Google Drive is preparing to roll out a computer backup tool that will enable users to back up their entire computer. The change will greatly expand the functions of Drive by changing it from a basic cloud storage app that requires files to be stored within it. To do this, Google will roll out a new tool called Backup and Sync later this month, it announced in a blog post on Wednesday.
How Backup and Sync will work
Google plans to launch the new Backup and Sync tool on June 28., and the company said it will be the newest version of Google Drive for Mac or PC. The computer backup tool will integrate Google Drive with the Google Photos desktop uploader, enabling it to “respect any current Drive for Mac/PC settings in the Admin console,” the company explained.
It sounds like Google’s upcoming computer backup app will function in some ways like cloud storage services such as Dropbox. After downloading Backup and Sync later this month when it’s released, users can tell Google to automatically back up any folder you tell it to back up. Dropbox offers a similar functionality, enabling users to select specific files they want to be backed up in their Dropbox. It’s also possible to tell Google’s computer backup service to automatically back up the users’ entire hard drive, if they so desire.
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Backup and Sync also enables users to access the files they have backed up using Google’s computer backup system from anywhere.
Backup tool designed for consumers; business version coming soon
Google said in its blog post that the new backup tool is mainly designed to be used by consumers. As such, it recommends that business customers who are using G Suite keep using Drive for Mac or PC until their new Drive File Stream is available. Drive File Stream is aimed at enterprises, and it’s currently available to members of Google’s Early Adopter Program. All G Suite Basic, Business, Enterprise, Education and Nonprofit domains will be able to start using Google’s enterprise-focused computer backup system later this year.
Drive File Stream will enable users to access large sets of corporate data without all that data having to take up massive amounts of space on their hard drives. In view of the enterprise-focused app that’s coming later this year, the company won’t automatically upgrade G Suite users from Drive for Mac and PC to its new Backup and Sync system at this time. Enterprise customers who allow their users to install Drive on their own computers will be able to upgrade to Backup and Sync starting on June 28, although users at enterprises that don’t allow use of Google Drive won’t be able to use the computer backup system with G Suite.