Essential Guide

FAQ: Backing up virtual servers today

A comprehensive collection of articles, videos and more, hand-picked by our editors
Q

How image-level backup differs from traditional backup

Marc Staimer looks at the differences between image-level backup and traditional backup in this Expert Response.

FROM THE ESSENTIAL GUIDE:

FAQ: Backing up virtual servers today

GUIDE SECTIONS

  1. VM backup today
  2. Glossary
+ Show More

What is an image-level backup and how is it different from traditional backup?

Image-level backup is a snapshot. There are three different kinds of snapshots: Copy-on-write (COW), Redirect-on-write (ROW), and clones. COW and ROW really are taking only a copy of the pointers of what the data looked like at that point in time. There is no real copy of the data although COW will create one over time as changes to that original data occur. Clones are complete copies of the data.

Traditional backup refers to creating a full copy of data. Today, backup software typically backs up all of the files on a server including the hidden files one time, then backs up any changes since the previous backup.

The differences between the two technologies show up in restores. A snapshot has to be mounted to recover any of the data. For single file recoveries, which are more than 90% of the restores per Symantec's recent research, traditional backup (also known as file-level backup), is a better data protection solution because only that single file needs to be restored.

For system-level restores, image backups or snapshots are much faster and easier to restore. It's not an either or and they are not mutually exclusive. Many backup software products provide both image and file backup as well as file and image restores.

This was last published in December 2013

PRO+

Content

Find more PRO+ content and other member only offers, here.

Essential Guide

FAQ: Backing up virtual servers today

GUIDE SECTIONS

  1. VM backup today
  2. Glossary

Have a question for an expert?

Please add a title for your question

Get answers from a TechTarget expert on whatever's puzzling you.

You will be able to add details on the next page.

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

By submitting you agree to receive email from TechTarget and its partners. If you reside outside of the United States, you consent to having your personal data transferred to and processed in the United States. Privacy

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

SearchSolidStateStorage

SearchConvergedInfrastructure

SearchCloudStorage

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

SearchITChannel

Close