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Nothing can ever work without failure, and your website is not an exception. When we deal with websites, on the one hand, we often deal with precious data that must be kept in any case; on the other hand, it’s also essential for your site to remain constantly online, to operate without serious interruptions, or to avoid crashes and downtime. In order to minimize all these risks, the concept of backup has been introduced. Now, your data and other important files are kept in a different safe place, and if anything, they can be always restored from there. If you have a well-set-up backup policy, you can calmly live without the fear that your data gets lost or your site is down for an indefinite period. In today’s article, we are going to have a look at what a web hosting backup policy is and how it can provide you with safe and stable operation of your website.
What Is A Backup Policy And Why It’s Needed?
The concept of backup policy is used to designate the way your hosting provider provides you with backup. For example, even if we exclude the cases of emergency, there might be cases when you need an urgent backup. In case you accidentally deleted a file or uninstalled an important application, a good hosting provider will provide you with a backup of your data, so your website can go back to its normal operation in the shortest time possible.
The Role Of Web Hosting Backup
With a good backup policy, you can no longer worry about the destiny of your website whatever happens: errors, hardware crashes, and even hacking issues. You can feel secure that your website’s operation will be restored within minutes.
The Variety Of Backup Technologies
Just like files directly involved in the website’s operations, the backup copies of them have to be stored on physical drives. The physical drives have to be purchased by the provider, paid for if you rent them, and maintained – all this needs attention and resources, and therefore, not to waste the drives, various backup technologies have been developed to maximize the efficiency of the backup policy. Let’s have a look at them.
- Full server backup. It supposes creating a full copy of your server, with all your files, databases, and application data contained on it, on another server. It’s great to have the whole data to restore at your disposal, but creating such a backup copy each time will take up a lot of time. That’s why we have also a few that can be referred to as intermediate backup methods.
- Incremental backup. Incremental backup is the backup approach that only saves what has been changed since the previous backup. It can be applied either based on a full server backup or only focusing on the recent changes. The advantage of this method is that it’s the fastest way to back up your data, so you can perform it as often as possible.
- Differential backup like the incremental deals with data that has been changed, but not since any previous backup as such, but since the last full backup. Although it takes more time to create such a backup, it is easier to restore the data with it in case of data loss, because for the full restoration you only require the last full and the last differential backup.
- This one is the type of backup that only deals with your databases and files they consist of – texts, images, etc.
- On-site data backup means that your data is stored on another server of the same company.
- Off-site data backup or Database-only backup. This means that your data is stored on a third-party server somewhere else, often these are cloud services like Amazon Web Services (AWS), Microsoft Azure, and others.
What Do You Have To Look For In A Backup Policy?
The type of backup you need depends on what kind of site you host. If it’s a static site that you are not going to change a lot after its start, then just a single full-site backup will do. In case you eventually update something, you can just do another full backup.
If, for example, you are going to post something on a regular basis, it’s best to opt for incremental backup and set it up to back up every night or in some other way to fit the frequency of your site’s updates.
If we compare the on-site data backup and off-site data backup, there isn’t a big deal of difference between those two types as to the quality of service you need. The only situation where the difference between them matters is probably a “disaster” occurring to the on-site backup provider, so both the server of your website and the backup server break. This isn’t, however, very likely to happen. But still, if you feel too worried about the safety of some particular data of extraordinary importance, then off-site backup may be an option.
Backup is the only guarantee of the security of the whole data of your site. That’s why, when looking for a hosting provider, you have to study carefully their backup policy in order to choose what suits you best. We hope that this article has provided you with a better idea of what the latter can be. Our own recommendation of a company with a reliable and flexible data policy would be hostzealot, so check them out. Thank you for your attention! Take care!