What are Backup Schemes in AOMEI Backupper?

Backup Scheme (also called backup rotation scheme, backup rotation and vaulting scheme) is a highlight feature in AOMEI Backupper that allows you to better organize your backup storage space with efficient backup strategy. AOMEI Backupper offers 5 different backup strategies according to different users' needs. 

This software offers 3 common backup schemes, including full backup scheme, incremental backup scheme, differential backup scheme, and 2 other backup schemes, namely space management scheme and other backup schemes.

One of the most important points is using a backup scheme will automatically delete backup image files based on the type of scheme you choose, which is quite helpful in saving disk space as well as keeping all backups up to date.

These 5 backup schemes will be detailed in the following paragraph. Let's take a closer look. Please download AOMEI Backupper Professional or advanced version first.

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How to create a Backup Scheme task?

Method 1. Find Scheme from a backup operation

If you have not created a backup task yet, then click "Backup" and select the required backup type from the list presented (For example, File Backup).  Click the "Backup Scheme" button to configure the backup rotation scheme and settings.

Backup Scheme New Backup

Method 2. Create Scheme from a backup task

If you have created a file backup task but you have not enabled the "Scheme" feature, you can first click the three-line icon and then click the "Edit Backup" option to enable the backup rotation and vaulting scheme as shown in the picture below.

Backup Scheme Edit Backup

And then please click the "Scheme" button to configure the backup scheme and settings, you can use AOMEI Backupper incremental backup, AOMEI Backupper differential backup, and more. After the backup scheme is configured, please click the "Save" button to save the settings.

Backup Scheme Existing Backup Configure

How to Configure Backup Scheme in AOMEI Backupper?

1. Configure Backup Method

In this section, please select a backup method to perform the backup. There are 3 backup methods available: full backup, incremental backup, and differential backup. The incremental backup is selected by default. For more about backup differential vs incremental, please check more details here.

Configure Backup Method

If the incremental backup or differential backup scheme is selected, you also need to configure backup intervals so that after a certain number of incremental/differential backups, one full backup will be performed automatically. The full backup and these incremental/differential backups make up a backup cycle (group).

Backup Intervals

Full Backup: Perform a full backup every time.

Incremental Backup: Perform a full backup at first, and then perform an incremental backup each time.

You also need to check and set the option “After n incremental backups, perform one full backup”, that is, the set number of times plus one is used as a backup cycle (group), which includes one full backup and several incremental backups. It is necessary to enable incremental backup to perform the backup rotation scheme.

Differential Backup: Perform a full backup at first, and then perform a differential backup each time.

You also need to check and set the option “After n differential backups, perform one full backup”, that is, the set number of times plus one is used as a backup cycle (group), which includes one full backup and several differential backups. It is necessary to enable differential backup to perform the backup rotation scheme.

 

Note:

  • Only configure backup method and backup interval will not enable the backup scheme. To enable the backup scheme, you also need to enable automatic backup cleanup.
  • To enable automatic backup cleanup, you must configure backup intervals for incremental backup and differential backup. For full backup, there is no need to set the backup intervals.
  • Once the backup method is configured, the program will run schedule backup and clean up backup images as per the backup method you select in this section. For example, if you configure incremental backup in this section, the program will always run full+incremental scheduled backups and will automatically clean up backup images as per the corresponding incremental backup cleanup rules.

 

2. Configure Automatic Backup Cleanup

After the backup method and the backup interval are configured in above step 1, you still need another step to enable the backup scheme.

In this section, please activate the option "Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup". Once the option “Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup” is activated, the backup scheme is activated so that the program will automatically clean up image files and save your disk space usage.

Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup

There are 4 cleanup rules available in total. The cleanup rules include: by quantity, by time, by day/week/month, and by space. Combined with the different backup methods described above, the cleanup rules will be different. Please check the below cleanup rules as per the different backup methods you select.

Note: In the following article, the "n" refers to the value you set in the backup cleanup rule.

1). By quantity

By Quantity

Full Backup: Only keep the last "n" backups. When the number of backups exceeds the set value, the old backups will be automatically deleted.

Incremental Backup: Only the most recent "n" groups of backups are kept. A backup group includes a full backup and multiple incremental backups. When the number of groups exceeds the set value, the old backup group will be automatically deleted.

Differential Backup: Only keep the last "n" backups. When the number of backups exceeds the set value, the old backups will be automatically deleted. The differential backup is deleted first, and the full backup is deleted at last.

2). By time 

By Time

Full Backup: Only keep backups of the last "n" days/weeks/months. When the backup time exceeds the set value, the old backup will be deleted automatically.

Incremental Backup: Only keep backups of the last "n" days/weeks/months. When the backup time exceeds the set value, the old backup group will be deleted automatically. A backup group includes a full backup and multiple incremental backups. When the last backup in the group exceeds the set value, the old backup group will be automatically deleted.

Differential Backup: Only keep backups of the last "n" days/weeks/months. When the backup time exceeds the set value, the old backup will be deleted automatically. The differential backup is deleted first, and the full backup is deleted at last.

3). By daily/weekly/monthly

By Daily/Weekly/Monthly

Full Backup:  In the last "n" days, keep all backups; When the set number of days is exceeded, the old backups will be automatically deleted according to the weekly rule;

In the last "n" weeks, a full backup will be kept every week, and when the set number of weeks is exceeded, the old backups will be automatically deleted according to the monthly rule;

In the last "n" months, a full backup is kept every month. When the set number of months is exceeded, the old backup will be automatically deleted.

Incremental Backup: In the last "n" days, all backups are kept every day. When the set number of days is exceeded, the old backups will be automatically deleted according to the weekly rule;

In the last "n" weeks, all full backups will be kept every week. When the set number of weeks is exceeded, the old backups will be automatically deleted according to the monthly rule;

In the last "n" recent months, keep a full backup every month. When the set number of months is exceeded, the old backup will be automatically deleted.

Differential Backup: In the last "n" days, keep all backups. When the set number of days is exceeded, the old backups will be automatically deleted according to the weekly rule;

In the last "n" weeks, all full backups will be kept every week, and when the set number of weeks is exceeded, the old ones will be automatically deleted according to the monthly rule;

In the last "n" months, a full backup is kept every month. When the set number of months is exceeded, the old backup will be automatically deleted.

Example:

If your settings are: full backup method, 7 days + 4 weeks + 6 months.

The cleanup rules will be: Delete all backups made 6 months ago; keep one full backup every month during the last 4 weeks to 6 months; keep one full backup every week from the last 7 days to 4 weeks; keep all backups for the last 7 days.

4). By space

By Space

When the backup exceeds one group and the space is insufficient, the old backups will be automatically deleted until enough space is available to store the new backups. Only differential backup supports backup cleanup by space.

A backup group includes a full backup and several differential backups. The program will first delete the differential backups one by one in a backup group, and then delete the full backup of the group.

 

Note:

  • When the option “Create one full backup and always retain it before performing the scheme” is ticked, an additional full backup will be created as the original version, and the original version will never be cleaned up.
  • If you have performed several backups (full, incremental, differential) before enabling the backup scheme through “Advanced” -> “Edit Backup” -> “Backup Scheme” on the task, these backup files will not be deleted automatically by the scheme.
  • After the option “Enable Automatic Backup Cleanup” is enabled, the backup scheme is activated, and the backup task can only be executed in accordance with the set backup method in the backup scheme.