Separately stored automated server backups or snapshots?

Posted By on December 30, 2015

doiconDigital Ocean’s cloud based servers have me debating which is best for the in a worse case scenario?  Do I continue with the $1/mo automated backups 4 times per month or go with the no-charge manual “Snapshops?”  The $12/yr charge in the short term is probably reasonable but would have preferred a daily image even though I’d never do that manually. Perhaps I’ll stick with the automated for a month to see just how reliable the cloud-based server is before moving to manual “Snapshots” (along with my usual sFTP backup and database “dumps)?

Scaling:Snapshots can provide an easy way to scale out a system: you can take a snapshot of a current server and spin up a new droplet from the snapshot. As soon as the process completes, you will have two identical servers to bolster your setup.

Backups: While automated backups make sure that is always a version of your system available in case of trouble, snapshots have the added benefit of being possible at any time. A snapshot could be taken prior to making any drastic changes to a server configuration, so that, should the changes be unsuccessful, you will have a version to revert back to.


    • Thanks Tim … you are my “go to” ubuntu flavored Linux expert. Playing with my new “Pi” toy this week (got it for Christmas) and looking forward to a new PINE A64. 🙂

      I think saving the $12/mo with the manual “snapshop” is probably a do-able optionfor me. For most part, the the bottom tier DO server doesn’t have much more than my blog at this point … so as long as I’m backing up the database and have fairly recent “snapshot” I should be safe. Since this is a new install and on a much smaller cloud-based server than my company’s old VPS, I was a little nervous to start with.

      • Snapshots are worth it. Being able to restore your entire system in one shot is fantastic to get things back up and running. Having backups of your database and content on a regular basis is just as important if you care about the content between snapshots.

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.