Back up a Site

You can 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 backups as your main backup method. Instead, you should regularly back up your database, installation directory, and home directories. See Production Backup Strategy for recommended methods. 
  • Marketplace and user-installed apps are not included in the XML backup, however their data is. After restoring 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 exported in this kind of backup.
  • You can't restore (import) an XML backup file into an earlier version of Confluence. Backward feature compatibility is not supported.
  • You can't restore an XML site backup file into Confluence Cloud either. Use the Confluence Cloud Migration Assistant app to do this. This is pre-installed with your Confluence installation.

What’s included in a site backup (export)?

A site backup includes, but is not limited to:

  • spaces
  • pages
  • blog posts
  • comments
  • attachments (optional)
  • draft pages and blogs
  • user and groups
  • app data

Basically, it’s everything on your site except user-installed apps. 

Create the site backup (export)

To create an XML export of your site:

  1. Go to Administration  > General Configuration > Backup and restore
  2. Select Back up site or spaces
  3. In the Create a backup screen:
    1. Select Site
    2. Give your XML export a file name prefix. Confluence will add a time stamp and unique identifier to the end of this file name. If this field is left blank, the file will be assigned a default prefix and time stamp, for example,
    3. Select Save permanently if you want your file to remain in the <confluence-home>/restore/site folder. Otherwise, the backup will be deleted in 72 hours by default to maintain storage capacity. You can change the storage time by configuring the system property confluence.backuprestore.backup.ttl-in-hours. See Configuring System Properties to learn how.
    4. Select Include attachments to include attachments in your backup
  4. Select Back up
  5. You will receive a confirmation message, select Back up now to start the task

This process can take some time for large sites.

Retrieve the site backup

Method 1

Once the back up is complete, you can download the XML backup zip file from the user interface by selecting the file name. The download link is active for 72 hours by default in case you need it later.

Method 2

Confluence will also save your XML backup zip file in the <home-directory>/restore/site folder. See Confluence Home and other important directories for more information to locate your home directory. The backup will be deleted from this location after a set amount of time if you did not choose to save it permanently during the back up process.

You'll need access to the Confluence server to retrieve the file this way.

Restore (import) the site backup

There are restrictions on which Confluence versions you can import your backup into. The most important thing is that you can't import a backup into an earlier version of Confluence or to Confluence Cloud. See Restore a Site for more information and troubleshooting tips. 

Scheduled backups

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

Last modified on Oct 13, 2023

Was this helpful?

Provide feedback about this article
Powered by Confluence and Scroll Viewport.