Manually Backing Up the Site

Confluence can be configured automatically back up your data by performing a full site export at a scheduled time each day.

You can also manually back up Confluence at any time, by performing a full site export.

You'll need System Administrator permissions to do this.

Good to know:

  • We don't recommend you rely on XML site exports as your main backup method. Instead, you should regularly back up your database, install and home directories. See Production backup strategy for more information. 
  • Marketplace and user-installed apps are not included in the XML export. After importing your site export file into a new Confluence site, you'll need to re-install all apps that are not bundled with Confluence as the plugindata table is not backed up in a manual backup.
  • You can't import a site export XML file into an earlier version of Confluence.

Create the site export file

To create an XML export of your site:

  1. Go to  > General Configuration > Backup & Restore.
  2. Choose Also save a copy to the backups directory to store a copy of the backup in the same folder as Confluence's backups
    If you do not archive the backup it will be made available for you to download, and then deleted from the server after 24 hours.
  3. Choose Include attachments to include attachments in your backup.
  4. Choose Export.
    The process can take some time.

If you have a large site, you should temporarily disable the Clean Temporary Directory scheduled job, as this job deletes the contents of the /temp directory at 4am each day, and will delete your export files. You should re-enable this job once the export is complete.

If you repeatedly experience timeout errors, try creating the export directly from the server. This will speed up the process and prevent timeouts.

For example, use this URL:  http://localhost:8090/confluence/admin/backup.action . directly from your server. 

What's included in the export?

The site export includes spaces (including pages, blogs, comments, attachments, and unpublished changes), users and groups.  Essentially everything in your site except add-ons. 

Retrieving the site export file

Confluence will create the backup as a zipped XML file in your <home-directory>/backups> directory. You'll need access to the Confluence server itself in order to retrieve this file.

Allow export files to be downloaded from within Confluence

By default, you can't retrieve the backup file from within Confluence. This feature is disabled for security reasons, but you can choose to enable it. Once enabled, Confluence will prompt you to download the backup file when the backup process finished. We recommend that you keep this feature off in production environments.

To enable download of the backup file from within Confluence:

  1. Stop Confluence.
  2. Edit the <confluence-home>\confluence.cfg.xml file.
  3. change to true.
  4. Restart Confluence.

If the value of the above configuration property is 'true', it will be possible to download the backup file after manually backing up the site via the Confluence Administration Console. If the value of this property is 'false' or the property is not present in the configuration file, you will need to retrieve the backup file from the file system on the Confluence server. By default, the value is 'false'.

Restoring the site export file

There are some restrictions on which Confluence versions you will be able to import this file into. The most important is that you can't import into an earlier version of Confluence. See    Restoring a Site for more information and troubleshooting tips. 

Last modified on Nov 24, 2021

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