What is the Smart Backup?
Smart Backup is a backup type that combines the full, differential and incremental backup methods along with cleanup operations, in order to efficiently manage the backups according to the backup settings and the available disk space. The advantage of the Smart Backup is that you don't need to worry about the number of backups to store, which backup version to clean, and which backups to merge, as Backup4all will take care of that. The Smart Backup type starts with a Full Backup.
Description of the Smart Backup Type
It would be ideal to make full backups all the time because they are the most extensive and are self-contained. However, the amount of time it takes to run full backups often prevents us from using this backup type. Full backups are often restricted to a weekly or monthly schedule. However, the increasing speed and capacity of backup media are making it more feasible to perform these full backups overnight.
Full backups, if you have the time to perform them, offer the best solution for data protection. In effect, a single backup is sufficient to completely restore all backed-up files.
The algorithm takes in consideration the destination size and follows a specific configuration for selecting the backup type to be performed. The configuration dictates the following:
- Full backup - if the sizes of last differential and all incremental backups since last full/differential exceeds 80% of the full backup size.
- Differential backup - if there isn't a last differential and the size of all incremental backups since last full exceeds 30% of the full size, a differential backup will be executed.
- Differential backup - if there is a last differential and the size of all incremental backups since last differential exceeds 50% of the last differential size, a new differential will be executed.
The maximum allowed size of the backups can be defined as an absolute value or as a percentage of the space available in the destination.
- It automatically decides the best backup type to be executed
- The free disk space in the destination is properly managed, so you won't get any errors for running out of space
- You cannot select how many backup/file versions to be saved
- Backup4all may create less efficient backup versions given the available space
Configuring a Smart Backup
The output of the Smart Backup is a compressed zip file container. You can select the zip compression ratio from the Compression page in Backup Properties. Backup4all can also encrypt the backup archives. This gives you the option to protect your backed up data from being stolen and used.
The following options can be used to limit the maximum space to be occupied by the backup in the destination:
- Limit backup size to... % of destination size (default is 80%)
- Limit backup size to... KB/MB/GB (default is 50 GB)