Jungle Disk is an online backup service from the folks at Rackspace. It will back up all your data to the cloud, where it can be restored in the event of any disaster. It works on Windows, Mac, and Linux.
- Backup to the Rackspace or Amazon cloud
- First 5GB of storage free
- Pay-as-you go model means you pay only for the data you use
- Confusing pricing and interface
- No Android app
The Bottom Line
Jungle Disk is a good online backup service for those who prefer to only pay for what they use. It’s backed by the power of the Rackspace and Amazon S3 clouds. However with so much power and so many choices, it’s more confusing than competing services.
Jungle disk has several different editions to choose from. Unfortunately, their website doesn’t do a very good job comparing them. I’ve created the following table to highlight the differences:
|$2/month + storage fees
|$3/month + storage fees
|$4/month + storage fees
|$5/month + storage fees
|Windows, Mac, Linux
|Windows, Mac, Linux
|Windows Server, Linux
|Rackspace – $0.15/GB per month.
Amazon S3 – $0.125/GB per month + transfer fees + request fees.
I chose to review the Desktop version, but the “Simply Backup” edition would work well for most home users. It’s the best “backup only” option, and doesn’t have the unneeded cloud storage/syncing features of the other editions.
You may notice Jungle Disk lets you choose where you want your data to be stored. Which should you choose? For most people, Rackspace will be the best choice, since it’s the the default and the pricing is more predictable than Amazon S3.
The Jungle Disk Desktop setup process is like this:
- Enter your account information
- Create an “online disk”, which is basically an online folder to store your data
- Select features
- Configure automatic backup
The first time setup will ask which folders you want to back up, as well as the schedule you want to run it.
Jungle disk has many settings to choose from in the “Configure” menu. You can limit the bandwidth speed, enable public file sharing, enable encryption, and more. You can also set up local drive mapping, which would let you drag and drop files to your Jungle Disk.
Jungle Disk will automatically back up your computer based on the schedule you set.
I liked how Jungle Disk lets you choose from many different scheduling options. For instance, you can backup as often as every 5 minutes or as infrequently as every week. You’re not limited to just a daily backup.
Jungle Disk also supports block level deduplication. This means if you have common data among your backups, it’s only stored once. This saves valuable space when storing common files among computers, such as system files.
It can backup your NAS devices, but it still needs to be run from a desktop computer.
Restoring files is easy enough. Click “Restore Files” from the main screen. Then choose the Backup Vault you wish to restore data from (most users will just have one). This screen will pop up:
If you wish to restore previous versions of files, you can select “Restore from backup as of: <date>” and just choose whatever date you want. You can then restore files to their original location or a new folder.
By default, Jungle Disk will keep previous versions of files for 60 days. After this, they will be deleted. You can adjust the length of time files are kept in the “Configure” menu. Jungle Disk keeps deleted files for this same amount of time.
Jungle Disk has an app for iOS. It lets you view your files on your iPhone or iPad. There is no app for Android, however.
Jungle Disk lets you share files with friends or coworkers. On your computer, right click on a file you wish to share, and select “Share with Jungle Disk”. The file will be uploaded, and a browser window will open with the URL to share your file. Just make sure public sharing is enabled in settings, or this won’t work. Also, there’s a 5GB max file size for shared files (probably to discourage abuse).
The average upload speed was 240 kB/s during testing. That equals roughly 20 gigabytes per day, which is plenty fast.
All data is backed up over SSL. Data is not stored encrypted by default. If you want to store your data encrypted, you’ll need to enable it in settings (and set a passphrase).
Jungle Disk has separate email addresses for billing, product feedback, and other support inquiries. For technical support, you can submit a support ticket. I submitted a ticket and was responded to the same day. There are also community forums, where users can ask each other for help. User guides and a list of Frequently Asked Questions are also available.
There is no phone support, live chat, or 24/7 support. If you’re a business user, these might be important.
Jungle Disk is an affordable backup solution for home and business users. The pay-as-you-go pricing means you only pay for what you use. If you only have 10GB of data to backup one month, and then 50GB of data the next month, and 20GB the next month, you don’t need to jump from plan to plan. Jungle Disk expands and contracts to fit your needs. The downside is the pricing is less predictable than a fixed-price online backup service, since it changes depending on your use.
|Average Upload Speed
|1.9 Mbps (1.5 Mbps connection)
|Average Download Speed
|Free Online Storage
|Keep Deleted Files
|Back Up to Local Drive
Sync and Share Features
|Public File Sharing
|Data Center Location(s)