Scheduling a Backup

Since Confluence 8.3, we have changed the way we perform backup and restore. Learn more about these changes in the Confluence 8.3 Release Notes.

Scheduled backups don't use this new approach; it still uses our legacy system. We recommend you stop using scheduled backups unless required because it contains many of the issues resolved in the new system.

See Production Backup Strategy for recommended methods.

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

  • If you have a Confluence Data Center license, the scheduled backup is disabled by default. It is known to cause outages in large sites.

  • If you have a Confluence Server license, the scheduled XML backup happens every day at 2:00 am by default.

The zipped XML backup file will be named  'backup-yyyy_MM_dd', and stored in the backups directory of your Confluence Home directory. For example, <shared-home>/backups

On this page:

This page describes how you can:

  • enable or disable the scheduled backups (in Confluence Data Center it is disabled by default)

  • change the naming convention

  • include or exclude attachments

  • schedule the backup at a different time

  • store the backup files in a different location

You'll need System Administrator permissions to do this.

Configure automated backups

To configure these daily scheduled XML site backups:

  1. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > Backup administration 
  2. Select Edit to:
    • change the backup file name prefix
    • use a different date format (uses the syntax described in simple date format)
    • choose whether to include or exclude attachments from backups (attachments are included by default)
    • choose to store backup files in a custom location (this is disabled by default - see Enabling backup path configuration below)
  3. Save your changes


Enable Backup Path Configuration

For security reasons, the ability to change the backup file location Backup administration screen is disabled by default. 

To enable custom backup paths:

  1. Stop Confluence
  2. Edit the <confluence-home>/confluence.cfg.xml file
  3. Change the value of the following property to true:

    <property name="admin.ui.allow.daily.backup.custom.location">true</property>
  4. Restart Confluence to pick up the change
  5. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > Backup administration to enter the new path

The directory must be on either a local drive or a mounted network drive. Make sure the mounted drive is on a physical server and not a Virtual Machine image. 

If you migrate Confluence to a new server or change your architecture, you will need to update this path.  Changing your home directory location will not automatically update your backup file path if you've enabled a custom path.  

Enable/disable scheduled backups

If you have an appropriate Production Backup Strategy, you should disable automatic backups to save on disk space. 

To turn on/off scheduled backups:

  1. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > Scheduled jobs
  2. Choose Disable next to the Back up Confluence job

Change the backup schedule

To change the frequency of backups, or to change the time the backup runs each day:

  1. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > Scheduled jobs
  2. Choose Edit next to the Back up Confluence job
  3. Enter the new schedule using a cron expression

The time zone used for the scheduled job is taken from the server on which Confluence is running. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > System Information to look up the System Time

Perform manual backups

If you need a one-off XML backup, you can manually perform a site export. See Manually Backing Up the Site for more information. 

These backup files are not saved to the same location as the scheduled backups, they are saved in the restore directory of your Confluence Home directory, for example <shared-home>/restore/site.

Last modified on May 25, 2023

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