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Microsoft gives backup software vendors 30 days of pain

OneDrive for Business stretches its restoration envelope

By Richard Chirgwin

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Microsoft's OneDrive for Business now offers to recover files deleted a month in the past.

As Redmond product marketing bod Stephen Rose explained, the feature doesn't just save your bacon from an accidental delete: there's also the matter of file corruption or, everyone's greatest fear de jour, malware.

So instead of relying on backups alone (which, of course, you make daily and test weekly, right? Oh, sorry), users can now flick through the last months' file activity to get their work back. “Now your users and your administrators can rewind changes using activity data to find the exact moment to revert to”, Rose wrote.

The feature is accessed from the OneDrive for Business settings pane, from where you get a choice of files (second image) and a point-in-time choice for an individual file (third image) as shown below.

You wouldn't want to rely on this if you lose a whole directory, since it's a file-by-file selection – so make those backups.

The post hints that non-business users might get offered the service soon: “This capability starts rolling out today to all OneDrive for Business users and will continue to roll out over the next few weeks”, Rose wrote.

30 days of restorative powers aren't a direct assault on vendors of proper backup software, but Microsoft's cloud gets closer to picking a fight every year. The Reg understands that DR is already Azure's second-biggest-selling service, after rented servers, and that Microsoft's therefore considering what other cloudy data protection services it might muster. ®

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