Bitcasa: A Complete Tour

01
of 08

Welcome to Bitcasa Screen

Screenshot of the Welcome to Bitcasa screen
Welcome to Bitcasa Screen.

Update: The Bitcasa service has been discontinued. You can read more about it at the Bitcasa Blog.

After you've installed Bitcasa, this "Welcome to Bitcasa" screen is what you'll see the first time you're asked what you'd like to backup.

You can select the option called "All my folders" to backup your contacts, desktop, documents, downloads, favorites, music, etc., or you can choose the Select button to manually pick which of those that you'd like to backup (like what you see in this screenshot).

Click or tap Not Now to pick these folders later and not start backing up right now. 

Start Mirroring will start the backup of the selected folders right away.

02
of 08

Menu Options

Screenshot of the Bitcasa menu options
Bitcasa Menu Options.

Opening the Bitcasa shortcut on your computer will only open the backup folder, not the settings and other available options from within the program itself.

To make changes to Bitcasa, like to pause backups, check for program updates, and edit settings, you must right-click the taskbar icon like you see in this screenshot.

"Open Bitcasa Drive" will simply show you the virtual hard drive Bitcasa installed to your computer. That's where you'll find all the files that are in your account from all the devices you're backing up.

View your account in a web browser with the "Access Bitcasa on the Web" option. This is one way you can view your files, change your password, and manage your account.

"Search Bitcasa" opens a search box you can use to quickly find files you've backed up. This is a very simple search tool, letting you search by name only, not by file extension or date.

The total amount of storage you have left on your account can be seen from this menu, and you learn more about upgrading your Bitcasa plan to one with more space from the "Upgrade Now" option.

Access the general, advanced, network, and account settings by clicking or tapping the "Settings" option. Some of the following slides go into more detail about these settings.

Through the "More" menu are options for putting a pause on all backups, updating the Bitcasa software, and closing out of the program altogether.

03
of 08

Uploads Screen

Screenshot of the Bitcasa uploads screen
Bitcasa Uploads Screen.

When your folders are being backed up to Bitcasa, this is the screen that is shown on your computer.

You're able to view the progress of the uploads as well as pause them or cancel them completely.

04
of 08

General Settings Tab

Screenshot of the Bitcasa General settings tab
Bitcasa General Settings Tab.

Basic settings can be toggled on and off through the "General" tab of Bitcasa's settings.

The first option is enabled by default so Bitcasa will start when your computer starts. That way, your files can be backed up all the time and you don't have to worry about opening the software just to keep your backups running.

From the next section, "Disable all notifications," if selected, will suppress the constant notifications that popup when your files are being backed up. For example, when you begin mirroring a folder with your Bitcasa account, the notification "Mirroring started..." will show each time. If this option is selected, these kinds of notifications will no longer be shown.

Also from the "Notifications" section, you can enable the option called "Disable warning messages on exit" so that when you exit the Bitcasa program, you won't be shown a confirmation box asking if you're sure you want close the it. Leave this unchecked to make sure you don't accidentally exit Bitcasa, potentially leaving your files not backed up.

By default, Bitcasa opens a "Copy drive contents" window each time a USB device like a flash drive is plugged in. This makes it really easy to copy the entire drive into your Bitcasa account. To disable this automatic prompt, uncheck the "Automatically detect external drives" option.

The option called "Allow other users access" lets the other user accounts on the computer view and open your Bitcasa Drive, so long as at least one user account is logged on and signed on to the Bitcasa account.

If enabled, it also lets them copy files into your account and create folders. However, it does not give them the ability to mirror folders like you can under the user account that is signed on to the Bitcasa account.

As would seem obvious, disabling, or unchecking, the last option in Bitcasa's "General" tab, called "Show mirror progress window automatically," will prevent progress windows from displaying each time a folder is being mirrored.

Normally, a small window displays that shows the overall progress of each folder you're uploading and lets you pause or cancel them. Unchecking this option will stop those windows from showing automatically, but you can still view them by hovering your mouse over the Bitcasa taskbar icon.

05
of 08

Advanced Settings Tab

Screenshot of the Bitcasa Advanced settings tab
Bitcasa Advanced Settings Tab.

To change Bitcasa's cache, drive letter, and power management settings, you'll access the "Advanced" tab.

The options under the "Cache" section are managed by the Bitcasa program by default, but you're able to manipulate the size and location of the cache if you wish.

When copying a file to your Bitcasa Drive, the file will first copy to this cache location before being encrypted, broken up into small "blocks" of data, and then uploaded to your account.

The purpose of this is two fold: to encrypt your data and to provide a way to support de-duplication, which is a process that prevents uploading blocks of data twice if the same data already exists on your account, which saves bandwidth and time.

You can change the size of the cache folder to provide a greater space for these processes to work. Changing the location lets you pick a hard drive that has enough space to support the size you choose.

The "Drive Letter" section simply lets you change the letter that Bitcasa uses to display itself as an extra storage device on your computer. For example, "C" is normally the letter used for the hard drive with the operating system installed to it. Any available letter can be used for your Bitcasa Drive as well.

"Power Management" is the final portion of the "Advanced" tab. This lets you decide whether Bitcasa should keep your computer awake during uploads. If selected, you can optionally ensure it only stays awake if it's plugged in.

06
of 08

Network Settings Tab

Screenshot of the Bitcasa Network settings tab
Bitcasa Network Settings Tab.

This is the "Network" tab of Bitcasa's settings. Use this tab to limit the upload bandwidth that Bitcasa is allowed to use.

If left unselected, no upload limit will be imposed. However, if you do place a check next to this setting, and then define a limit, Bitcasa will not exceed that speed when uploading files to your online account.

If Bitcasa seems to be slowing down your Internet connection, you may want to enable this limit. If you want your files to backup as fast as your network will allow, you'll want to disable this limit (not check it). 

07
of 08

Account Settings Tab

Screenshot of the Bitcasa Account settings tab
Bitcasa Account Settings Tab.

The "Account" tab in the settings of Bitcasa's program contains basic information about your account.

Under the "Account Information" section is your name, email address, the amount of storage you're currently using in your account, and the account type you have.

The "Computer Name" section of this tab lets you change the description you're using for this computer, which is useful if you're using Bitcasa on multiple devices so as to differentiate between them.

This is also the part of Bitcasa you'll want to access if you need to log out of your account.

Note: I've removed my personal information from this screenshot for privacy reasons.

08
of 08

Sign Up for Bitcasa

Bitcasa Logo
© 2013 Bitcasa. © 2013 Bitcasa

Bitcasa isn't my favorite service, at least when focusing on cloud backup over some of its cloud-storage-standard syncing features.

That said, it's super, super easy to use which may be enough to get you excited about it.

Sign Up for Bitcasa

You can find everything important about Bitcasa in my review of the service, including updated pricing and feature information.

Here are some other online backup resources I've put together that you might also find helpful:

Still have questions about BItcasa or online backup in general? Here's how to get a hold of me.