Differences between Cloud Storage and Cloud Backup

There aren’t any specific differences between cloud and online backups, rather these names have been adopted by the industry over years.

Cloud Storage Vs Cloud Backup

Cloud backups and storage are, in general more generic terms for simple file system backups such as Dropbox or OneDrive. You might not have the option for unlimited versions and retention periods (history) on your files. and you should expect to purchase a quota larger than you intend to use.

Online backups are normally more rigid in their approach. With an online backup system, you will be able to backup other data sets as well as simple file systems. These could be Windows system state, bare metal (image) or MSSQL on Microsoft systems. You can expect other advanced modules which can backup NAS modules devices and other specific hardware devices, virtualisation agents (Hyper V or VMware), as well as a selection of cloud agents like Office 365 and cloud-to-cloud.

Online backups will also store your data on a robust storage platform. Examples of the storage used by our software and the Governments, Police, Military, Medical etc, are Microsoft Azure and Amazon AWS. Some cloud backup providers still use their own storage.

If your provider uses their own storage facilities and hardware but doesn’t tell you where it is or what hardware is used, then you might want to dig a bit deeper. Why would they hide their tech from a customer?

Online backup systems will also give you the option to store your backups wherever you like. You might want to let your online backup provider manage your storage or you might want to store it on your own hardware or a 3rd party cloud such as Azure or AWS.

Retention offerings also set online backups apart from cloud storage backups. An online backup system which will allow you to comply with data retention policies stipulated by your local laws and your insurer’s rules must give you the option of unlimited retention history.

Terminology for cloud and online backup

The most common names are cloud backup, cloud computer backup, remote backup and online backup. A full search on alternative names is shown at the bottom.

What is the cloud?

The cloud should allow you to create compute resources when you want to. When you no longer requires resources and you delete them, the freed-up space and compute power will be made available to other users of that cloud, Cloud resources expand and contract on demand as you need them.

The cloud provider’s responsibilities are to always have enough capacity to accommodate all customer demands for computer power, RAM, storage, and networking. They keep plugging in new hardware at the backend and repair or replace faulty hardware when detected.

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