice random lounging area to watch TV in comfort.

HomePod mini

Smart homes are definitely top of mind nowadays and the new HomePod mini is a great entry level gadget to help dip your toe into smart homing.

Google Nest Mini

If you’re not in the Apple ecosystem and want to give smart homes a try, the Google Nest Mini is a great inexpensive option to listen to music while in the shower (speaking from personal experience).

Kasa Smart Wi-Fi Plug

Smart plugs are a great way to turn on the lights in your house when you walk through the door and don’t like looking at pitch darkness. These tie in to your existing smart home devices, or use the app to control your plugs!

Arlo Video Doorbell

Smart doorbells are all the rage nowadays and if you aren’t keen on expensive monthly plans, this is a great entry point into the smart home security system space!

Premier Comfort Electric Mattress Pad

Now that winter is upon us (at least here in the U.S.), treat yourself to an electric mattress pad and stay toasty and cozy no matter what’s going on outside. This one’s also compatible with your smart home and plugs!

Gaiam Yoga Mat

Don’t forget to make time for yourself and get a little stretch in throughout the day. These yoga mats are affordable and durable!

Massage Gun

After working out you might feel a little sore. Massage guns are all the rage right now and they do a heck of a job getting all of your knots loosened up. The myriad of attachments will help you get into all your nooks and crannies!

For the Person Who Has Everything

Personalized AirPod Case

There are a lot of Etsy shops out there that can help you personalize things, so browse around! These AirPod cases are pretty stellar!

Baby Yoda Christmas Sweater

‘Tis the Baby Yoda season (The Child has been named!) and what better way to celebrate than buying everyone in your family matching sweaters!

Oaktown Spices

Buy local! If you have a favorite local shop, be sure to show them some love this holiday season! If you want to support some from around the country, here’s a great spice shop in Oakland, California—and their gift boxes are the cutest.

Bookshop.org

Bookstores are getting hit pretty hard right now and if your local store is closed, this online bookshop donates proceeds to local bookstores—combining the convenience of online shopping with the good feeling of buying from a local store. They can also help you locate a local bookstore that’s open near you! Some books we recommend: “The 7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle,” “Rhythm of War,” “Designing Your Life: How to Build a Well-Lived, Joyful Life,” “The Essential Calvin and Hobbes: A Calvin and Hobbes Treasury,” “Cozy” (for kids), and “The Hike” (also for kids).

Death Star Fire Pit

OK, this thing is $2,400 but… Look at it!

Backblaze

And, of course… Backblaze.
You know it. You love it. You can gift it!

We wish you a healthy, happy, and hopeful new year! Maybe this list helped you on your gifting journey, or maybe it just added more items to your own wish list. What are you looking forward to gifting and receiving this year? Let us know in the comments below!

The post Backblaze Holiday Gift Guide 2020 appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Backing Up Our Thanks

Post Syndicated from Ramya Ramamoorthy original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/backing-up-our-thanks/

Needless to say, 2020 has been a challenging, unpredictable year for everyone. All of us faced trials that we had never expected a year ago. In spite of the adversity, or possibly simply to ward it off, our team decided to dig for a couple of silver linings from this past year. We understand that times are still tough, but we wanted to take a moment this Thanksgiving season to show thanks for some of the unexpected positives that have come out of quarantine.

So we reached out to the team to see what goodness they’ve taken from what has felt like a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad year (hat tip to Judith Viorst), and we got some excellent responses that we’ve digested for you here.

Healthier Lifestyles

Many of our team members have exchanged their morning commute for a workout. Jeremy, our Senior Director of Product Marketing, has run far more track and trail miles, more often and more quickly over time. He even set a 5K personal record time!

Yev, our Director of Marketing, has also been on the workout grind. He said, “I’ve lost weight and gotten more healthy! During the first day of shelter-in-place, I started doing yoga and a small calisthenic workout, and have kept that streak going throughout the pandemic. I’ve also started to walk four to five miles per day to get me to the 10K step mark, and have started to eat more vegetables. Gross! But also, great!”

Photo by Jenny Hill.

It’s a Full House

No matter the family size you have, before the pandemic, many of us were a little bit busy and hard to catch up with. But, shelter-in-place gave us the opportunity (and sometimes the necessity) to slow down and reconnect with family and friends over Zoom happy hours and holiday celebrations.

Those family members who were long distance and couldn’t make it to all the holidays finally got to join in and see everyone on the screen. College friends who kept pushing out that weekend getaway together found a way to play virtual games and share silly memories with each other.

One common response that people gave about this shelter-in-place time is that “It’s time we won’t ever get to spend together like this again.” Although our new work from home coworkers took up a lot of the Wi-Fi bandwidth, we wouldn’t trade that time we spent at home with family, friends, and kids for anything else.

Photo by Pablo Merchán Montes.

Furry Friends to the Rescue

Let’s admit it, animals truly love their owners unconditionally (even cats, in their own special way) and that makes leaving them behind in a house all day tough. Some days it’s hard when your animal accidentally falls asleep on your toes and you just don’t have the heart to move them when it’s time to leave for work. The pandemic has made that conundrum a tad easier.

During shelter-in-place, having an animal nearby during tough times made life a lot easier to deal with. The potential for impending bad news each day made a cuddly dog or an energetic hamster an important part of the survival kit for each day for many of us.

And for the animals, this time at home was a blessing. They didn’t know why they had been given it but it was pretty cool that it was happening. They didn’t need to know about social distancing, or what the right face mask to wear is, or how to disinfect their groceries—animals just saw this time as extra time with their owners. They couldn’t believe they were around… and around… and still there… and “OMG they are still there.”

Seeing the world through their eyes of “more play time” really made shelter-in-place a little less tough.

Photo by Adrianna Calvo.

Cozy Pants Rule

With work from home, employees have embraced clothing that makes them feel more comfortable. Judith, our Recruiting Coordinator, said, “During shelter-in-place I’ve completely given up wearing jeans, and other restricting (yet, fashionable) items. I don’t think I’ll ever go back. I am so happy with my decision. Goodbye, jeans! See you never.”

Cheers to a lifetime of no more jeans!

Photo by Tatiana Syrikova.

No Traffic!

Although we miss being able to binge our favorite podcasts in the car, we do not miss sitting in car-to-car traffic. One of the top responses we found from our coworkers about silver linings during shelter-in-place is “Getting back two hours of my day that I used to spend commuting!”

If you sit in two hours of traffic a week for an average of 10 hours a week—that amounts to nearly 20 days in a year that we get back. And to top it off, driving to go anywhere at 5 p.m. is less stressful when you don’t have to worry about rush hour traffic.

Photo by Nick Fewings.

Some “Me” Time

Even though the pandemic has led to fewer social interactions, some of our employees have been enjoying that alone time. They have a lot more freedom to do what they want; for example, some of our employees love that they can now listen to music while working without wearing headphones.

Another silver lining for some of our coworkers is that they no longer have to attend social events, which has been a real stress inducer for them in the past. We still have virtual social events for our extroverted employees, but this time in quarantine has given our introverted employees a bit of a breather.

Photo by Andrea Piacquadio.

Share Your Silver Lining!

We’ve watched the world find new ways to bring each other together in a year where it felt like we could never be close again. Out of adversity we found new ways to connect, be creative, care for others, and also make a lot of new food (Like sourdough, who doesn’t love a good homemade sourdough loaf?).

We hope that you can find a silver lining in your 2020, too. Whether it be big, or small, or something in between. Also, thank you to Nicole Perry for help with writing this post!

We’d love for you to join us and find your own silver lining at Backblaze. We’re hiring, so apply today! We wish you and your loved ones a happy Thanksgiving!

The post Backing Up Our Thanks appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

You’ve Cat to Be Kitten Me…

Post Syndicated from Yev original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/youve-cat-to-be-kitten-me/

Catblaze. It started as an April Fools’ joke four years ago, but it stuck around as part of our website ever since. A few intrepid website perusers even found their way to the page and signed up for our backup service there. To be clear: There’s no actual difference between the two products except the landing page. If you bought Backblaze on Catblaze, it’s Backblaze. You received the same great service as everyone else, just with a nice cat-themed wrapper. Got it? Great!

It’s been a while since we’ve done anything with Catblaze though, and so I got to thinking… If the page is still functional, how can we make use of it again? Well, why not redirect some traffic there and see how it affects conversions?! A lot of people love cats, maybe that love could be translated to loving backing up, too?

So, that’s exactly what we did! A few weeks ago, for one day, we diverted some traffic from backblaze.com/cloud-backup.html to backblaze.com/catblaze.html to see how they performed against each other. Did anyone even notice? And if they did, did they sign up anyway? Read on to find out! The results may shock you! And other clickbait hyperbole!

Why are we doing this? Well, along with everyone else who has had to shift to remote office-ing during the pandemic, we’ve been working hard to maintain high spirits and morale here at Backblaze. While we made a lot of changes to help our team be as productive as possible while working remotely, we thought, why not get a little silly, engage in a little charitable fundraising, and also buoy the spirits of our community at large: You!

With a lot of people spending more time at home, animal adoption in urban areas increasing, and “Tiger King” being so popular on Netflix, I spent some time chatting with a friend of mine who works for the Humane Society of the United States, and asked if there were any shelters that were looking for aid. He told me that the Peninsula Humane Society—the same branch that the models for the original “Catblaze Cats” came from—could use some donations. So, as part of this experiment, we’ll be contributing to them in honor of the kittens that helped make this experiment possible!

It also happens to be National Cat Day today, so what better way to celebrate?

And Now, on to the Results!

Wow, who would have known that diverting 50% of our hard-earned traffic to an April Fools’ landing page was an interesting idea? The results may or may not surprise you, but here’s the bottom line: Sending traffic to catblaze.com resulted in a decrease in trial conversions (folks coming to our site and creating a trial account) by 15%. Which, admittedly, is better than some of us had guessed!

Let’s dive into more of those numbers, shall we? (Assuming we’re comparing Catblaze to our regular Backblaze Computer Backup landing page.)

  • Days of experiment: One.
  • Traffic diverted: 50%.
  • Percent change in conversion rate from visit to trial: 15% reduction.
  • Percent change in conversion rate from visit to purchase (skip trial): 41% reduction.
    • 69.96% (A palindrome!) of people were less likely to purchase directly from Catblaze—that’s how many fewer folks went to the “buy” page next.
  • Percent change in bounce rate: 15% improvement.
    • Percent change in visits going to the home page from Catblaze: 118%.
  • Tweets asking us what is going on: Zero.
  • Support tickets asking us, “Why the cats?”: Zero.
  • Donation to the Peninsula Humane Society: $2,000.

Lessons Learned

While we probably shouldn’t update our onboarding messaging to include a picture of our Catblaze friends, it may be worth going a bit more kitten-friendly in future illustrations and designs for our website. The fact that there was a 15% improvement in bounce rate (and 20% reduction in exit rate) meant that people were sticking around and looking at that awesome cat content, or they were very confused. The cat content was at best amusing, but at worst confusing (which is usually not what you want your customers to be feeling), and you can see that was the case because we saw the number of people going back to our homepage increase by 118%. So, while we kept people on our website, their confusion was visible in how they navigated our website.

Perhaps the most entertaining thing is that no one asked about the Catblaze website. We received no Tweets or support tickets asking us why everything was cat-themed on our website. Based on our daily traffic, and the seemingly minor reasons that people write in with support tickets, I would have sworn up and down that I’d be on social media answering questions all day—though, if I responded to folks asking about it, that may have affected the experiment—so, it’s great that it went unnoticed.

Will we be doing this again? I doubt it. The Finance department is already sending me eye roll emojis, but it was definitely an interesting experiment and taught me one important lesson: While people definitely noticed the cats, they certainly didn’t seem to mind them.

The post You’ve Cat to Be Kitten Me… appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.

Not So Suite: Dealing With Google’s New 2TB Caps

Post Syndicated from Skip Levens original https://www.backblaze.com/blog/not-so-suite-dealing-with-googles-new-2tb-caps/

It’s easy to get used to “all you can eat” data plans—and one of the biggest justifications to use G Suite until now was that users could store as much as they wanted. But when we have unlimited data, we tend to forget about how much our content is growing until someone tells us our unlimited data plan is now… limited?

So it was a bit of a shock for lots of G Suite users to learn that they now only get 2TB per user for their $12 per user per month plan.

Hat tip to Jacob Hands who alerted us about this on Twitter!

G Suite users have to upgrade to the Enterprise class of service to retain unlimited storage. It’s unclear how much that costs because their pricing chart refers you to a sales representative if you want to get a quote. But as is true in restaurants: If you need to ask, it’s probably more expensive than you’d care to know.

If you’ve been using G Suite for long, and especially if you work with large data sets or rich media, you’re probably using more than 2TB per user. You’re going to need a plan to not only reduce your storage footprint on Google, but also safely store the content you’re forced to move while making it available and useful for your users. What do you do?

Side Note: Backblaze has proudly offered unlimited backup plans at a fixed price for close to 14 years, and we’ll continue to do so. This article focuses on solutions for teams using G Suite for collaboration. If you just need a solid backup, check out our guide on backing up your
G Suite data. If you’re looking for an incredible cloud storage offering, read on to learn about Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage.

Take Control of Your Shared User Content

Good question. You can make the largest reduction quickly by shifting videos, image libraries, and data sets out of Google Drive and into Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage!

Backblaze B2, of course, is our easy-to-use cloud storage that stores everything you want to protect at only $5/TB per month, and it makes everything you store there immediately available to you, the instant you need it.

Getting started is as simple as signing up, then you can upload files and browse them in Backblaze’s web interface, or use any one of hundreds of solutions that incorporate Backblaze B2 seamlessly, such as the popular (and free) Cyberduck SFTP file browser.

With your Backblaze B2 account set up, it’s time to start pruning files in Google Drive and preparing them for transfer!

Step One: Take an Inventory of What You Have in Google Drive

Back in Google Drive, organize your efforts by file size. In other words, move the biggest stuff first. The simplest way to uncover large files is to use a not so obvious search feature to organize by file type: ZIP archives, videos, and photos will almost surely be filling the most space. To select files by type, click the tiny triangle at the right of the search field to reveal a file type dropdown.

Using Google Drive’s search field, and the dropdown triangle, you can specify large files to move manually.
Advanced Tips: If you’re reasonably proficient and have a ton of shared files to dig through, there are a few handy tools you can use to tackle this step.

Cyberduck: In Cyberduck, for example, you can add a new Bookmark for Google Drive, and follow the wizard to authenticate to G Suite. Now you can browse Team Drives, Shared Documents, and My Drive contents easily, identify the largest files, or simply move all of this content to local storage, then into your Backblaze B2 account.

Rclone: Rclone offers another way to mount and copy all of this content off of Google Drive as well, though that path is only recommended for more advanced users. You can then start moving the largest files, or even copy your entire Google Drive folder of content with rclone.

Step Two: Migrate Your Data to Backblaze B2

Now it’s time to carry out your plan: Download from G Suite, copy to Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage Buckets, and organize your data! Once your files are safely downloaded, and uploaded to your Backblaze B2 account, they’re safe to remove from Google Drive.

Step Three: Give Your Users Remote-friendly, yet Managed Storage

If you’re a solo operator, you should be all set. But if you’re working with a team, you’re going to want to take one more step to help out your users. The best way to present storage to your team is a solution that is both accessible for remote workers, yet also easily administered by you.

For Small Teams (3-20 Users): In Backblaze B2, you can define your users into workgroups, create Buckets of storage for them, and issue app keys for users that correspond to those Buckets—all from your account management page. Users can apply those app keys to a number of tools to make their storage available on their laptops, such as Cyberduck, Mountain Duck, or ExpanDrive.

For Larger Teams (21-Infinity): You can present fully managed storage to your users that offers the same experience as corporate, shared NAS storage with a pairing of LucidLink and Backblaze B2. This approach can be set up quickly, and tie into your company’s directory services for provisioning without having to buy and set up your own hardware NAS systems.

Welcome!

We hope you’ll join us—we look forward to protecting your content and helping you serve your users!

The post Not So Suite: Dealing With Google’s New 2TB Caps appeared first on Backblaze Blog | Cloud Storage & Cloud Backup.