XML Backups and Space Export/Import Troubleshooting

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Atlassian recommends disabling the XML backup both for performance and reliability. Setting up a test server and the Production Backup Strategy is better done with an SQL dump. Upgrading Confluence is better done without the XML backup.

The one operation for which an XML backup is required is database migration. For this we recommend a commercial database migration tool. Vote for XML Backups and Space Export/Import Troubleshooting to add a more robust strategy for large implementation migrations. Atlassian does not support migrating to a new database.

Resolve Errors With Creating An XML Backup

To track progress or enable debug logging on a space export/import, you can:

  • Go to General Configuration → Logging and Profiling
  • Add the following entry:
    • com.atlassian.hibernate.extras.XMLDatabinder
  • Set the logging level to DEBUG
  • Details will be printed to the confluence-home/logs/atlassian-confluence.log

The errors may be caused by a slightly corrupt database. If you're seeing errors such as 'Couldn't backup database data' in your logs, this guide will help you correct the error on your own. In general you'll want to enable SQL logging with parameters, which requires stopping Confluence and modifying log4j.properties, as described in Enabling detailed SQL logging. We strongly recommend that you backup your database and your Confluence home directory beforehand, so that you can restore your site from those if required. If you are unfamiliar with SQL, contact your database administrator for assistance.

Preferable Solution

The alternative backup strategy is a reliable and efficient way to do backups. If you are running into problems with XML backups - whether memory related or because of problems like the one described here - use a native backup tool instead.

To Prevent Issues from Occurring

  1. If you are using the embedded database, be aware that it is bundled for evaluation purposes and does not offer full transactional integrity in the event of sudden power loss, which is why an external database is recommended for production use. You should migrate to an external database.
  2. Upgrade Confluence to the latest version.

Troubleshoot Creating a Backup

Troubleshoot Restoring a Backup

Backup FAQs

Open JIRA Bugs, Improvements and Feature Requests

type key summary priority status

Data cannot be retrieved due to an unexpected error.

View these issues in Jira

Last modified on Jan 29, 2020

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