Backing Up and Restoring College Office Data

ABOUT -> Security -> Restoring College Office data


Backing up your data:

College Office performs a daily backup of your data which is then compressed and encrypted via AES-256 encryption using a password of your choice. This backup is then uploaded to our Google Drive account where it is shared it with you via an email address you should have provided us. You have two more options to access your backup:

  • A user with the Administrator role can download the latest encrypted daily backup from the My Institution page. This feature is not available by default but must be requested: you should first review carefully who has been granted the Administrator role before requesting it (run the report People With Online Access with Term set to Any Term and Role set to Administrator.) There is no charge to set that up: just contact us.
  • You also have the option of letting college Office automatically upload your daily encrypted backup to a FTP or SFTP server of your choice. This feature is not available by default but must be requested. There is no charge to set that up: just contact us. Your FTP/SFTP server must be fast enough to receive large files fairly quickly: we will disable this feature if your server is too slow in relation to the size of your backup.

To configure the backup of your data click Setup on the lower right of the Home Page, then click My Institution and select the Custom tab. From this tab set the following fields (all under the Backup category):

  • Encryption Password: this is the password used to encrypt your backup. If you do not enter a password we will generate a random one for you the first time we run a backup.
  • Upload Protocol: select NONE (default) if you do not have an FTP or SFTP server, otherwise select FTP or SFTP depending on the file server your are using.
  • Upload Address: enter the address of your FTP or SFTP server (for example the IP address of the server)
  • Upload Username: enter the username used to access your FTP or SFTP server.
  • Upload Password: enter the password used to access your FTP or SFTP server.
  • Upload Port: enter the port number of the SFTP server (22 by default.)

Restoring your data:

  • Download a copy of your latest encrypted backup.
  • Using the 64-bits version of 7-Zip or WinZip, decompress the zip file: you will be prompted for your Encryption Password.
  • The decompressed file is a standard Microsoft SQL Server backup file which can be restored to any instance of Microsoft SQL Server 2016 or later (the restored backup gives you a fully structured relational database with primary keys and foreign keys but without the relationships themselves.) You can download the free SQL Server Express edition from https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/sql-server/sql-server-downloads

Notes:

  • It is your responsibility to make sure that you are able to retrieve and decompress your backup: you should regularly practice a disaster recovery exercise at least once a year, preferably more often.
  • This is provided to you as an insurance policy in case a catastrophic event would permanently prevent us from operating or you from accessing our system, or in case you would want to move your data to another provider. You will need to bring this data to another service provider so they can import it into their system.

© College Office, 2021 • Updated: 09/20/21
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