My manager asked me to look for a SharePoint backup option. Do you know any suggestions for SharePoint back up both content and application?
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Which product are you handling? SharePoint Server or SharePoint Online?
For SharePoint Server, it provides two backup systems: farm and granular.
The farm backup architecture in SharePoint Server starts a SQL Server backup of content and service application databases, writes configuration content to files, and also backs up the Search index files and synchronizes them with the Search database backups.
The granular backup and export architecture uses Transact-SQL queries and export calls. Granular backup and export is a more read-intensive and processing-intensive operation than farm backup.
For more detailed information, pleas check the official doc: https://docs.microsoft.com/en-us/sharepoint/administration/backup-and-recovery-overview
For SharePoint Online, Microsoft handles the backup and restore architecture, you can restore sites, lists, items through proper process. For more complex problems, you may need to get a service request about it for more help.