First of all, the term “SQL backup” is confusing and actually not very accurate, but most people who start reading about databases make this confusion.
The correct term is “SQL database backup”, because the backup is of the database and the data, and what you use is SQL to get the data from the database.
What is a SQL backup?
A SQL backup, and we will reffer to it from now on as a database backup, is a file or set of files containing a copy of the data in your database.
What is the purpose of a backup?
Backups have been created to meet two purposes. The main purpose is to provide a method of recovering data in case of loss from the primary database, be it by corruption or accidental or intentional deletion. Data loss is a very common situation, due to unexperienced computer users.
The second function a backup has to perform is to allow to recover data from an earlier time, which is generally a condition set by a policy for data retention.
A backup might seem enough in order to recover your data, but it’s best to be included in a disaster recovery plan. Just by themselves, they should not be considered a method for recovery in case of disaster.
Every backup schedule should include a dry run that will prove if your backup process and disaster recovery plan are reliable. Also, it is very important to understand the limitations that are being added to the entire process by the human factor.
Why should you create a backup and how?
Data, data, data. It’s all about data and its safety. The ability to recover data and to access older data, which might have changed is essential to most organizations.