Thursday, December 27, 2007

Beta 11 - Major Update

We are very happy to announce that beta 11 of Backup Nexus is now available for download!

This is a major update for bun; virtually every aspect of the program has been revamped and polished. This new version is faster, more reliable, gives you more feedback about the backup progress, while still retaining the priority of keeping backup easy to do.

We have also added storage sharing with this new version. Currently, bun may use up to 2 GB of your disk space to back up files for other people on the network. (Note that the ratio and amount may change in a later version).

Because this is a major update, you will have to uninstall the previous version of Backup Nexus (beta 10, released back in October) before installing beta 11. To ensure that you uninstall the previous version cleanly, first quit Backup Nexus. If you are on Windows, you can then execute the uninstaller, which will fully uninstall the program. If you are on Linux or Mac, open up your command prompt and type in "rm -rf ~/.backupnexus" to delete the old configurations.

Beta 11 was originally scheduled to be released in early 2008. We could not have released it early, without the help of our early beta testers (you know who you are). Thanks.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Beta 11 Preview

In the past few months, we have been focusing on developing the next generation of bun. However, since we have been so quiet, you may be curious about what we have been up to.

The development of beta 11 is drawing to a close. We are now concentrating on testing bun in the lab. Since the features are now finalized, we would also like to give you a preview of what you can expect from the next beta.

Beta 11 is a big enhancement over the previous version of bun. Here is an partial list:
  • Much better performance, thanks to the use of a new database layer that speeds performance by 20% or more.
  • Higher compression ratio makes storage more efficient and backup transfer faster.
  • Advanced and multiple layers of encryptions and checksum protects the confidentiality and integrity of your files.
  • Network folder registration saves you from having to remember what folder you previously backed up.
  • Better and more accurate statistics on how many of your files have been backed up
  • Many bug fixes that improves stability and functionalities (with special thanks to the beta testers who gave us the feedback).
Beta 11 is going through testing right now. If we do not encounter any significant problem, it should be available for download early next year.

Overall, the coming months will be an exciting time for bun, and we look forward to bringing you the result of our hard work.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Server Problem and Re-Login

On Sunday night, the server component of Backup Nexus began to experience problem. Eventually, the server crashed and we were forced to restart the server.

The bun client has a feature, whereby if you have the wrong password, it will restart itself and prompt you to re-login (since if you have the wrong password, your backup data will be corrupted). However, there is a bug in the detection: the bun client considers any login failure, whether resulting from network failure or wrong password, to result in the need to re-login. Because of the recent server problem, you may have noticed that your bun client has prompted you to login again. If you see the screen, simply login again. Once you login successfully, backup of your files will resume. In addition, any files that you have previously backed up continue to be available, so you do not need to worry about data loss.

Sorry for the inconvenience. This login bug has been fixed in the latest developmental version of bun and should be deployed when the next beta comes out.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Beta 10 - Minor Update

This is just to let you know that we have released beta 10 of Backup Nexus, or bun.

Just like beta 9, this is yet another minor update. Most of the changes are internal improvements. In response to your feedback, we have also tuned down the frequency of popup notification, so there won't be too many messages telling you that bun has just started up or finished backing up a folder.

As usual, the update has been made available through the self-update site, so you should receive this update automatically.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Beta 9 - Little Tweaks

We have made beta 9 release of bun (Backup Nexus) available. This is a minor update, made to fine tune some of the major features that we introduced back in beta 8. A cursory overview of the changes in this release:
  • For maximum safety, whenever a file is deleted or overwritten by bun, it is moved to the trash or recycle bin instead. Check your trash bin if you can't find a file and suspect that it may have been deleted accidentally.
  • Fixed a bug so that directory deletion are now detected.
  • Small bug fixes and other internal improvements.
As usual, this update is available via the self-update feature of bun, so if you are running bun, you should have received this update automatically.

This is also the first release to integrate some of the backend enhancements, which we posted about a few months ago. Bun is also running in our new data center with better connectivity and computing power. For now, the integration is only superficial, but stay tuned, as we gradually bring more of the new backend online.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Beta 8 - Simplicity and Visibility

Another month, another beta release of bun (Backup Nexus). This time, the new release is packed with new features.

The biggest change in this beta is the simplification of the backup process. Before this version, there was an awkward separation between two types of folders, one used for backup and the other for restore. This distinction was making things more complicated than necessary. In addition, files that were long-ago deleted would come back when you restore the folder.

Instead, in this release, we have consolidated the two types of folders. Now, you just add a folder, and bun automatically does the right thing. New files are automatically backed up. If you add the same folder to a different computer, your files will be restored. We have also implemented Distributed Deletion Detection, so that files that you have deleted will not come back again.

Of course, this enhancement is not the only new feature in beta 8. The following is a list of new changes in beta 8:
  • File browser
  • Download browser
  • Miscellaneous tweaks to the UI
  • Internal enhancements for better stability
As usual, this update is provided via self-update, which means that by the time you read this, your bun should already be at the latest version.

Sunday, July 8, 2007

Beta 7 Available - Interim release with minor changes

A new beta version has been released. We are still working on the backend overhaul, but this is an interim release to improve bun for the current beta users. Some of the changes include:
  • Streamlined interior for better responsiveness
  • Dashboard now displays status information for folders
  • More tweaks to make bun runs more stably
If you were running beta 6 previously, the self-update feature of bun should have already updated installation to beta 7, so you need not do anything.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Summer Development Roadmap

This is an update on the development for Backup Nexus, or bun.

Our focus for the past few months has been to bring bun up to a baseline level of usability. Because the focus was on polishing bun, we were making rapid releases every two weeks. All of this culminated in beta 6 last week, which is now in a very stable state.

Since we have gotten bun to the baseline level functionality, the development focus for the next few months will be shifting to the back-end. Some of our plans include bringing a faster server cluster online, which would help with connectivity. In addition, the back-end enhancement will allow us to quicken our pace of future development and push out some truly exciting features, which we have been craving to work on ever since bun was conceived. A new web site is also in the making.

What does all this mean for you? It means that in the immediate future, there will be a less frequent release of bun. During this time, beta 6 is fully supported and you can continue to use it. The project will look quiet from the outside, but rest assured we are working hard on the inside.

The best is yet to come.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Beta 6 Available

Fresh from the oven, we bring you another release of bun (that's what we call Backup Nexus in the lab).

Bun, I mean, pun intended :).

This is another solid release, incorporating several enhancements:
  • General performance improvements
  • Better compression ratio for your files
  • Multiple-platform support for Mac, Windows and Linux
We are very excited about this release of bun. It is the first release with versions for Mac and Linux, in addition to the existing Windows version. We have worked hard on integrating bun with both Linux and Mac desktops, so that it plays well with your environment.

If you are a Mac user, simply unpack the .dmg image and drag the .app file to your Applications folder. You can then start bun by launching it from your Application folder. As a bonus, bun will set itself to start when you login to your Mac desktop, so you need not remember to run it every time you log in.

If you are a Linux user, this release is a bit spartan in the way of installer, but that's probably the way you want it anyway. Simply download the tarball, unpack to /usr/local (or any location of your choosing), and run the script to start bun. The only extra steps you need to do is to make sure that you have a way to launch the BackupNexus script when your login to your desktop (instructions available for GNOME, KDE, and other desktops).

You can download bun for Windows, Mac, or Linux here.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Beta 5 Available

Beta 5 release of Backup Nexus (or as we affectionately calls it, bun) is now available. This is a substantial release, with a host of new enhancements:
  • Faster startup
  • Handle multi-thousand files with ease (up to tens of thousands)
  • Better notifications when backup or restore is happening
  • More compact encoding, now reduces storage and download size by 30% - 50%
  • Significantly reduced background memory usage when not doing any processing
  • General performance increase, thanks to a better execution engine
  • Many other miscellaneous small fixes and touches too
Given the amount of new features and improvements, this is one of the most exciting releases yet. As usual, the installer on the site has been updated. You can download it here.

(Note: this entry previously contained old release timeline, which is no longer current)

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Beta 4 Available

After a full week of hard work, beta 4 is now ready! This release includes the following enhancements:
  • Drastically reduced CPU usage, making it safe to run on laptops, even when on battery
  • Faster startup time
  • Direct support for special folders, such as Desktop or Home folders
  • Various tweaks for better stability
As always, you can download the latest version here.

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Beta 3 Available

Hot on the heels of beta 2, we have another new minor beta release ready. In this release:
  • Made the backup less frequent and thus less intrusive
  • Fixed issue with network connectivity
  • Resolved problem with automatic restarting
Due to changes in the way the program is launch, this beta release cannot be automatically update by beta 2 installation. Instead, please uninstall beta 2, and download the beta 3 installer from the download page to perform a fresh install. In the future, we will strive to keep automatic update working for the majority of the time, so you would not have to manually update Backup Nexus.

Monday, April 30, 2007

Beta 2 Available

Beta 2 has just been released. This release features several enhancements and fixes, including:
  • Much faster sign up
  • A new overclock mode for when you when to quickly backup or restore files
  • Backup Nexus now tells you when and how many files it is backing up
  • A problem on computer with IPv6 network interface has been resolved
If you are running beta 1 right now, beta 2 should be an automatic update for you. In fact, by the time you read this announcement, your installation has most likely already been updated. If you haven't yet installed beta 1, you can download beta 2 here.

We are hard at work on beta 3. It should be out by the end of May. In the meantime, we are here to help. Send us an email at support [at] if you need anything.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Beta 1 Available

The beta 1 release of Backup Nexus is now available. You can download it here.

This release has undergone a good amount of testing and is fairly stable. Like any other beta software, there are a few small issues:
  • Automatic tuning not yet available. Backup Nexus still runs quietly in the background, but if you take your laptop mobile, it may drain your battery.
  • Occasionally, registration will come back with a connection error. The solution is to retry it again. In the worst case, you may need to wait 10 minutes before retrying.
Automatic update is enabled in this release, so as future beta and releases are rolled out, you should have them without needing to reinstall again.

As we continue to improve Backup Nexus, we want to hear about your experience with the beta. Please let us know by sending an email to feedback [at]

Monday, April 9, 2007

Backup Nexus Has Launched

Backup Nexus has launched.

The premise of Backup Nexus is an obvious one. Not enough of us back up our data, even as the data that we put on our hard drive become increasingly important. It takes just one hard drive crash to make a very bad week for any one of us.

Our mission is simple. We want to make backup universal.

To make backup universal, we want to eliminate all the obstacles. We do that by making backup software that is easy to use and completely free. Toward simplicity, we spend a lot of time working on making the backup process straightforward. We also plan to make backup free by allowing everyone to trade their unused hard drive space, of which we all have plenty, with backup space on each other's computers. By building software that is easy to use and a network that helps people turn unused disk space into useful backup space, we can make backup universal.

Our site is now up. An initial beta download will be released in the next few days.

Stay tuned.