Can managed databases be backed up outside of Digital Ocean without a third-party?

Posted September 15, 2020 1.2k views

I spun up a Postgres managed database which auto-created a backup. I noticed that this backup didn’t have any export options only restore.

Is it possible to back this up to another cloud provider?

I saw this provider can accomplish what I am asking but I was just wondering whether this is via some API or they are connecting to the DB over the internet and backup up that way.

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@ashconnor Good question.

Unfortunately, you cannot export managed database backups via the control panel or API. So all automated solutions for backing up your managed database to a different cloud will require a connection to the DB over the internet.

Despite that limitation, I think you could run a scheduled job from a DigitalOcean Droplet that does something like this at a set interval:

  1. pg_dump
  2. (optional) Encrypt the file.
  3. Upload the file to S3

These instructions for exporting a postgresql database apply equally well for our postgres db’s.

Security considerations:

  • Create a VPC and add or migrate the Droplet and Managed Database to it.
  • Use the private network connection params to run the pg_dump from the Droplet, this means all the database export network traffic will stay firewalled within your VPC within our datacenters.
  • Encrypt the output: before leaving the safety of your VPC and uploading to S3, you can encrypt the file.

Cost-savings considerations:

  • pg_dump has a --compress or -Z argument that will gzip the file, (or you could just compress it after pg_dump.) Either way that will probably help you save your bandwidth budget and storage costs wherever you send the file.