SFTP Backups - Overview
You can backup your data to a remote computer or device using the FTP (File Transfer Protocol) connection. This is a practical remote backup destination as it allows you to store important files offsite. It can be considered as an additional protection against data loss as the result of hardware failure or other disasters.
Backup to SFTP is a very reliable method of data security, as it involves a remote FTP backup server where the data is transferred via a secure network connection. So on one hand you have the protection of your data against local threats (fires, natural disasters), on the other hand you can rest assure that your important data cannot be intercepted during the transfer as it's a secure transfer. SFTP provides secure file transfer and manipulation over the secure shell (SSH) protocol, a must when handling sensitive data backups. When the data is backed up to a remote location, several threats (sniffers, hackers, data interception) can expose it and allow unwanted access. To avoid the risk of exposing your data during this transfer, you need to use a secure file transfer protocol such as SFTP.
Remote backup to SFTP is suitable for:
- Regular users - can be used as a personal remote backup solution, protecting your data from theft, fire or other disasters that could affect your hardware. If you are a dynamic person that travels a lot then an FTP backup is a must because you can access your remote backed up data on the FTP server from any computer, given that you enter the security details known only by you.
- Computer Consultants - if you are an individual or a company that provides consulting services then you can install Backup4all on your clients' computers and set it so that it does automatically the SFTP backup. You are sure this way that their important data is backed up. The advantage: there is no need for their manual intervention, not to mention that if you set Backup4all to send email notifications, you will receive information on the status of their backup without visiting directly with them.
- Hosting companies - as a hosting company, your clients need to know exactly the value they get using your services. Offering a reliable online backup solution increases the value of your service but this depends on the remote backup software used too. Backup4all is the best choice for your clients given its simplicity and reliability.
- Companies - even if the company policy includes backing up locally as a must, you have to consider a remote backup solution too. This gives your company an additional security option against natural disasters, theft, fire, local hardware fails.
- Outsourcing companies - if you are outsourcing work to freelancers or other companies, or if you have employees working in different locations, you know that backing up offsite files is very difficult. In the same time, your success depends on their work too, thus you need to use SFTP backup to have their work protected.
Using Backup4all you can easily backup to SFTP by selecting your SFTP server as a destination. You can define the SFTP configuration and use the security details that you have (username/password)
Once the connection is defined and tested, you can set this as an automatic schedule with email notifications enabled, to have a fully online backup solution with minimum manual intervention. Advanced features in Backup4all's SFTP backup: User Authentication, Host Authentication, Password Authentication, Public Key Authentication, Data Encryption, Data Integrity.
Backup to SFTP
Steps to follow:
- Open Backup4all and select File -> New (Ctrl+N).
- On the Where do you want to save the backup? page, select Online -> SFTP server as the backup destination. Press Next.
- On the What do you want to backup page, add the backup sources. Press Next.
- On the Filter the backup sources page, you can set include/exclude filters for backup sources. Then press Next.
- On the How do you want to backup page, you can choose the backup type and the encryption. Press Next.
- On the When do you want to backup page, you can set the backup job to automatically run on the specified time and days. Press Next.
- On the Personalize your backup job page, enter a name for the backup in the Backup name field.
- Press Save and run.
Recommendations for backing up to SFTP
- After each change to the SFTP configuration be sure to use the Test function.
- Most SFTP servers have rules against hammering (trying repeatedly to connect to an unavailable SFTP server with little time between attempts). This is why they require "retry times" at specific intervals, commonly at least 60 seconds between attempts. They also monitor for computers that hammer and once detected, the server will ban access to the IP address either permanently or for a limited time. Thus, when you set the retry times intervals in File -> Options -> Online destinations -> SFTP, you should use 60 seconds or more.
- When selecting a hosting company that provides SFTP access for your SFTP backup, consider these elements too: if they have a backup plan too, if they provide high-speed connection and if they have your data on servers with restricted access.