Datto is primarily aimed at enterprise customers and small businesses, including many business-oriented features. Uniquely, Datto’s online backup service is priced to compete with the cheaper personal storage solutions. The low price, combined with the enterprise features, makes Datto an attractive option for backing up your files. This Datto review will critically assess this data storage service, giving you a detailed account of its offerings and useful recommendations for how you can use it.
Datto – General Info
Datto’s cloud storage services fall under their Continuity product umbrella, which includes both hardware backups, online storage and combinations of both. If you are looking to combine on-site hardware backups with cloud storage, then the seamless integration that Datto offers could be a great advantage. Even if you plan on going with exclusively cloud storage, Datto offers a large number of advanced features. These features include full encryption for all files and customizable firewall and authentication procedures.
While more casual users might feel overwhelmed with all the options, it is quite rare to find such a customizable storage solution in this price range. It is especially great for collaborative work, as it keeps old file versions for up to 60 days. You can also easily and automatically generate permissions for newly uploaded files. However, the base version of Datto’s online interface provides relatively little hand-holding for casual users, as it assumes you are a company with some IT experts on staff.
Plans and Pricing
Datto offers several different plans, with the least expensive being the very competitive ‘Base’ plan. However, they are not particularly transparent about the pricing of the other tiers, as they focused towards business customers. While the base plan is full of features, considering the price, it is missing some key components that one would expect as standard features.
Base users don’t get any support except via community forums, so it can be a challenge for less-advanced users to get everything set up. Likewise, you have to upgrade to the Business plan to get geographically-redundant backups. This is often a standard for cloud storage providers.
|Base||$10/month||1 TB||Unlimited users, encryption, local storage mounting, APIs and custom rules|
|Business||By Quote||5 TB||Round-the-clock phone and e-mail support, geo-redundancy|
|Professional||By Quote||10 TB||Custom Theme and Domain|
Datto In-Depth Review
To help you make an informed decision about your next cloud storage solution, this Datto review will analyze in depth the key elements of the data storage equation: the file backup process, file restoration and recovery, security options and other advanced features. By the time you get to the end of the Datto review, you will have all the information you need to make a smart decision based on those key criteria.
Backing up your files with Datto’s cloud storage is relatively simple for desktop and mobile applications, though it can get more confusing if you want to integrate your Dropbox or Google Drive account. The desktop app allows you to select a number of folders, like “My Documents” to back up. You can then see the backed-up files in the Datto folder in your file browser.
The mobile apps are even more streamlined, allowing you to simply select files for backup. For web applications like Google Drive, you need to add Datto as a custom application, after which you will get the private and public keys to access the account.
Restoring your files through Datto is very easy, as the program mostly handles it on its own. Mobile users can see all of the backup files and select which ones they want to download. The desktop app, on the other hand, automatically recovers files from the cloud should you lose them on your local machine.
We feel that there is one way in which its file recovery stands out in this Datto review. Datto keeps multiple versions of the files, for up to 60 days of version history. That makes it easier to recover from system outages and other data disasters, like file vandalism.
Datto, as befit a file storage solution aimed primarily at businesses, takes security very seriously. Datto has a robust set of filters and firewalls available to easily compartmentalize file access between different users and collaborators. This makes it easier to protect data within the organization. For external security, Datto features both 256-bit AES and TLS encryption.
It should be noted as part of this Datto review, however, that it is off by default and can take some digging in the settings to set up. It also only encrypts the files on the server, and they are uploaded and downloaded in an unencrypted state, which is a known vulnerability of the ownCloud platform on which Datto is built.
Datto really stands a head above other data storage solutions in terms of the many additional features that it provides. We did already mention its excellent version control and access compartmentalization rules. H0wever, Datto also allows you to set up rules to automatically tag files as they upload. It does this based on a combination of factors like user, location or file type.
Another unique Datto feature is its commitment to data sovereignty. That means that it stores your files within your own jurisdiction. So, if you are a European or Asian company, your files won’t end up on American servers. This can often streamline and simplify complex legal and IP issues that cloud storage can cause for those companies.
Datto – PROs and CONs
Datto’s cloud storage service earns points for a deep feature set and a low price. However, it suffers when it comes to user-friendliness and support. Below is a list of the strengths and weaknesses of this service.
- Excellent value due to the low monthly price and unlimited users
- Enterprise-level data and access management tools
- Features and security designed to fit business needs
- Steep learning curve, especially if you plan on getting advanced features working
- No dedicated support for Base-level subscribers
- Built on open-source software with some known vulnerabilities
Datto Alternative Options
Microsoft OneDrive for Business offers similar functionality to Datto and integrates well with Microsoft Office. However, it quickly gets much more expensive than Datto because it charges per user, rather than a flat amount for unlimited users like Datto.
Google Apps for Work has a very familiar interface but is missing many of Datto’s enterprise features, since it is basically an extension of the personal Google Apps suite. Like Microsoft, it also charges per user, making it much more expensive than Datto for all but the tiniest businesses.
In the personal data backup realm, Dropbox can offer plenty of storage on the cheap, but it is not optimized for backing up data the same way that Datto is. It also lacks much of Datto’s advanced setup functionality but offers a significant amount of storage for free.
Datto offers a unique value proposition. It combines the ease and simplicity of personal storage and backup with advanced features that are usually exclusive to expensive enterprise suites. Some users could find Datto’s array of settings, options and features overwhelming. But this array can work perfectly for a small business looking for a cheaper enterprise backup solution. We recommend Datto to small business owners looking to set up their own data continuity services on a budget. What do you think? Share your thoughts, experiences and questions regarding this Datto review with us!