MiniTool ShadowMaker - The All-Sided Backup Solution

What can you do to keep your data actually safe? This article will tell you how.

About Backup

According to Wikipedia, backups have two distinct purposes. The primary purpose is to recover data after its loss, be it by data deletion or corruption. Data loss can be a common experience of computer users; it is reported that most of users had lost files on their home PC. The secondary purpose of backups is to recover data from an earlier time, according to a user-defined data retention policy, typically configured within a backup application for how long copies of data are required. 

Though backups represent a simple form of disaster recovery and should be part of any disaster recovery plan, backups by themselves should not be considered a complete disaster recovery plan. One reason for this is that not all backup systems are able to reconstitute a computer system or other complex configuration such as a computer cluster, active directory server, or database server by simply restoring data from a backup.

3 Types of Backup: Full, Incremental, Differential

Backup types are vital to choosing the right backup strategy. In a nutshell, the most common types are full backup, incremental backup, and differential backup.

Full Backup

It is the most basic and complete type of backup operation. As its name implies, this type can make a copy of all the data including files, folders, settings, applications and more on the storage devices like hard drive, SSD, HDD etc. If you choose a full backup as a default method, files and folders will be backed up again entirely in any subsequent backup operations. Then, many redundant data copies will be made. Thus it can be seen that this backup type can take much disk space. Moreover, you will take longer to create a full backup than other types. In most cases, a full backup will be made in combination with other types of backup, either incremental backup or differential backup.

Incremental Backup

It refers to backing up all the files that have changed since the last backup operation of any type of backup. For example, you create a full backup on Sunday. Then, the incremental backup performed on Monday only backs up the changed files since Sunday. And, the incremental backup on Tuesday will back up the changed files since Monday…

image Differential Backup

Differential backup refers to backing up the only changed files since the last full backup. For instance, a full backup is created on Sunday and a differential backup on Monday will only back up the changed files since Sunday. The differential backup on Tuesday will back up all files that have been changed since Monday and Tuesday…

image Incremental VS Differential Backup

You may want to know what's the difference between incremental and differential backup?

  1. Both of them only back up the added or modified data. However, incremental backup is created based on the last backup (full backup or incremental backup). A differential backup is made on the basis of the last full backup.
  2. Incremental backup takes up less storage space and needs less time during the backup process.
  3. Incremental backup takes a longer time to do a restoration than a differential backup.
  4. For an incremental backup, a full backup and all incremental backups are essential for restoration. But, for the differential backup, only full backup and the last differential backup are needed for restoration.

The Full-sided Backup Software - MiniTool ShadowMaker

As a piece of full-sided backup & restore software, MiniTool ShadowMaker Free Edition allows you to back up the system, partition, and entire disk, meanwhile, data compression is performed to save storage space. And it brings you the three types of backup mentioned above, enabling you to get your data protected well. Download it now and install it to your computer running Windows 10, Windows 8/8.1 or Windows 7. Besides, it allows enabling disk space management as long as you specify a backup scheme. 

Scheme Feature

By default, this feature is disabled, so turn the switch to ON. Then, you see it brings you three common types of backup: FullIncremental and Differential. Meanwhile, it allows performing disk space management by deleting certain backup file versions. Note that Free Edition only supports Incremental Backup Scheme. But if you need to choose Differential Backup Scheme, try MiniTool ShadowMaker Beta Edition.


Note that MiniTool ShadowMaker also allows you to create an automatic backup by specifying a time point. Usually, it is used in combination with an incremental or differential backup.


After finishing additional settings, start to back up your system or disk.

When it comes to backup, some of you may choose to use Windows built-in backup tool to create a backup of the system. Is it available for those three common types of backup? To be specific, full backup and incremental backup are supported.

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