What SnapDiff is

SnapDiff is an internal ONTAP engine that quickly identifies the file and directory differences between two Snapshot copies.

By finding the differences between two Snapshot copies, SnapDiff eliminates the file scanning requirements of a traditional backup application during an incremental backup, which reduces the backup processing to only the time required to write the changed or added data.

When incrementally backing up an Infinite Volume to tape using SnapDiff, the backup application uses the SnapDiff application programming interfaces (APIs) to communicate with the SnapDiff engine to identify new, changed, and deleted files between two Snapshot copies of the active file system in an Infinite Volume. The differencing process uses the namespace constituent and namespace mirror constituents in an Infinite Volume to determine names for the list of new, changed, and deleted files. When these changes are identified, the backup application backs up the identified data from the list that is produced during the differencing process.