File vs Image Backup: Which Is a Better Choice for You?

You can select to back up your machine from the file level or image level. They are two totally different backup solutions. And both of them have pros and cons. Now, this article will guide you to decide which one is a better choice for you.

In order to avoid data loss, you should back up your machine at regular intervals. Before backing up, you have to make some decisions, including the storage media for backup, the backup software as well as the backup solutions – file backup or image backup. Now, in the followings, we will discuss about the pros and cons of file and image backup and show their appropriate situations.

File vs Image Backup: Which Is a Better Choice for You?

File Backup

As its name suggests, file backup refers to backing up the files or folders, such as your documents, photos, music and all kinds of other common files. This is much simpler than the image backup. In this backup, you need to select individual files or folders to back up. And in restoration, you ought to select as well.

Pros

In comparison, the file backup can be quicker in that it doesn’t need to back up the operating system. Also, restoring files, such as PST recovery from backup can take less time as well. Besides, file backup is less expensive.

Cons

However, it also has drawbacks. One of the most annoying shortcomings is that it only contains files or folders, not including the machine system. Thus, it is unable to back up or restore the entire machine. Once the machine crashed, the backup is not very helpful in system and application restore.

Suitable Cases

If your machine is only mobile phone, tablet or laptop, you can select file backup. It’s because such machines usually don’t have complex system configurations. So, even though its system goes down, it is very easy to reinstall it. What you require urgently is the file restoration from the backup.

Image Backup

Image backup comes down to backing up the whole machine’s operating system, files and applications. It’s an image, a “snapshot” of the machine drive, consisting of block-by-block content of the drive.

Pros

In contrast, image backup is much more complete. Thus, if your machine crashes, you don’t need to separately reinstall the system and then restore backed-up data. You can simply restore the image to the machine. It is quite useful for physical to virtual conversion.

Cons

Since such backup covers much more data than file backup, it will take more time to back up and restore and will take up more storage space. Besides, it is knotty in case that you only want to extract some files to restore.

Suitable Cases

In terms of servers or computers running complex systems, you should select the image backup. It is because such devices usually contain complex settings. Once they get corrupt, it is quite troublesome to reinstall and reconfigure them. But, if you have image backup, you do not need to reinstall or reconfigure. They can be quickly restored from the image backup with effortless ease.

Author Introduction:

Shirley Zhang is a data recovery expert in DataNumen, Inc., which is the world leader in data recovery technologies, including recover sql and outlook repair software products. For more information visit www.datanumen.com