Firewall Issues in Online Backup

I am using the term “firewall” to refer to any software or device that protects a computer from viruses, Trojans, external attacks, malware, evil websites, and other threats.

The Online Backup Guide for Service Providers is a complete 196-page guide on starting and operating an Online Backup Service – the latest revision of Rob Cosgrove’s industry defining RBS Book originally published in 1987. The entire book is being published here, chapter by chapter.


Firewalls are made by McAfee, Symantec, SonicWALL, Barracuda, Zone Alarm, Cisco, Linksys, and Norton, among others.

Firewalls are designed to stop programs from communicating with the Internet. Sometimes they can accidentally tag Online Backup software as “suspect” and stop it from running until someone authorizes it. It is always a good idea to do a test backup and restore after the software has been installed on a workstation or server.

RBackup and Mercury have “Test Connection” buttons that automatically do a backup and restore for testing firewalls.

Firewall software is, by nature, updated frequently. It is not uncommon for an update to a customer’s firewall, or a newly installed firewall, to interfere with the operation of Online Backup software. If a customer has been running properly for a while, then suddenly stops, first assume that a change has been made to the firewall, router, Internet connection, or operating system since the Online Backup software was installed.

It isn’t really your responsibility to correct problems with software you didn’t install, but you should be ready to do so anyway. Your customers don’t understand that it isn’t your fault, and the last thing they want to hear is, “Not my fault. Call Symantec tech support.”


Rob Cosgrove

Rob Cosgrove, CEO Remote Backup Systems

Rob Cosgrove is the President of Remote Backup Systems, founder of the Online Backup Industry, and a vocal advocate for maintaining the highest standards in Online Backup software. His latest book, the Online Backup Guide for Service Providers: How to Start and Operate an Online Backup Service, is available online now, on, and at bookstores.

Remote Backup Systems provides brandable, scalable software and solutions to MSPs and VARs enabling them to offer Online Backup Services.

Would you like a FREE download of the complete Online Backup Guide for Service Providers as an E-Book? Only 200 available through May 15. [PICK THIS LINK].

About The Author

Rob Cosgrove /

Rob Cosgrove is President of Remote Backup Systems, developers of the fully brandable RBackup Online Backup software platform, powering more than 9,500 Service Providers, MSPs and VARs wordwide since 1987. He is the founder of the Online Backup industry and author of several books, the most recent, "The Online Backup Guide for Service Providers", available at and bookstores.