Introduction to BigCloud Archives Online

BigCloud Archives Online is a low-cost subscription service that allows you to backup your archives to a secure Cloud hosted by Amazon. You may create up to 99 Clouds with your subscription, each with a unique name, and each of them may be designated Private, Shared or Public.

To activate a copy of BigCloud Archives to use with an Online subscription, go to, click the Subscribe link at the top of the page and enter your Amazon username and password. If you are already subscribed, you can retrieve as many authorization keys as you like for as many computers as you like - otherwise you will be invited to sign up for a subscription.  Once you have activated a copy of BigCloud archives, you can access Clouds.

Use Private clouds to back up personal files; these clouds are only accessible from computers where you have entered an activation code from your subscription. Shared clouds allow you to grant read or write access to up to 30 or more other subscribers by their email address or Amazon ID - great for family photo albums.  Public clouds are visible to any other BigCloud subscriber - you can use these for publishing, like a multimedia blog.  All a person needs to know to access a Public Cloud, or a Shared Cloud they are permitted to see, is the name of the Cloud.

Setting up a Cloud

To create a cloud, you can either go the Clouds screen of the Preferences dialog (under the Edit menu), or select "Backup to BigCloud Archives Online" in the Backup section of Archive Settings (also under the edit menu). In either place you will see a list of your existing clouds, and you can click "Create Cloud" to add a new one. When you create the cloud you assign its Name and whether you want it to be stored in US or European data centers. These settings cannot be changed later, except to delete and recreate the cloud, which will erase all the data backed up to it.

Once the Cloud is created, the Edit Cloud dialog appears, where you can choose to make the Cloud Shared or Public, or keep it private.  You can grant additional access to users for Shared and Public Clouds using the "add user" button and checkboxes for read, write and share access levels.  A user with "share" access can add additional users to the cloud. You can also enable "Requester Pays" for Shared or Public Clouds so that other users pay for the bandwidth they consume when they access your Cloud.  These settings can be changed any time.