Data Storage Options

There are four popular storage options for backing up a Windows computer. Here are the advantages and disadvantages of each.

Cloud Backup media option

Cloud Backup

For a monthly subscription, an application running on your computer will backup your data files to an offsite facility. The security and privacy of your data are accomplished by encrypting the data during transfer through the Internet and as files stored at the offsite facility.

Advantages

  • Convenience Files are automatically copied through the Internet.
  • Low upfront cost Billed monthly or annually.
  • Safety Offsite storage of data ensures disaster recovery options.

Disadvantages

  • Performance Large amounts of data will require significant transfer time.
  • Cost Subscriptions for multiple computers may be costly.
  • Security Ensure your data is encrypted, both during transfer and in storage.
Optical Backup media option

Optical Media Backup

A frequently used method of data storage is to save the data onto optical media, such as a CD-ROM, DVD-ROM, or Blu-ray disc. While convenient and simple to perform, these methods are typically manual, such as inserting another backup disc, and therefore require a lot of your time. Some software utilities used to burn music, data and movie discs, also include a backup feature.

Advantages

  • Cost Optical media are rather inexpensive in bulk purchase.
  • Security Data that never leaves your possession is safe.
  • Simple Burning data discs can be done using the utilities included with the Windows operating system.

Disadvantages

  • Management Storing, organizing and locking up physical items is required.
  • Durability Physical media are susceptible to damage by mishandling and accidents.
USB Backup media option

Local Media Backup

Traditional backup involves copying data files to local media, such as a USB thumb drive; an external USB or Firewire hard disk drive; or a tape backup device. The methods for copying files to these different media types range from completely manual (copying a folder or folders to the external media) to highly automated (Rebit fits in this category). While local media can be the simplest in terms of setup and usage, backup applications vary in terms of configuration and ease of use. Typically, this form of backup requires scheduling or some form of procedure to carry out the backup process.

Advantages

  • Cost Hard drives are inexpensive and their price continues to drop.
  • Security Data that never leaves your possession is safe.
  • Performance Data stored locally is readily accessible and fast to transfer.

Disadvantages

  • Management Storing, organizing and locking up physical items is required.
  • Durability Physical media are susceptible to damage by mishandling and accidents.
Private Cloud Backup media option

Private Cloud Backup

Private Cloud backup uses software to save your data onto a storage device located on your network. Network Attached Storage (NAS) devices are readily available and convenient. You can place the NAS anywhere on your network, whether local or at a distance. In addition, shared network drive also may qualify as backup storage, creating a variation of private cloud storage.

Advantages

  • Convenience Files are copied automatically when the network is available.
  • Security Few people and computers can access data.
  • Performance Local network data transfer is faster than the Internet.

Disadvantages

  • Cost NAS devices cost more than external USB drives.
  • Setup Configuring network devices is more complicated.

While the ideal backup storage solution will depend on your individual or company needs, the best overall system is one that continues to protect your computer with minimal human interaction. In some situations, a combination of two storage options may be the best solution for disaster recovery and local protection. Contact Rebit for more information on designing the backup solution that’s just right for you.