Let’s talk backups.With so much out there, and so many uses dependent to a large part on the need, it’s a little overwhelming. Are all backups created equally? Is a backup, a backup, a backup? Does it matter what you do, as long as you just do it?
Here are the different types of backup that software (see Acronis) fall into.
This is a mirrored image of a backup. It’s usually thought of in the physical sense and involves an exact physical copy or partition. When you install a disk imaging program an image of you r data is transferred byte by byte, dumping the raw data somewhere else.
In the past this imaging meant that even the unused space on a hard drive was backed up. This obviously led to HUGE imaging files, taking up lots of space and costing lots of money.
Now, disk imaging is able to interpret and eliminate those blocks of data, and even offer the ability to filter data. Since Disk imaging transfers raw data, it is great for doing encrypted backups.
This sort of backup is the backup you’re most familiar with. Want to backup those pictures or files? Boom! Just transfer files of data from one place to another.
Of course, file based backups are more than the basic transfer of files. At least, they can be. Much of the file based backup software on the market allows you to automate backups and do it effortlessly, and even add encryption. You can compress files and choose incremental or differential backups, or delta style, or cumulative or binary patching.
File based backups are flexible. They can do ALL THE THINGS or simply plug that mess up and transfer a few files. It’s up to you. This type of backup also makes it easy to transfer files across different hardware or technologies.
This sort of backup is completely specialized. It’s a bit of an adaptation of file based backup, but then again in some ways it’s not quite a true backup in the same sense. This type of backup basically saves and synchronizes specific types of files.
While its specific uses may not seem like a good thing, it can improve productivity if special detail is needed with certain types of files. Plus, sync can occur in real-time and to online sources that are accessible with a smart phone.
So, are all backups created equally? I’d say not, but that’s a good thing. Some people really prefer disk imaging to all others, but it’s all a matter of need. Find your need, do your thing. Just remember to do something and back it up.