The question https://superuser.com/questions/540289/online-backup-services-that-cannot-access-your-data is not my question and was closed by a moderator but I feel that the question is useful enough to fall in to the "allowable software recommendations" category. It is not just "I want software that does X" it actually is looking for an explanation on why or why not services offer backups like he is describing.

I put a answer in to a comment and would go in to more detail in my answer if I was not restricted to comment length and formatting restrictions.

2 Answers 2


This question is not related to the technology on the computer, but rather how the security design on the "other end" handles the data. How the agent software handles the security is irrelevant, as it's very much dependent on the overall security design of the online backup service.

Online backup services = off-topic.


Super User in the first instance does not deal with online backup services as a standalone question. It's one of the explicitly mentioned topics in the "what not to ask" section of the FAQ.

That it then asks for suggestions and/or recommendations on what services they can try, continues being off topic.

This still makes the question a shopping request (explicitly off topic), looking for an online service that meets the needs checklisted.

  • 1
    Can you quote where in the FAQ it states that a online backup provider is not allowed, the closest thing I saw was "websites or web services like Facebook, Twitter, and WordPress", however all three examples listed are services that are only accessible through a web browser and have no local presence on your machine. Where as every single backup solution I can think of must have some form of agent running on your machine. Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 6:04
  • Online backup is a webservice. And it's a shopping question.
    – random Mod
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 6:07
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    So should the 725 questions about FTP be closed too, what about the 369 questions tagged rsync? Both of those are web services too. Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 6:12
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    FTP is not a webservice, but a way to transfer over a network. But if you find any that ask to compare and contrast, point them out. Same with rsync
    – random Mod
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 6:14
  • @ScottChamberlain: The site rules are not static. In the past, it may have been possible to ask questions that, according to the current rules, have become off-topic. They are usually closed gradually when they are detected. I, myself, asked a software recommendation question a couple of years ago, which got closed after a year or so because of the updated rules.
    – TFM
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 6:29
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    I can run my own FTP and Rsync servers. I can even, in theory use either (though FTP in this case is stupid) for local file transfers. You're asking a question that demands a list of answers. "How would I keep data I have on the cloud secure" might be a better compromise I guess, since it would involve things you proactively do
    – Journeyman Geek Mod
    Commented Jan 23, 2013 at 8:53
  • so edit his question instead of closing it.ffs. Commented Feb 6, 2013 at 20:01
  • There are two off topic questions. Which should the edit be made in favour of when they both do not fit? @geo
    – random Mod
    Commented Feb 6, 2013 at 21:07

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