Cloud vs. On-Premise Backup Solutions: Which is Better?

on premise vs cloud backup

Cloud vs. On-Premise Backup Solutions: Which is Better?

Backup and restoration strategies have become crucial for organizations of every type and size.

With data more important than ever, all businesses and organizations should utilize some sort of backup strategy or service to help protect your data and ensure a reliable recovery strategy.

However, there are many different ways of backing up your data, which leads us to our primary question of which is better: cloud backup solutions or on-premise backup infrastructure?


Most well-established companies are currently using some form of on-premise backup solution and often consider shifting to or adding cloud backup solutions because it is a cheap and reliable option with many additional benefits.

However, to make an informed choice between these two popular backup solutions, you must first be familiar with the differences between on-premise backup solutions and cloud-based backup services.


On-Premise Backup

On-premise backups are currently the most common and well-known backup solution.

On-premise or on-site backup means storing data locally on various devices such as hard drives, disks, tape drives, or servers.

Many companies prefer on-premise backup solutions as they are considered secure, quick, and efficient due to the fast, low latency, backup and recovery speeds they are capable of when backed by robust network communications.

Businesses that need fast, regular backup and recovery prefer on-premise backup.

It should be noted that in large organizations on-premises backup is sometimes hosted at a central location and though this can help with costs and other aspects of management, doing so does negate many of the speed benefits of on-premises backup and recovery.


Advantages of On-Premise Backup

1. Offline

One of the key advantages of an on-premise backup is that you do not need an internet connection to access data.

Even if your company relies on the internet for day-to-day affairs, you will not have to worry about any possible failure or corruption of your back up due to internet problems.


2. Low Monthly Cost

Private cloud solutions often charge not-insignificant monthly fees, which increases the regular outgoings of your organization.

On the other hand, you do not usually have to pay any charges for a self-managed on-site backup system.

While occasionally maintenance may be necessary for an on-site device, you do not have to pay a fixed amount of money if you opt for an unmanaged solution.

Hence, in terms of monthly charges, on-premise backup solutions are usually more cost-efficient than cloud-based services.


3. Security

Business and enterprise clouds are vulnerable to cyberattacks from hackers who are continually trying to access and steal data from companies.

Despite cloud solutions being exceptionally secure and in almost all cases utilizing end-to-end encryption – an on-site solution means that data is not sent out over the internet whatsoever and stays secure behind your firewall.

This does not mean your data is invulnerable, but it does mean a smaller attack surface for would-be data-thieves.


Disadvantages of On-Premise Backup

Even though on-premise backup solutions provide many benefits, there are many disadvantages as well:

1. Maintenance

To implement on-premise backup solutions, your company must have experienced and trained IT staff to manage the servers or pay to outsource this management to a third party.

Hiring new staff or spending money on training the old members of your IT team further increases the cost of maintenance.


2. Investment for Infrastructure

Building out adequate infrastructure is probably the most critical part of backing up your data and applications on-site.

Hence, it requires significant up-front investment to buy servers, develop the internal network, and purchase other hardware needed for backup.

Not every organization, especially startups, can afford such an expensive investment, however, attempting to cut corners can leave your data at significant risk.


3. Chances of Data Loss

There is a higher risk of data loss with on-site backups, particularly in the case of damage to the hardware or irreparable damage to the system.


Cloud Backup Solutions

Modern businesses worldwide are now starting to prefer managed enterprise and business cloud-based backup services due to their superior resilience, ease of use, and the low-overheads involved in getting set up.

Most private cloud service providers now offer automated backups to ensure all of your important data is safe.


Advantages of Cloud Backup System

1. Minimum Capital Expense

Cloud backup services are considered an operational expense as you do not have to invest in hardware and physical infrastructure up-front.


2. No Maintenance

You or your IT staff do not have to worry about the maintenance of the cloud servers.

It is the cloud backup service provider’s responsibility to ensure up-to-date and secure services, and automation to guarantee that your data is automatically backed up regularly.


3. Smart Budgeting

Cloud backup plans are extremely flexible. You generally only pay for space and bandwidth you use.

Additionally, many cloud companies will design a specialized payment and storage solution for your company.


Disadvantages of Cloud Backup Solutions

1. Can be Costly

Scalability is a huge advantage of cloud-based backup services.

However, it can quickly become a disadvantage when not correctly managed; infinite storage can quickly become expensive if you aren’t careful to limit overuse and keep on top of duplicate data.


2. Internet is Essential

Unlike on-premise backup solutions, you must have a reliable high-speed internet connection to properly access the business cloud services.


Which Is Better?

Both cloud and on-premise solutions have their own set of advantages and disadvantages. You should choose the backup solution that best suits your requirements and budgets.

In terms of cost, despite a fixed monthly fee, cloud backup options are often more cost-efficient than on-premise backup systems as they do not need any specific hardware, and you do not have to pay for the maintenance of physical infrastructure.

Moreover, cloud services offer flexible account and storage plans that you can use to store as much data as you want or need.

Every organization should carefully analyze their requirements and future growth when deciding on a suitable backup system.