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Many business owners are presented with the option to incorporate a Backup Disaster Recovery (BDR) service into their Disaster Recovery Plan. Oftentimes, these owners already have other backup solutions in place, such as cloud backup. So what’s the difference? Below we’ll explain why a BDR service isn’t the same as cloud backup, and highlight the advantages of each option. We’ll also delve into how both solutions work together to provide better, more comprehensive protection for you and your business. Let’s jump in!

Cloud Backup vs. BDR: What’s the Difference?

Cloud backup protects your data quickly and simply, acting as a first line of defense against data loss. Here are the chief benefits of cloud backup:

  • Your files are saved in an off-site location. This means that your data isn’t impacted by on-site disruptions such as accidental deletion by an employee on a work computer.
  • Data can be quickly restored after a disruption. If you lose a file, you can recover it by pulling it from the cloud and get back to work.
  • This solution is perfect for backing up and recovering files, while also providing several other benefits like ease-of-collaboration and remote access.

BDR replicates or “mirrors” your entire server on regular intervals (often as regularly as 15 minute intervals), so everything from the operating system (OS) to individual application configurations are recoverable after a disruption. Here are the main advantages of BDR:

  • Your entire server infrastructure can be restored. All of your personalized settings, security configurations, applications and files can be restored after a data loss incident such as a hardware failure. BDR will restore your entire work space exactly as it was, including all of the specific settings you may have implemented server-side for security or compliance purposes.
  • This solution is perfect for backing up and recovering not just your files, but your entire work space during situations where your server or office network are no longer viable.

Now you’re probably thinking, “If BDR is more thorough than cloud backup, why don’t I just use BDR and forget about cloud backup?” Well, it’s all about using the right tool for the right job. It’s best to look at cloud backup and BDR as two complementary layers of protection safeguarding your business.

Each backup solution is best implemented for different data loss scenarios.  Cloud backup is a great solution for small-scale situations like accidental deletion of a file by an employee, whereas BDR is best-suited to more wide-spread situations like server failure or system-wide damage where your entire OS is no longer available. While there is some overlap in what each solution can provide, BDR can recovery files for example, each solution is optimized to protect against different instances of data loss. When implemented together, they provide more thorough coverage for your data than either could provide independently. As an aside, it’s also worth mentioning that cloud backup provides additional benefits like added collaboration and mobility that are useful in their own right.

The difference between cloud backup and BDR is best summarized as the difference between “I deleted my file” versus “My server has failed.” Both offer protection against data loss, but each is optimized for different data loss scenarios. When paired together, your business benefits from having holistic protection that covers as many types of incidents as possible in the best ways possible.