Today’s post is written by Paul Ibarra, one of Jungle Disk’s customer support technicians. Paul has been a Racker for almost a year. He began as a support tech for Email before quickly discovering his passion for Jungle Disk and moving over to the team in January 2013. He’s passionate about ping-pong and bowling (he even keeps a bowling ball in the trunk of his car, just in case!)
There is one feature in Jungle Disk that most people (including myself when I first used the product) overlook, which is extremely important on how your data is retained and also how much money you end up paying. Have any idea? Previous versions can make you a hero at the end of the day or make your accounting department gloomy at the end of the month.
Previous Versions play a huge role in your usage/storage fees for the online disk. Ultimately, you have the ability and the power to set this to your personal preference. You just need to determine what’s more important to you, saving data or saving money. Read on to get information on both.
First, what are previous versions? Previous versions are created each time a modification or deletion is made to a file on the Online Disk.
Let’s talk about the configuration options and how they can either help you to save more data or save money.
With the power and cost efficiency of the cloud storing my data isn’t going to break the bank but if I want to store many copies of my data for a long period of time, I can expect my bill to steadily increase. Let’s take a look at the previous version settings for the Backup Vault. We’ll focus on a couple of options found in this location.
The most important option for all users who utilize the backup vault is the line that reads “Expire previous versions and deleted files after” and has a field to enter the number of days. This setting indicates how long each file in the backup’s previous versions is held once it’s modified or deleted. Setting the number of days to a higher amount (30 and above) will give you the cushion you need to ensure that you have access to multiple versions of modified files. You also create a lot of room to recover any file that was deleted, either intentionally or accidentally. Unchecking that option will mean that modified/deleted files are kept indefinitely which will cause your Online Disk to grow quite a bit since you will never be removing data but also ensure that you have all of the previous versions that have been created.
If you’re using the Workgroup or Server Editions, you may have users/servers off site and located in another time zone. Checking the option “Ignore timezone shifts when detecting changed files” will ensure that you are not creating and storing unnecessary previous versions.
By default the number of days is set to 60 which provides you with a vast of amount of backups and previous versions. How much you keep is entirely up to you.
For Workgroup and Desktop Edition users, the second location (Configure > expand the Online Disk >expand Network Drive > select Previous Versions) will be applied to any documents you have saved to your Network Drive. Here you have a few more options to configure that allow you retain as much (or as little) information you would like. By default, this is also set to 60 days and to keep at most 10 previous versions of a particular file. If you uncheck the box “Remove previous version after [input box] days” all previous versions of all files will be kept indefinitely.
“What if I don’t need to retain all of this information? I just want to make sure I have a copy backed up to restore from if I need to.”
This question/comment applies to a lot of our customers (myself included). What can I do? Ensuring that you have modest settings in place in these previous version locations will help you maintain lower usage for your online disks so you don’t wind up paying more than you planned on at the end of your billing cycle.
Here are some recommendations:
Backup Vault > Backup Options
- Leave box checked for “Backup in-use files (NTFS formatted drives only)
- Check “Ignore timezone shifts when detecting changed files
- Set the number of days to a low amount for the option “Expire previous versions and deleted files after [input box] days.” For example, my personal setting for this option is 5 days since I run a backup via the vault twice a week (Wednesday and Sunday evenings). This ensures that I always have 2 backups stored on my online disk.
Network Drive > Previous Versions (Applies to my Legacy Backup also)
- Leave boxes checked for “Keep previous versions of changed files” and “Keep previous versions of deleted files”
- Select All Files for “Keep previous versions for:”
- “Don’t keep previous versions for files over” – Personally, I have this set for 500MB. This makes certain that all of my data intensive files/high resolution pictures/presentations/etc. are tucked away safely, but my 2.5 GB high definition download of Top Gun doesn’t get saved. If I lose Top Gun, I lose Maverick and Goose for a little bit, but I can always re-download it. What’s important is that my family photos, and created documents get saved.
- “Remove previous versions after [input box] days” – I have this set to 3, but anywhere between 2-7 will work.
- Uncheck “Keep at least [input box] previous versions…” – Having this checked will keep X amount of previous versions indefinitely and you can expect your online disk to grow as you modify files.
- “Keep at most [input box] previous versions…” – I have this set to 2. To make this more manageable, we recommend 2-3.
The above are simply recommendations on keeping your usage down which will keep your monthly payment down along with it. You have the ability to modify these settings in any way you see fit.
Lastly, you will want to make sure that your Backup Cleanup process is running successfully (this is set to run once a week). This process removes your expired previous versions keeping your usage down. You can check the status of the Backup Cleanup by going to the Activity Monitor, then select Logs > View Backup History. You will see an entry with the Result showing as CLEANUP. If you do not see this completing successfully, contact support and we’ll help you get squared away.
Jungle Disk Customer Support