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How long does it take to back up?


Article ID: 000003407

Date: 02/07/2013

Mozy is designed to operate in the background while you continue to use the computer. Mozy is also able to resume a backup after a computer is turned back on or wakes up after going to sleep. If there is an urgent need to complete your backup, or if you are curious about how long the backup will take, here is some information that will help estimate the time for the first backup.  

Because each situation is different there is no one solid answer for this question. A backup of 10 GB may take one person two days and another person two weeks; it mainly depends on your upload speeds. We've found that the average backup speed is around 2-4 GB backed up per 24 hour period.

A great way to get an idea of your backup speed is to perform a bandwidth test. The following information isn't a guarantee of speed, but will provide a close estimate.

  1. Go to
  2. Find a star/pyramid in Utah (either St. George area or Salt Lake City area is fine).
  3. Once the trace is done, take note of the upload speed, typically the second, smaller, number (measured in Mb/s).
  4. Now go to T1Shopper - Download Calculator.
  5. In the File Size field enter how much data your are trying to upload, and in the next field specify file size unit (Example: For 10 GB, enter 10 in the File Size field and then select "Gigabytes" in the next list box).
  6. Choose the speed that is closest to your upload speed found in step 3. The speeds here are measured in Kbps (Kb/s). Since measures in Mb/s you'll have to convert's speed by moving the decimal to the right three points (Example: If says your upload speed is 1.4 Mb/s then your speed in Kb/s is 1400 Kbps).
  7. In the Resulting Time field you should see how long your backup would take if you maintain that speed.

The more a computer is used the longer the first backup will take. As a general rule, add 1.5x - 2x the time to the number that shows up to get a more realistic number.

Example: I have 10 GBs and my upload speed is 1400 Kbps. I type 10, select Gigabytes, then select 1.544 Mbps (since that is the closest to my speed), and I see my expected time is: 15 hours 27 minutes. If I add 1.5x - 2x I would expect my backup to be done in 23 - 31 hours, assuming the backup isn't interrupted and my speed doesn't drop below 1400 Kbps.

Once your initial backup is complete, Mozy will no longer need to back up the entirety of your data -- just new and changed files. That means the backups that run every day after your initial backup is done will finish after a few minutes to few hours depending on how many new and/or changed files there are since the last backup.

For more information about getting started with Mozy, see (MozyHome / MozyPro).

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