Nero BackItUp explained – Local Copy, Online Copy vs Local Snapshot

Nero BackItUp is a consumer oriented solution and doesn’t utilize the typical incremental or differential backup strategies know from enterprise solutions. Instead there are two backup modes:

Local copy / Online copy doesn’t apply any file versioning, each file only exists once in the one and only backup set, so the backup can be browsed in Windows File Explorer easily

  • Unchanged files that have been backed up before won’t be backed up again
  • A file deleted from the source data won’t be deleted in the backup set
  • A file modified in the source data will overwrite the file in the backup set on next backup
  • A file renamed or moved in the source data will be added like a new file to the backup set
  • A files added to the source data will be added to the backup set
  • This is the only mode that allows continuous backup and it is not available for optical discs
  • There is only one single entry for the one backup set (per backup job) on the restore page

Local snapshot applies a similar concept but saves new/modified files into new backup sets, so all the different versions of a file are kept over time

  • Unchanged files that have been backed up before won’t be backed up again
  • A file deleted from the source data won’t be deleted in the previous backup set
  • A file modified in the source data will be available in the next backup set
  • A file renamed in the source data will be added like a new file to the next backup set
  • A files added to the source data will be available in the next backup set
Example of different backup sets with time stamps within one local snapshot backup job

Local snapshots on optical discs are always a full backup every time the job is run.

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