Daily\hourly backups

Posted March 31, 2017 24.3k views

Hi guys,

Does anybody know if Digital ocean can provide storage for backups? Weekly backups looks really strange for dynamic projects.


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9 answers

Hey, guys,

I know I’m a bit late to the party, but I can see BackupSheep has posted a link to there services.

We also provide a service dedicated to Digital Ocean that allows between hourly to daily backups of droplets and volumes with archiving of daily, weekly and monthly snapshots.

  • I thought I would give a bit more information, as a lot of people find us through this link.

    We have a free account for daily backups of one droplet!

    Key Features

    • Snapshot replication (We will copy your snapshots to a second region)
    • Timezone and schedule support
    • Hourly, Daily, Weekly and Monthly retention policies
    • Volume Backups (not offered by DigitalOcean)
    • Manage Multiple DigitalOcean accounts

    You can see out community page

    If you use this link, you can get 10% off

    • We are a hosting company with dedicated servers within a vsphere environment using replication every 30 minutes aswell as R1 backups.
      We have VPS’s running cpanel shared hosting.

      I’ve looked several times at moving to DO but struggled with the backup/replication aspect.
      I ran a few tests lasy year and experimented with snapshooter, however I discovered the snapshots took a long time to run and every snapshot was full, not incremental. VMWare has incremental CDT which tracks the changes and only backs up changed data.

      Whilst it’s no fault of snapshooter (which is excellent for adding the ability to do multiple snapshots) it seems DO have very limited snapshot functionality. A full snapshot of an *)gb cpanel server each hour uses an incredible amount of space within a short time, whereas incremental uses much much less even over a month.

      On this basis, I’m unable to find a viable solution yet.

I’ve had some success backing MySql data.

I’ve set up automysqlbackup for data. Its super easy to get started. It does daily/weekly/monthly backups out of the box. I’m sure you can configure hourly backups as well.

apt-get install automysqlbackup

I then added a small storage volume to my droplet and symlinked the backup folder to that other device so I’m not actually storing the backups on the same device.

ln /mnt/backup-volume/var/lib/automysqlbackup /var/lib/automysqlbackup

Alternatively you could set up some storage with another service, e.g. Amazon S3 and rsync your backup folder to there so you aren’t relying on a single vendor.

Haven’t yet sorted out an easy solution for other data.

As I see some other solutions have been posted here, I’ll share the one I’ve been working on too.

We’ve been working on a solution for backing up your projects while keeping things super simple and quick to setup.

We’ve recently added a Zapier integration allowing you to trigger the backups from where you want and when you want.
You can find the documentation on how to do this here:

Hello, I have written a simple script for snapshot automation which take new snapshot every hour and delete old snapshot.

You can try my script

Thank you :)


You’re able to generate your own backups using either Snapshots, or running you own server-side.

Snapshots generate full-state backups, meaning they take a snapshot of the entire server, thus they are meant to restore the entire server, including the OS, software, services and data. They function as an image and you can’t restore anything specific – it’s all or nothing.

If you specifically need data backups – content, uploads, databases, etc – and you don’t need a full image backup of the entire server, you’d need to generate the backups on your own as DigitalOcean doesn’t provide the means for hourly/daily/weekly/monthly backups in this fashion just yet.

You can take snapshots instead of using the backup feature. Then you have full control of when you want the “backup”.

are the backups quiesced, (consistent)?
For example if we were running a cpanel server with databases and accounts, VMWare has quiesced backup so it is in a consistent state, whereas some other backups are just snapshots and not consistent.

Could someone give me a quick breakdown of backup versus snapshot and when to use either?

We would one use an external service to do snapshots instead of the tools provided by Digital Ocean? Why would one use an external service to do backups instead of the tools provided by Digital Ocean?

  • Services like snapshooter give you more management over having multiple snapshots, I think you can schedule them hourly etc whereas in DO control panel you can just take manual snapshots which are useless for dynamic businesses.
    The only issue I have is that the snapshots are all full, not incremental and take up huge space aswell as the time to run.
    I think too many people just view the cloud to be 100% failsafe and nothing ever goes down. That’s not always the case as things can corrupt, errors can be made, software upgrade issues etc where a restore is needed quickly and easily.

    Backups vs snapshots

    Create snapshots to save on-demand copies of DigitalOcean Droplets or volumes to your account. Use snapshots to create new Droplets and volumes with the same contents.
    Enable backups to automatically create system-level disk images of Droplets on a weekly schedule with no configuration required.

    So backups are automatic, weekly, LOL… in 2019.
    Snapshots are manual but can be automated with services like snapshooter etc

There are specific problems with both snapshots and incremental backups. I would like to explain a bit more so an educated decision can be made.

If you have more than one application/ client hosted on a droplet - going via snapshot route means you cant simply restore or allow self-service kind of option for your clients to restore their specific data. more often than not, it’s not the server which goes down/crashes but its the human errors - DB deleted by developer/ files overwritten or deleted and so on. in some cases, due to hacking issues backup is needed to be restored.

In all these cases, restoring a new droplet and finding the codes/ db for a specific client and then migrating to the main droplet can be a lot of efforts.

In the above scenario, its best to have a third party service like code-guard etc setup that will automatically backup the codes (incremental basis) once everyday. restore to original/ direct server is very easy as well.

Snapshots are a good way to backup the whole setup - server optimization, OS, and everythnig else setup on the server. Best-case scenarios are when something majorly goes wrong with the original droplet and rather than fixing the issue - you/ team feels that restoring the whole droplet is easier and more viable.

Services like R1, Acronis can take care of both the things. Server level backups and restore + code/ file/ db level restore. We use these services for our Dedicated servers. Yet to find out if the same can work with DO.

Challenge using R1/ Acronis with DO resellers - the backup agent needs to be setup to every droplet individually. May not be viable for automation/ auto setups. May be some kind of template can be built and used to create more droplets and change the agent ID etc once and its all setup and ready.