October 8th, 2019 by Michael Rink
Backblaze Releases Cloud Backup 7.0
Today, Backblaze released Backblaze Cloud Backup 7.0. The newest version of Backblaze’s cloud backup software includes additional version history options, better security including improved, Single Sign-on (SSO) support, and added support for Catalina. Backblaze will be slowly rolling out automatic updates to their customers over the coming weeks, but you can also trigger a manual update to get the new features immediately. Backblaze was founded in 2007 and provides software to back your data up to Backblaze’s B2 Cloud Storage. Backblaze also takes advantage of their cloud infrastructure to gather and publish some rather interesting information on HDD reliability.
Backblaze has previously kept a 30-day version history of customers' backed up files to protect against accidental deletion. This feature is also useful for recovering back to a known good state when a customer makes a change they later decide they want to revert. It's probably this second use case that has been driving the many requests to extend the version history duration Backblaze has been getting. With version 7.0, Backblaze is giving customers the option of extending their version history back either one year or forever, at an increased cost compared to their current and still default behavior. With a charming attention to detail, Backblaze went to some lengths to make sure everyone knows that change will also have a small impact on current workflows. Previously Backblaze presented users with a drop-down menu to select the date to restore from. Since a customer using a forever list would be presented with an unusably long drop-down, they've added a date-picker to help with selecting a range of dates to show restore points between.
In terms of security improvements, the biggest change is that 7.0 adds support for Microsoft Office 365 so that users can now sign in to Backblaze by using their Microsoft Office 365 credentials. Backblaze also thinks they've got a viable work-around for the Apollo Lake OpenSSL issues. The minority of customers using the lower-end chip should be able to use Backblaze as intended after updating to 7.0.
Backblaze has been talking about the changes they needed to make to get ready for the sixteenth version of macOS, named Catalina (version 10.15). Backblaze thinks they've got everything lined up for the new version, and just in time; Apple released Catalina yesterday. This meant updating the user interface to hopefully provide a smoother experience. Unfortunately, it also means asking users for a lot more permissions than Backblaze has in the past, something Backblaze says is caused by Apple being more diligent about apps asking for permissions.