Backup types and strategy examples

This article is mentioned in What is a Data Backup?, but only as a bullet point. This separate article is available for easier reference to what may seem to be a complex topic.

Available job types

WinZip Job Types

WinZip's Job Wizard provides five predefined Job Types plus a Custom job type. The first two predefined types, Normal and Update, may be familiar to you as Zip file options. The other three job types; Full, Differential, and Incremental; are standard backup types. Carefully consider these different job types in order to determine the appropriate backup strategy for your needs.

Additional job type information:

  • You should create new Zip files or rotate through multiple Zip files when you run your backups. If you always replace the same Zip file and the backup process goes wrong or the Zip file becomes corrupt, you may not have a valid Zip file when you need it. See the examples below for backup strategies.
  • A Normal Backup or a Full Data Backup will require the most storage space, as they will always zip all of the selected files.
  • An Incremental Backup will only back up the files that have changed since the last Full Backup or Incremental Backup; therefore the storage requirements for these Zip files are usually the smallest.
  • A Differential Backup will back up all of the files that have changed since the last Full or Incremental Backup. Since it does not reset the archive attribute of the files, storage requirements for differential backup archives will generally be greater than for incremental backup archives.

Differential backup example:

  • A Full Backup is run on Sunday, and then a Differential Backup is run on Monday. The Monday "differential" Zip file will contain any files that have been added or have changed from Sunday (after the full backup) to Monday. Another Differential Backup is run on Tuesday. Tuesday's Zip file will include all of the files that have changed between Sunday and Tuesday. In other words, the Tuesday file has all of the data that is in the Monday file plus everything that changed after the Monday backup was done. From this, you can see that differential Zip files may grow quite large depending on how often that a full or incremental backup is run and how many files change during that time period.

Example backup strategies

The examples below are some strategies that you could use for backing up data. Other options exist. You would need to choose a strategy that fits your needs and works for you.

Safety note: In all four strategies, you would also want to keep the older of the Full Data Backups off-site in case of an on-site disaster.

Strategy #2: If your incremental backup (Zip file 3) is damaged, you have only lost the data since the last Friday backup.

Strategy #3: If any incremental backup is lost or corrupt, you will still have all the changes from the other incremental backups and you only lose the data from the one Incremental Backup.

Strategy #4: If Zip files 3, 4, or 5 become lost or corrupt and Zip file 6 is still good, you haven't lost any data. If Zip file 6 becomes lost or corrupt, then, assuming Zip file 5 is still good, you will only lose the data from Thursday.

If you have any questions about this information, please submit a Technical Support ticket.

Related Articles:
Restoring Data from Backups
What is a Data Backup?
Backup (section)
Cloud Services and Backups

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