How Backups Work

Description

This article will cover how the backups work with the Endpoint Backup product, including how versions work.

Requirements

  • Interest in the Endpoint Backup product

The Process

When you initiate a backup, the backup commences shortly thereafter and all files within the location are backed up. If a file is added to a location that has been specified for backup, Endpoint Backup Desktop will automatically recognise this and begin backing up the file in its entirety. If any changes are made to a file after the initial backup, the EB Desktop will recognise the changes and initiate the backup.

Full backup will not commence immediately, however, if you are backing up a network-mounted volume that does not support alerting the EB Desktop to changes (e.g. SAMBA). In this case, the drive will be scanned every three hours and if changes are detected, backup will commence.

Note that a 500MB per file per day limit applies to files that are changed. For example, if a 1.75GB file is changed on a daily basis, the file will only be backed up every fourth day. Or, if a file is 100 MB and changes frequently, only five versions will be backed up per day.

When Endpoint Backup Desktop for Windows attempts to back up the file and fails because the file is busy, it waits to see if the file becomes available. After a few attempts, the file will then go into “push” mode, which means that the Endpoint Backup service will no longer request the file; the agent will send the file as soon as it is able to access it. When in "push" mode, every second attempt will try utilise the Windows VSS (shadow copy) mechanism, should the application that has the file open support VSS.

Other backup information worth noting:

  • We do not currently support backup of files with a "system" attribute, file names containing emoticons, or hidden files (with the exception of Windows AppData folder)
  • There is a 10 MB/second upload/download limit
  • There will be a 30 - 60 second delay, after you have added a file to a folder designated for backup, before backup begins
  • Because of the “pull” mechanism it uses, Endpoint Backup checks if you will be over your quota before it pulls the file. Consequently, you won’t be able to back up a file that will take you over quota

Delta Backup Support

Files that support delta backup will be backed up daily, regardless of the file size.

The following file extensions support delta backup:
OS X : .pst, .xml, .database
Windows : .pst, .ost, .xml

Backing up low availability files

Certain files types have low availability due to the nature of the file; in particular, databases and accounting software. As these files types are constantly being changed by multiple users, they can often fail to backup successfully even if they support the VSS mechanism. For these files types, we recommend that you create a scheduled, automated snapshot (backup) within the software itself, then use Endpoint Backup to back up the snapshot.

About Backup Versions

In Endpoint Backup, backups work use versioning. Every time a file is backed up via Endpoint Backup, a version is created and any changes are saved. The mechanism works as follows:

  • A new version is created each time a file is saved
  • All versions for the last hour are retained
  • The last version from each hour for the last day is saved
  • The last version from each day for the last week is saved
  • The last version from each week for the last month is saved
  • The last version from each month is saved for the last 6 months
  • After 6 months, the version is permanently deleted