How Diff, Not Full Streamlines Capacity Management

Apr 18, 2018

How Diff, Not Full Streamlines Capacity Management

BY Andrew Burton

The latest Datto IRIS operating system release includes an update that will dramatically reduce manual intervention associated with capacity management on Datto Continuity devices. The update, which we call Diff, Not Full, is a set of intelligence enhancements for Datto agents and devices that ensures maximum backup efficiency.

You are probably already aware of differences between full, differential, and incremental backups. But, just for reference, let’s take a look at each. A full backup is exactly what it sounds like—a full copy of an entire data set. A differential backup, on the other hand, is a copy of all of the data that has changed since the last full backup. Finally, an incremental backup is a copy of all of the data that has changed since the previous backup—whether it was full, differential, or a previous incremental. Full backups, while important, are time-consuming and capacity-intensive.

Diff, Not Full ensures that full backups are only triggered on the initial backup or in the event of a volume addition. This results in:

  • Less manual intervention

  • Fewer support calls

  • Less data to offsite

  • Less network congestion

  • Faster backups

This update required a two-pronged approach. First, we updated the Datto Windows Agent directly. However, for Datto devices using the ShadowSnap Agent, this was not possible. So, we added intelligence to devices as well. This allows devices to detect when the ShadowSnap agent triggers an unnecessary full backup and forces a differential instead.

“At Datto, we have been talking about total cost of ownership for years. Last year, we brought down tickets per device by hardening screenshotting and reducing backup errors on devices as well as agents,” said Ian McChord, Vice President, Product. “This year we are attacking backup efficiency. Enabling devices to back up and store data more efficiently is a true win-win for our partners and their customers.”

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