SpiderOak protects users’ privacy through passwords or encryption keys, preventing anyone from accessing their data for any reason. The system encrypt user data on their servers using 256-bit AES encryption, and also, using an extra step of providing an encryption the decryption key. This key can only be decrypted with the user’s password. The only flaw of this, however, is the fact that user data is unrecoverable in case of losing the password.
SpiderOak provides desktop applications for Windows, as well as mobile applications for iOS and Android. You can access its web platform through any browser.
Compared to other data backup services, SpiderOak is quite pricey and does not offer a very large quota for free – only 2GB. SpiderOak also offers a nice referral scheme, through which you can earn some additional free storage space.
Generally speaking, SpiderOak is a much more flexible and versatile product compared to most of its competitors, but this comes at the price of lack of user-friendliness. In order to use SpiderOak, you must install the client software on your computer or on multiple computers. You can use the web client only to download files you have already uploaded to the server. After installing the desktop client you need to perform some configurations, like selecting the types of files and folders to backup.
The Devices menu on the left side of the screen and the Storage Bar at the bottom give you information about how much space you have used and which systems are using it. Once you have configured backups for your computer(s), you can use the Sync tab to perform syncing between folders. Using the desktop client’s View tab you can view all the files that have been uploaded from any of your machines, as well as the status of your backup.
Since SpiderOak separates the sync and backup processes from one another, you can back up different folders from multiple machines without syncing those changes to every computer connected to the account. When you select a file in the View tab, you can see a list of all the different versions of that file, allowing you to recover an older version if you’ve accidentally deleted or changed something you didn’t have to. Detailed logging and statistics, viewable under the Status tab, give you detailed information about your account and your computer’s activities.
The last of SpiderOak’s major functions is sharing, which is not intuitive at all. To perform a share, you need to go to the View tab and select what you’d like to share and click the www button. The system will create a link that can be used to share the item with your friends and colleagues.
You can also share items by creating a unique ShareID using the SpiderOak client. From the Share tab, you can create individual ShareRooms, each with their own name, and you can make one or more folders from one or more systems available in each “room”. To access the files, users will need to go to a web address that contains the ShareRoom name and the room key, at which point they can download any shared files.
After you perform all the steps needed for creating ShareRooms and RoomKey, click the Start Stare button at the bottom right and you are good to go. Your friends and colleagues will receive password protected files with high level of security.
SpiderOak has one more cool feature to offer its users. This is the SpiderOak Hive. This is also an application, through which you can store your digital belongings and easily synchronize, share, access and backup your files from any computer or mobile device. After downloading the SpiderOak application, the SpiderOak Hive folder will appear. Any files you put in your Hive will sync across your other Hive folders on your other devices.
To use SpiderOak Hive, simply locate your SpiderOak Hive folder. On Windows it will be located in the Documents folder. By default, it also appears as a folder on your desktop. Drag and drop any files and folders into the SpiderOak Hive. Everything you put there will upload and sync to other devices that have the SpiderOak application running.
Also, when you select a file in your file system, right click on it and in the drop-down menu locate the SpiderOak option. Move to the right of it and click Add to Backup. This way your file will be automatically placed and synchronized in your SpiderOak folder. To share a file using SpideOak Hive, right-click on any file in your SpiderOak Hive folder and select Share this file. This feature, however is only applicable for Windows as of the present moment. The SpiderOak developers promise applications for Mac and Linux are coming soon.