What Is the Difference Between AWS Snapshot and Backup?

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Ever-increasing amounts of business-critical data, particularly in virtualized environments and in the cloud, have shaped the need for reliable data protection technologies. Many of these technologies have emerged over the last few years, offering a wide selection of options and flexibility in choosing the right solution.

The plethora of options, in turn, has led to some confusion: What are the differences between such technologies? How do you choose the right one for your business? How can you best adapt a certain technology to your particular needs?

A good example of this confusion is the widespread misconception that snapshots of EBS volumes in Amazon Web Services are a viable alternative to, or even the same thing as, real backups. EBS volumes can be attached as disks and provide storage for EC2 instances, making them a very important part of your cloud infrastructure. AWS provides the ability to create snapshots of EBS volumes from its console, and many have made the grave mistake of relying on this option instead of using a full-featured backup solution.

This approach is a costly potentially dangerous path to take. Although they are often used interchangeably, AWS snapshots and backups are two different ways of protecting data in the Amazon cloud. A backup is a more comprehensive and flexible copy of your VMs; it offers reliable protection and ensures fast and consistent recovery. An AWS snapshot is just a point-in-time copy of an Amazon EBS volume with limited storage and recovery options. Relying on snapshots in lieu of backups is a rather cumbersome and costly solution that limits your possibilities and drains your resources.

Understanding the difference between AWS snapshots and backups and introducing a reliable backup solution into your cloud infrastructure can help you save 4X on backup storage costs while improving data security and reliability.

Download our White Paper, AWS Snapshot vs. Backup, to get more information about the key differences between the EBS volume snapshots offered by AWS and fully-functional backups created with NAKIVO Backup & Replication.

AWS Snapshot vs. Backup

AWS EC2 Backup


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