What are backups?

steven.davidson@d-isla.co.uk, Saturday, November 30th, 2019


Backups are where you take point in time copy of data. You have the original and a copy. The copy is considered the backup. Should the original break or be lost for any reason you can revert to the copy (backup)

For example if I created an important word document which was saved on my computer and then emailed a copy of this to my Google mail account this could for all sense and purposed be considered a backup. If the hard drive died in my computer I would still have the copy (backup) of my word document in my Google mail account.

However backing up lots of data to an email account might work for a few docs but tricky to managed for lots of data.

There are many things you need to consider when setting up or designing a backup solution.

  • What are you backing up?
  • How big is the data you are backing up?
  • Does the data need to be encrypted?
  • Does GDPR apply to the data you are backing up?
  • Where does the backup data need to be accessible from?
  • Should the data be offsite (my recommendation yes)?
  • How often do you need to backup?
  • How long do you need to retain the backed up data?
  • How often should you test recovering backed up data?

A lot of the above apply to setting up backups for a business solution. For a home user its usually much simpler.

I can recommended either Dropbox or Google Drive. Both these solutions allow for folder to be accessible on your computer system which anything placed within is synced (copied – backed up) to Google Drive or Dropbox.

Dropbox and Google Drive are both Cloud Storage providers. The provide storage which is accessible from anywhere on the cloud (internet) rather than traditional storage which is accessible from a single network location without complex network configurations.

You can gets apps for your phone and tablet for these applications also allow automated backup of photos and access to upload and modify files with these cloud storage providers.

These cloud storage solutions allow sharing of data between family and friends with shared folders being available to facilitate this.

If your computer is lost then any data which was on your cloud storage provider is saved.

Both Google Drive and Dropbox also provide the facility to protect your data from accidental deletion. They allow recovery of any file synced to your Google Drive or Dropbox cloud storage for 30 days.

Dropbox goes one further in data protection in that it allows versions of documents that have simply changed to be recovered. This is a pretty neat feature as a fail safe if you accidentally overwrite and important document you can simply recover the previous version of this document. Again this is available to go back as far as 30 days.

Backups is one of my favourite subjects and if you have questions or would like to know more please get in contact and I would be more than happy to discuss further. You can reach me on 01522 898545

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