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The backup service takes copies of data on the central filestores on a regular basis.

This can be useful in many situations, ranging from recovering from a catastrophic failure, through to retrieving a single file that has been wrongly edited or deleted.



This service is available to all staff and students.

The backup service takes periodic copies of data on the various central filestores, meaning they can be restored to that point in time if needed.

This service is part of the University's Disaster Recovery process for the central IT systems, allowing data to be restored in the event of a catastrophic failure..

In addition, you may use the backup service to recover copies of files that you have altered or deleted in error.

Backed up filestores

Backups are made on central filestores as follows:

  • UserFS - your personal filestore: backed up each night
  • Storage: snapshots are taken every hour, and files can be recovered up to a maximum of 90 days after deletion

Backups are also made of some Virtual Machines (VMs) running on the central VMware virtualisation service.

Backups are retained for a maximum of 90 days.

Other specialised central filestores may also be backed up.

Requesting backups for departmental servers

By special arrangement, departmentally owned servers can be included in the backup service.

For a departmental server to be included within the backup service, it must be running an operating system that supports the backup client software. Please include details of your server's operating system when contacting us.

How to restore files from backup

Self service (for recent files)

You can restore files from backup yourself if they have been changed or deleted recently.

For UserFS (your personal filestore), you can restore files from the past 90 days.

For Storage, the owner of a file changed or deleted can restore files from the past 28 days.

Contact IT Support (for older files)

If you need older versions of files to be restored, you'll need to email IT Support with the details of the file(s), including its name and location, and when it needs to be restored from.

To have a VM restored from a backup, its administrator should contact IT Support .

Please allow three working days for us to restore your data.

Help & troubleshooting

Library & IT Help Desk

If you're having problems using the backup service, get in touch with the IT Support.

Our commitments

Service status Live and supported service.
Hours of service 24/7
Service support For help and support with this service, contact the IT Support.
Hours of support Help from the Library & IT Help Desk is available 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday.
Target availability

General IT Services targets:

  • Information Services Service Standards

Backups are made to disk and/or tape:

  • Disk storage for the backups is located in a secure data centre.
  • Tapes are located in a secure data centre, with copies periodically moved into an alternative location to guard against a major incident at the data centre.
Our performance

Our service standards have been produced in consultation with our customers, and monitor the quality, timeliness and access to facilities and services:

  • Information Services Service Standards

Complaints procedure

If you wish to give us general feedback on this service, please see our Feedback page for ways to get in touch.

If you wish to make a complaint, please see our complaints procedure.

Your responsibilities

For file restoration requests we expect you to tell us:

  • the name of the file and its location/which folder it is in
  • the date from which we should restore a copy of the file

For departmental servers included within the backup service, we expect you:

  • to keep us informed about changes to your contact details
  • to install, or allow us to install for you, on your server the client software necessary to perform backups to the backup service
  • to inform us promptly when your server no longer needs to be backed up