“If Windows OneCare is reasonably priced, plenty of consumers will be happy to forget all about viruses, firewalls, and file fragments and let the computer take care of itself.”
Just having a service ping me regularly to defrag and back up is helpful. And better for members of the family who may not think about that along the same lines as other things that fit into the rhythm of everyday technological lives.
Now, getting such a thing to work automatically with my LAN storage… that would be nice. I’ve had a number of customers and friends with small home networks say that the next barrier for them is to move away from writable disc back-up to doing more with their home network: PC back-up, storage and file serving (OK, they don’t call it “file serving” but “I want to access my ripped WMA collection in the office on my family room PC.”). In talking with customers at the local computer superstores (especially the ones that flag you down as you have some MS logoware on or similarly monikered paraphanalia dangling off of a belt) I’ve found that interest in personal back-up has reached an all-time high, almost in line with security and keeping their PCs up-to-date.
Perhaps it’s just the disaster scenarios everyone sees on the nightly news. That’s the one that triggered a recent discussion in a coffee line on “but what do I do to ensure that the stuff on my computer is still safe when my house falls into a giant sink hole?” Remote file storage is a great idea, but who has time to send discs to the bank vault? I’ve done that onle a couple of times, and that after hearing of a friend losing everything in a house fire.
Neat solutions are starting to emerge along the lines of ibackup’s offering, which does part of what I’d like, but better synchronization and integration with the PCs on my home network would be a real treat. Just increase the size to match the size of My Documents (anyone have less than 5GB these days? Surely, you jest…) and add a nice, secure web-enabled front end so I can access my files anywhere. It might even make migrating to a new PC that much easier.