Athena Backup is available for Windows and Mac

Athena Backup Technical Details

Athena at a Glance

  • Available for Windows computers (all 32-bit versions of Windows XP and Windows Vista) and Apple Macintosh computers (OS X versions 10.4 and 10.5).
  • Files backed up by a Windows computer can be restored to a Macintosh computer, and vice versa.
  • Keeps multiple versions of files in secure storage
  • Detects duplicate files stored in more than one location
  • Requires no action from you after it has been installed
  • File encryption ensures that only you can access your files
  • Your data is not lost if you lose a computer

Athena System Components

Athena Backup is a secure Internet backup solution for protecting your digital photographs, music, and other irreplaceable files. Athena Backup consists of:

  • A client application installed on your computer
  • Athena's account servers
  • Athena's secure file storage in five data centers across the Unites States

A single Athena customer account can protect up to five computers. The Athena client application is available for both Windows PCs (Windows 2000, XP, and Vista) and Apple Macintosh computers (OS X 10.4 and up). A file backed up by a Windows computer can be restored to a Macintosh computer, and vice versa. In addition, a file backed up from one of your computers can be restored to:

  • The same computer
  • One of the other computers protected under your account
  • A new computer added to the account later on

Backing Up Files

After installing the Athena client application on a computer you choose which folders or files on your computer will be backed up. All new files added to those backed up folders will also be backed up, and if a backed up file changes, that new version is backed up as well. Athena can keep multiple versions of files in secure storage so that if a file is accidentally overwritten you can easily restore an older version.

Duplicate File Detection

Athena can detect duplicate files stored in more than one location on a single computer, or on more than one of the computers in your account. A file needs to be backed up only once because Athena remembers the various locations in which a file is found. Duplicate files are detected by comparing the cryptographic hashes of the file contents, so duplicate files will be detected even if the names of two files differ. Detecting duplicate files accelerates the speed of backups and reduces Athena’s Internet bandwidth usage.

Continuous and Automatic

Athena continuously monitors backed up folders for file changes and backs up new and changed files ‘in the background’ to ensure that the latest versions of files are uploaded to secure storage as soon as possible. While most conventional backup solutions require the user to remember to manually back up all of his or her computers at regular intervals, Athena requires no action from you after it has been installed. This makes Athena the easiest and most convenient backup solution available.

For convenience, you can pause the Athena client application at any time, leaving all your Internet bandwidth available to other programs. Alternatively, you can tell Athena to use as much or as little of your Internet bandwidth as you like for faster backups and restores, or for unobtrusive operation. You can also tell Athena to scan for file changes on a fixed schedule that you define (instead of continuously) although the continuous backup provides optimal protection.

Encryption Information

When a file is backed up it is divided into chunks, each chunk is individually encrypted, and the encrypted chunks are then uploaded to a secure storage server. Athena's file encryption uses the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES), a high-grade cryptographic cipher relied upon by governments and financial institutions worldwide. File encryption ensures that only you can access your files. Dividing files into chunks mean that if a large file changes, only the changed chunks need to be re-backed up, saving time and network bandwidth.

The encryption key used to secure your files is stored on Athena's account server so that it is available to all computers in your account, and so that it is not lost if you lose a computer. Your encryption key is itself encrypted using your account password. If you change your account password your encryption key remains the same and there is no need to backup your files again. If you wish, you can choose to secure your encryption key with a second password that is different from your account password. This has the advantage that no one else, not even Athena Backup, knows the password. But, if you forget this encryption password we will be unable to help you recover the encryption key and you will lose access to all of your backup files.

Athena Backup is committed to your privacy and we do everything we can to ensure that only you can access your irreplaceable files.

Restoring Files

When restoring a file to any one of your computers, you can choose to restore the most recent version of the file or an earlier version. That file's encrypted chunks are downloaded from the secure storage server, each chunk is individually decrypted, and the chunks are then re-assembled into the original file.