http://www.techrepublic.com/article/google-drive-backup-and-sync-feature-offers-full-backup-alternative-to-apple-time-machine/

Google Drive Backup and Sync feature offers full backup alternative to Apple Time Machine

Google is launching a new backup feature in late June 2017 that will allow users to back up data from any folder on their hard drive straight to Google Drive.

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Image: iStockphoto/Bannosuke

A new Google Drive feature called Backup and Sync, launching June 28, will allow users to continuously back up files to Google Drive from any folder on their computer. The full backup solution, announced in a G Suite blog post Wednesday, will exist as part of Google Drive for Mac/PC, and will respect the user’s existing settings.

Once the feature goes live, a user can simply click on the check boxes next to the names of his or her folders to connect them to Drive. The window will also display the current size of the folder, so the user will know how much data will be synced before the process begins.

Consumer users are the intended audience for the new feature, the post said. However, Google’s post did also recommend that G Suite users continue to use Drive for Mac/PC as they have been until the new Drive File Stream enterprise tool is ready to go live later in 2017.

SEE: Cloud Data Storage Policy Template (Tech Pro Research)

Drive File Stream, introduced in early May 2017, allows enterprise users to stream their corporate data to their machine without having a copy saved locally. Cloud storage firm Box recently announced a very similar product called Box Drive that also focuses on streaming data.

According to the post G Suite users will not be upgraded to Backup and Sync just yet. If an organization permits users to work with Drive for Mac/PC on their machines, the post said, they’ll be able to manually upgrade to the new service when it launches in June.

If a G Suite customer company prohibits the use of Google Drive for Mac/PC, then employees will not have access to Backup and Sync through their corporate G Suite accounts, the post noted.

If a user doesn’t currently have Drive for Mac/PC, they should start by checking the system requirements. If the machine in question qualifies, interested parties can download Drive for Mac/PC from Google support page, here.

The 3 big takeaways for TechRepublic readers

  1. Google Drive’s Backup and Sync feature, launching June 28, will allow users to back up files to Google Drive from any folder on their computer.
  2. The feature will be an extension of Google Drive for Mac/PC, and will respect the user’s existing settings.
  3. Google will also soon be launching Drive File Stream, a streaming data storage option for enterprise users.
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