WorldBackupDay extra: Dolly Drive vs. Crashplan & Dropbox

We got two questions again and again at Macworld. How are you different than Dropbox & CrashPlan? Both logical questions since many people told us they use either or both.

So for World Backup Day, here are some answers to that question, beginning with the most basic: Why use two programs (CrashPlan & Dropbox) to do the job of one (Dolly Drive)? And pay more? (Note: Some clarifications have been made since the original posting on 3/29/13. These are noted *)


If you use CrashPlan, that’s great. You know the value of backing up your files & it’s a fine backup-only solution. The question is, does it give you enough backup & access?

Cloud Storage & Access – Advantage Dolly Drive

CrashPlan only backs up a computer. It does it very well, but that’s all it does. Other than the app on your phone, it doesn’t offer productivity, computer-to-computer access, web-browser access, or collaboration tools—just individual computer backup. (*Clarification: Crashplan lets you restore files from the web but not upload them. Thus, it backs up a computer, but is not a cloud storage repository or sharing hub for working from other computers.)

Dolly Space lets you seamlessly access any-sized* files in the cloud on your iPhone or iPad, & edit/upload* on your other Macs, or in a browser.  You can close your Macbook at work, fire up your iMac at home, and get the same documents on either computer, without missing a beat. If you’ve used Dropbox, Dolly does the same thing.

Dolly Space cloud storage save tons of hard drive space. Let’s say you have a 250 GB Macbook. With Dolly Space, you could have 1 TB of stuff available seamlessly in the cloud. Or throw out your external hard drives and keep your photo or music archives safely stored forever. This isn’t part of CrashPlan’s service.

Share & collaborate. If you have more than one Mac where you access your stuff, Dolly Space makes sharing and collaboration simple.  CrashPlan gives you online backup and their app lets you get & share files on your phone, but it isn’t allowing multiple computers to share.

Immediate Disaster Recovery – Advantage Dolly Drive

Dolly’s Backup features include a bootable clone for immediate disaster recovery. Any expert will tell you the key to backup is  a bootable clone. Dolly Drive does that too. (*editors note: External hard drive required.)

A clone is an exact replica of your entire computer on an external drive that you can actually start a computer from. If your hard drive crashes, simply plug in the clone and –restart your Mac. It’s seamless and immediate.

Optimized for Mac – Advantage Dolly Drive

Unlike the other guys, Dolly Drive is made for Mac from the ground up.

No Java

First, Dolly Drive doesn’t use Java in any capacity so there are no worries of impact on your memory.

Restore by Application type

Second, Dolly lets you view & restore files by Application-type mimicking the way you work. No need to hunt down a file buried in a folder that you probably don’t remember.

Incremental backups of large files

Third, Dolly Drive does incremental backups of virtual machines like Parallels so you can sweep through your backups with minimal impact on your Mac’s speed or memory use.

Pricing: Backup & Online Storage – Advantage DollyDrive

If you want to pay as little as possible for Backup and you are happy moving files in & out of your Dropbox account so that you stay under your free limit, than you probably have a great solution already.  CrashPlan online is only $5 or so per month for unlimited backup of a computer. A Dolly Drive backup & cloud storage plan for a Macbook Air would be closer to $7 per month. You get more access & protection, but it’s still an extra $2/month.

Comparison based on specific usage scenarios

But if you are backing up multiple computers, than CrashPlan jumps to $149 per year. And if you pass your free Gigs for Dropbox and pay for their minimum plan, you’re now at $248 per year for both. Use 200 GBs of Dropbox and it’s $348! Crank it up to 500 GB and you’re paying $648 per year for backup & storage of your movies, pictures, music and work! All of a sudden, 500 GBs or 1TB of Dolly Drive’s complete Mac solution as low as $13 or $22/month is a cloud storage steal.



“How are you different than Dropbox?” was another very common question at Macworld.


Let’s start with price. Your first 2 gigs of Dropbox are free and you could refer enough friends you’ll get up to 18GBs without paying. But once you start seriously using the cloud, Dropbox costs you $99 a year for 100GBs. Dolly gives you the same amount for $72!

For  500 GB, Dropbox charges  $499 per year! A full terabyte of Dolly(twice the size of Dropbox’s biggest plan!) is only $280! So price isn’t even close.

Ease of Storage

Dropbox’s default setting is to assume you want local & cloud copies on all of your machines. That means a single file could be taking up valuable hard drive space in two or three places. Dolly Space puts all of your files directly in the cloud and automatically caches documents locally for quick access. But unlike Dropbox, you’ll select when you also want local copies.

Share within the app.

With Dolly, you can email or share file links directly from the app. Just right click and share single files or whole folders. Dropbox requires you login to a browser to share files. (*Update – Editors correction: This feature is available in Dropbox as well.)

Hands-on support

Dolly Together is a free service for any Dolly customer. Got any problems or questions about Dolly Drive on your Mac? Want to talk about setup or maximizing your usage? Our customer support team will get on the phone or video chat and actually walk you through troubleshooting. Yes, Macs are the easiest computers in the world to use. But that doesn’t mean it’s all snowflakes and milkshakes.  That’s why you want the Sheep.


Dolly Space is designed for the OS X Lion & Mountain Lion experience. You never need to leave the OS X aesthetic for cross-platform Java windows and it’s optimized for super-quick searches of your files.


Dolly Drive gives you everything you need to protect and access your data—clone, cloud & online backup – in a single application designed explicitly for Mac that costs far less than getting the same thing by mixing multiple applications.

We do it all, and we do it better. But don’t just take our word for it. Sign up here for a free full trial, or start with 10 GBS free, and see what the sheep can do for you.



























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