Forcing a full backup out of schedule

Situation

In order to save bandwidth and computing resources, each backup plan type supports block-level scheduling. It allows uploading only the changed increments of the source data, as opposed to performing a full dataset reupload on each run of the plan.

Scheduled full backup runs are still necessary (for example, on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis) to keep the backup chain stable and the data retention policy active.

In certain situations, however, it is a good practice to force a full backup outside of its regular schedule. Main reasons to do so are troubleshooting backup chain inconsistencies and retention policy issues, as well as creating additional full restore points.

Solution

Please refer to the section below that corresponds to the type of backup plan you need to force a full backup for:

Image-based backup

For an image-based backup plan, please navigate to the “Backup Plans” tab, expand the needed plan, and use the “Force Full Backup” button:

VMWare/Hyper-V backup

For a VMware / Hyper-V virtual machine backup, please navigate to the “Backup Plans” tab, expand the required plan, and use the “Force Full Backup” button:

Exchange backup

For a Microsoft Exchange database backup, please navigate to the “Backup Plans” tab, expand the necessary plan, and use the “Force Full Backup” button:

Microsoft SQL backup

For a Microsoft SQL Server database backup, please navigate to the “Backup Plans” tab, expand the necessary plan, and use the “Play” button:

File-level backup

File-level backup plans do not have an option to force a full backup of the source dataset. However, instead it is possible to schedule incremental backups by opening the Backup Plan Wizard and editing the Schedule Options:

Instead of uploading just the changed portions of the files modified since the last backup execution, incremental backup will upload such files in full. Unmodified files already present on the destination storage, however, will not be reuploaded.

As with full backups in other plan types, it is strongly recommended to have incremental backups scheduled regularly (for example, weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly) for the file-level plans.

Note that file-level incremental backup can also be forced out of schedule, in a similar way to other backup types: