Now that I think about it... no-one has created a really good and friendly truly open backup tool... well, at least not one enabling easy use as well as an economy of helpful offsite backup providers.
We have a bunch of flexible (or in some ways non-flexible) low-level command line backup tools. But they are not user friendly. And do not make off-site backups easy. At the very least the comercial providers we'd use for backups do not compete over backup specific stuff. So storage costs will never be driven down.
We have a bunch of simple open-source backup GUIs. But while they are user friendly they typically encourage off-site backup even less than the cli ones.
And we have bunches of closed source backup providers offering various assortments of friendly GUIs, client side encryption, slow incremental backups over time, etc... But while these do encourage off-site backup, using them ties you in to one provider leaving you to rely on their ability to survive. This lock-in also does not provide a good environment for competition to ensure fair pricing of backup storage.
What would be really nice would be a new multi-platform open-source backup tool client (+GUI) (and perhaps a server protocol too; to support the ease of use that simplifying the configuration to a dedicated protocol and setup would provide).
* The client would allow you to configure not one, but multiple destinations for your backups.
* And it would be in charge of trickling data to all of these destinations continually.
* ...or pushing to them much faster in bursts if said destination is something like a USB drive that is not always plugged in.
* It would have full support for client side encryption of the data. (probably encrypting the key itself via password so restoration is possible)
* It would also be in charge of maintaining differential backups of the same file and expiring stuff as well.
* Perhaps the local client could also handle de-duplication.
* To balance between optimized backup and ease of restoration from the backup. Perhaps the primary type of backup destination would be a custom storage type; Which would allow for client side encryption. Differential storage. Storage of optional extra metadata such as permissions and owner without the need of support on the underlying storage. Splitting data for large files into multiple files (say, to support large file backup onto old FAT USB drives for maximum platform compatibility). etc... And as a secondary type of backup the client could also handle simple backup to a USB filesystem with no extra support besides simple backup of the data.
* Local storage like USB drives could be use as one form of simple backup. As well people can backup to their own home storage (if they have any). And the server could be launched on servers of various hosting providers.
* Local family storage could be setup by adding a simple plug computer to the home connected to a USB drive. Even if you did not open up the system to the outside internet your computers would backup themselves while you are at home and when you leave with your computer, simply wait to continue.
* Leaving most of the user useful stuff to the client, multiple backup providers could start up. They would use the server protocol and allow backups to be stored off-site on their systems. And competition could help ensure that they all offer sane prices. Since the client makes it relatively trivial to move to a new one.
* A bonus would be support for backing up things that are not always there. eg: Backing up the contents of a USB drive while it's not there. #backupandrecovery #backupandrecovery #backupandstorage