Cambridge Dictionaries online Cambridge Dictionaries online

The most popular online dictionary and thesaurus for learners of English

English definition of “backup”

See all translations

backup

noun uk   /ˈbæk.ʌp/ us  
B2 [C or U] (someone or something that provides) support or help, or something that you have arranged in case your main plans, equipment, etc. go wrong: We're going to need some professional backup for this project. The party is going to be outdoors, so we'll need to organize somewhere as a backup in case it rains. Remember, your colleagues are your backup system when things go wrong.B2 [C] a copy of information held on a computer that is stored separately from the computer: Before we leave work each day, we make a backup of all the records we have entered into the computer that day. The department's backup disks are all stored in a different building. [C] US a player who plays when the person who usually plays is not available: He's a backup for the Dallas Cowboys.
More examples

backup

adjective [only before noun] uk   /ˈbæk.ʌp/ US ( UK backing) us  
supporting the main singer, performer, etc : backup vocals Beyoncé's backup dancers
(Definition of backup from the Cambridge Advanced Learners Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
What is the pronunciation of backup?
Add Cambridge dictionaries to your browser to your website

More meanings of “backup”

Definitions of “backup” in other dictionaries

Word of the Day

christmassy

typical of Christmas, or happy because it is Christmas

Word of the Day

Cleavage proves divisive in Cambridge’s words of 2014

by Alastair Horne,
December 19, 2014
​​​​ Other dictionaries may choose faddish novelties as their words of the year, but here at Cambridge, we like to do something different. We look for the words that have seen sudden surges in searches over the course of the year – words that have been baffling users of English and driven them

Read More 

tweleb noun

December 22, 2014
informal a Twitter celebrity; (more specifically, someone who has more than 1,000 followers on Twitter) There were a few old and a few new faces, including a tweleb or two. Expect to see and hear more from these cool kids.

Read More