Published on May 7th, 2022 | by Bibhuranjan


Continuous Data Protection Software Review – MiniTool ShadowMaker

What Is Continuous Data Protection?

Continuous Data Protection (CDP) refers to backing up computer data by storing a copy of every file change. It is also known as real-time backup or continuous backup. CDP copies each version of the target items and doesn’t miss anything.

Continuous data protection is wildly used in the public service industry like healthcare organizations, hospitals, banks, schools, real estate, etc.

Continuous Data Protection Technology

Continuous data protection allows the user or administrator to recover the target items at any point of time. In 1989, its technology was patented by Pete Malcolm, a British entrepreneur, as a backup system in which a copy of every change made to a storage device is captured as the change happens.

In the ideal situation, the recovery point objective (RPO) is 0 while the recovery time objective (RTO) is not. The RPO means the maximum targeted duration of time in which data may be lost from an IT service for a major incident whereas the RTO refers to the targeted period and a service level within which a business procedure has to be restored after an accident to avoid awful results like the break of business continuity.

True Continuous Data Protection vs. Near Continuous Data Protection

Continuous data protection can be sorted into two categories, true continuous data protection and near-continuous data protection. The former must be conducted in cooperation with a VMware or equivalent since its backup write operations are performed at the basic input and output system (BIOS) of the microcomputer to ensure the normal work won’t be interrupted. So, true CDP is not suitable for personal backup solutions.

However, some backup programs only perform restoration at fixed intervals, for example, xx minutes, xx hours, or xx days. They carry out incremental backups at intervals. Those tools, although promoted as “continuous data protection”, actually belong to near CDP or near-continuous backup.

Continuous Data Protection Vendors

Now, let’s see some popular true continuous data protection and near-continuous data protection products and services.

1. MiniTool ShadowMaker

MiniTool ShadowMaker is a professional and reliable data backup program that can provide near-CDP for your crucial files/folders, partitions/volumes, systems, and even the entire hard disk drives. It supports Windows 11, 10, 8.1, 8, and 7, both 32/64-bit. Now, let’s see how to create nearly continuous data protection with MiniTool ShadowMaker.

1. Download MiniTool ShadowMaker from its official website given above and install it on your computer.

2. Launch the software and go to the Backup tab on its main interface.

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3. Click the Source module to specify the data you want to protect.

4. Click the Destination module to select a place to save the backup image.

5. Click the Schedule button, switch on the schedule settings, and pick up a proper backup frequency. There are four kinds of backup schedules.

  • Daily backup: back up once at a specific time within a day or back up every xx hour(s).
  • Weekly backup: back up at a specific time within a day and specific day(s) within a week.
  • Monthly backup: back up at a specific time within a day and specific day(s) within a month.
  • On event backup: back up when the user logs on/off.

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6. You can use the Scheme button to customize the backup type you prefer and manage the backup versions.

  • Full backup: back up everything no matter if it has been changed or not.
  • Incremental backup: back up only changed files compared with the last backup.
  • Differential backup: back up only changed items based on the last full backup.

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7. Also, you can rely on the Options button to personalize the backup image, backup task, and backup process.

8. Finally, when all settings are done, click the Back up Now button to start the process.

With MiniTool ShadowMaker, you can create near-continuous data protection at the highest frequency of every hour, which is quite enough for most users!

2. Veeam

If you want to recover a VM to an older state, Veeam Backup & Replication enables you to make extra restore points that include a VM state back to hours or days ago. To facilitate replication over slow connections, it optimizes traffic transmission, filters out unnecessary data blocks like duplicate data blocks, zero data blocks, and compresses replica traffic.

3. Rubrik

Rubrik provides powerful continuous data protection developed especially for your VMware environments. It boots data resiliency by offering you the ability to restore VMs from previous points in time, up to a maximum of 4 hours before.

Since continuous data protection is built into the same Rubrik data management platform that offers backup, replication, and disaster recovery orchestration, there is nothing else to manage or license.

4. Cohesity

Take advantage of Cohesity’s continuous data protection to get higher resilience and flexible, effective protection for your mission-critical VMs. It ensures the recovery of all data, not just some of it. with the flexibility to select a recovery point just seconds before that data loss event, Cohesity CDP minimizes both your data loss and downtime.

5. Acronis

Acronis CDP solution enables you to quickly restore all your clients’ business-critical data, not just last week’s backups, supporting the integrity of data and operations. As a continuous data protection service provider, relying on Acronis, you can delight your clients with near-zero recovery point objectives and downtime.

6. SonicWALL

The SonicWALL Continuous Data Protection Series contains a complete, disk-based backup and recovery solution that satisfies most organizations and remote offices. They offer real-time and hassle-free local backup and hands-free offsite protection for servers, laptops, and desktops.

7. Symantec

The PowerVault DL Backup-to-Disk appliance – Powered by Symantec Backup Exec provides the industry’s only fully integrated backup-to-disk solution with software factory installed. Dell and Symantec have co-developed this offering to give you easier management capabilities of the backup-to-disk environment. It is an ideal way for any IT department to achieve faster, more reliable backups and restorations. With continuous data protection included, this software can protect systems immediately as they change.


The HP RDX Continuous Data Protection Software is an easy-to-use, hands-free, and rugged tool to protect your entire system including both workstations and servers. To back to important files, you only need to drag and drop them. It is just so simple and convenient.


All in all, continuous data protection is a type of real-time backup methodology. It captures every change in the protected data. With it, you don’t have to worry about losing data and you can recover the lost items as soon as possible with one of the above continuous data protection solutions.

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Editorial Officer, I'm an avid tech enthusiast at heart. I like to mug up on new and exciting developments on science and tech and have a deep love for PC gaming. Other hobbies include writing blog posts, music and DIY projects.

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