About Incremental Backup and Differential Backup

Incremental backup and differential backup are two backup types. You can choose any one of them to backup files and data after first full backup. You may wonder if incremental or differential backup is better. Let’s take a close look.

  • Incremental Backup:
    It will backup all changed or increased data and files based on last full backup or incremental backup. That is, if you have made a full backup and then two incremental backups, your first incremental backup will backup data changed after the full backup and the second incremental backup will backup data changed after the first incremental backup. A full backup and following incremental backups are in time sequence. If any one of the incremental image files in the sequence is damaged or missing, then subsequent image files will be invalid.
    Pros: It takes the least backup time and storage space.
    Cons: Incremental image files are likely to be affected by previous image files. Besides, the recovery process is comparatively long, because it will restore every image file in the sequence until the one you need.
  • Differential Backup:
    It will backup all changed data and files based on last full backup. That is, if you have made a full backup and a differential backup, and then another full backup and differential backup, the first differential backup will backup data changed after the first full backup and the second differential backup will backup data changed after the second full backup. If one of the differential image files becomes damaged or lost, it will not affect others.
    Pros: It takes less restoration time, because it only restores the differential image file you choose and the related full image file.
    Cons: The differential image files based on the same full backup will become progressively larger for changed data are more and more.

Many people know how important data backup is, but some of them always complain that storage space is not sufficient or backup wastes much time. Under this circumstance, if you want to backup changed data only, you can perform incremental backup or differential backup via AOMEI Backupper.

How to Use Incremental/Differential Backup in AOMEI Backupper?


Step 1. Download, install and launch AOMEI Backupper. Select Home, choose a backup task and expand its menu. Click Schedule option. In General tab of the Schedule Settings window, set the backup frequency you prefer.

Step 2. Choose Advanced option in the Schedule Settings window, which contains Full backup, Incremental Backup (Default) and Differential Backup. You may upgrade to paid editions to perform scheduled differential backup.

Step 3. Backup process will run automatically at the time you set.

Further Tutorials & Video Guides

If you want to know more about incremental or differential backup, please refer to following documents and video.

More Tutorials

Incremental backup and differential backup have their own features. If you want to know more about incremental backup or differential backup:

Learn More

How to Backup

You could refer to the following tutorials to backup system, partitions, disks or files:

System Backup Partition and Volume Backup Disk Backup File and Folders Backup

Study Video

Video tutorial of incremental/differential backup: