One question we get asked often is “What is the difference between file sync and backup?” It is easy to mix up the 2 of them and yet both of them are very different in nature. We will attempt to address this question along with particular referrences to our products, Biz Sync (file sync) and Data Shelter (cloud backup) as examples.
File synchronization or sync for short is the process of ensuring that computer files in two or more locations are updated via certain rules. There are 2 types, they are 1 way sync which only copy files from 1 “source” device to the other “target” device, and 2 ways sync which transfer updated files between the devices. Biz Sync falls under the 2 way sync, which means any devices that Biz Sync is on will have the same files across them.
Let’s say you create a new file on a computer (device 1) that you used in the office, Biz Sync will transfer the files over your home laptop (device 2) or tablet (device 3). When you turned on your home laptop or tablet, the file will be there automatically ready for use.
Backup on the other hand is like a 1 way sync, files from the protected devices (example servers) are copied over to a backup location, for retrieve and recovery purposes. If your servers are protected with Data Shelter and anything happen to your files, such as computer crashes or accidental deletion, you simply retrieve the backup files from the Shelter.
Wait you may ask “Then isn’t file sync more supreme since it can do 2 way while backup only goes 1 way?” As mentioned at the start of this article, the 2 of them are very different in nature and the answer lies in the way they work.
Files sync are typically used for collaboration between teams, encouraging more employees productivity by enabling them to access and work on their files from any where at their own time, or sharing/sending larges files which are next to impossible with email.
Companies uses backups as part of their Business Continuity Planning (BCP) as it is designed to provide recovery functions when you needs it. As such they have more defined features to help them in this role. For example they are able to copy your database and open files that is being worked on, which are not possible for file sync to protect. For most backup system, if any backup fails or the files are not copy over correctly, they will try to back it up again and notify you via email. Although our Biz Sync are capable of keeping different versions of a files for back tracking, most file sync tools are not able to perform that function which is a core part of backup.
At Blazon Technologies, we provide backup and file sync tools for our clients, giving them protection and enabling more efficient collaboration. To find out how we can help you with data protection and collaboration, contact us for more information.