(also incremental file backups, incremental cloud backups)
Incremental backups definition
Incremental backups are a type of backup that only creates copies of data that has changed or recently created. Think of it this way, if you have the auto-save feature enabled on Microsoft Word, only the sentences or changes you make will be saved because everything you’ve written or changed in the past is already saved. So, incremental backups will only save or make copies of data you’ve added or changed since the previous backup was made. In the end, you can back up all your data with incremental backups, but you’ll back it up in portions rather than everything at once. Incremental backups can speed up the whole backup-creation process while taking up less space than full backups.
Types of incremental backups
Synthetic full backup. If you want to create a synthetic full backup, you need to program your system to read the last full backup and only add incremental backups (changes made) that follow the last full backup.
Incremental forever backup. If you use an incremental forever backup system, it will only create one full backup of your data and then store all the following incremental backups on a centralized backup system.
Enhanced incremental backup. An enhanced incremental backup system can identify modified or moved files and only store them in the storage system. It also comes with better monitoring features than other incremental backup types.
Reverse incremental backup. This incremental backup type works in a similar way as a synthetic full backup. Namely, it creates a full backup and then adds the changed data to it. The difference is that a reverse incremental backup allows you to go back and get a previous backup copy.