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Forest Backup - Client Help

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Concept of profiles

A profile defines a set of files/folders that are grouped together for backup. When the Forest Backup client is first used on any client, it automatically creates a profile and gives it a name that matches the machine's host name.

Typically, you would only need one profile per machine for a user. However, if you wish to backup certain files at a different schedule, you might want to create additional profiles.

To add files/folders to a profile, drag the desired folder from Explorer to left hand panel. You could also click the right mouse button an select Add a file or folder from the pop-up menu. There is no limit on the number of files you add to a profile.

By default every file in a folder is selected for backup. To exclude, navigate to the desired file and un-check its name.

Specifying backup parameters

Following parameters must be specified before a backup is performed.
  • Specify files to backup. This is done by either dragging a file from Windows Explorer to the left hand side of the screen or by clicking the right mouse button and selecting Add a folder/file menu item.

  • Current Profile Name - this automatically populated and contains the name of the profile currently selected

  • Remote Server URL - this should contain the URL for the Forest server.

  • Login Email - This is the email address used to log in to the Forest Backup server.

  • Login Password - This is the password for the user.

  • Remote Server Path - This is a system assigned value that is used on the server's end to store files.

  • Advanced Options - These options are all enabled by default and cannot be changed by end users.
    • Delete files from server - when checked, files will be deleted from the server if the corresponding file is deleted on the client. When this is not checked, a copy will remain on the server.

    • Send notification email - Check this box if you want the client to generate an email when a backup is completed. The box next to the check box is used to specify the recipient of the email report - by default, this is the e-mail account of the registered user.

      This email is only sent when a scheduled backup is run. Email is not generated when a user manually runs a backup.

    • Compress data - when checked, smart compression is used to before sending the data over the network. During the backup if no significant size reduction is gained by compressing a file, data gets sent as-is. Consider a scenario where you have large files containing a relational database, which can be significantly reduced in size by using compression. On the other hand, files like JPG do not reduce in size when compression is applied. In such cases, the compression step is eliminated saving CPU cycles on both client and server.

    • Enable versioning - when checked, multiple versions of every file are stored on the server. The number of older versions maintained on the server is defined by Forest. A version is only created if a user modifies a file.

  • Encryption - Use this tab to enable encryption and specify a password. Refer to this document before using encryption during backup.

Running backup manually

To run a backup on demand, simply click the Backup button.

Scheduling a backup on Microsoft Windows

On Windows, the scheduler for the client is integrated with the operating system. Every Windows machine comes with a scheduler that is used to schedule backup tasks on the client machine.

Follow these steps to schedule a backup.
  • Click Add button to add a new schedule
  • This opens up the Scheduler window.

  • Click the Schedule tab to specify a schedule

  • Click OK - Windows will prompt you for a user ID and password. Specify a valid user ID and password on your system. The backup task will be run using this login. We recommend using the same ID that owns the files that are being backed up.

  • Finally, Click OK.

Scheduling a backup on Mac OS X

Scheduling a backup task on Mac is similar to Windows but it uses the built-in scheduler that comes with OS X.

Following steps demonstrate how to schedule a backup on Mac.
  • Click the Add button at create a new schedule.
  • This opens up the scheduler window.
  • This window allow users to select the weekday and a time of the day to run the backup task. Notice that hour are represented in 24 hour time format - meaning if you want to schedule a task at 8:30 PM, you will have to select 20 for hour and 30 for minutes.
  • You should also specify a time interval to run backup. This allows you to run the backup task after every X number of minutes. For example, to run a backup every 5 hours, specify 300 minutes.

Restoring files

File restoration is accomplished either by a web browser or using the Forest Backup client.

Using web browser
Using a web browser, connect to the Forest Backup Server. The URL in the address bar must be https://backup.forest.ac. Use your email and password to login. Once logged in, a remote file explorer will be displayedcontaining files that are backed up on the server. Simply navigate to the file you want to restore and double click it to download.

Restoring encrypted files
When encryption is used, files residing on the server cannot be viewed or opened by anyone. Therefore, when you use a web-browser to download any file, they need to be decrypted manually once they have been downloaded. If you try to open the downloaded file without decrypting it first, you will get errors in the program that is trying to open it.

Use the following steps to decrypt files:
  • Download encrypted file(s) using your browser
  • Start the client on the machine
  • Click Encrypt/Decrypt files from the Tools menu
  • Select Decrypt for Conversion type
  • Specify the password you used for encryption
  • Select the desired file
  • Finally, click Start Processing

Using the Forest Backup client

You can either restore the entire profile or selectively pick the file(s) you want to restore. The client program automatically handles decrypting files if they were backed up using encryption.

Restoring entire profile

Follow the steps below to restore entire profile
  • Select the profile you want to restore. If you do not have the profile on this machine, try creating a new profile with the same name. Profile names are case-sensitive. When a new profile is created, it won't contain any folders on the left hand side. This is okay.
  • Next, click the Restore button
  • The client will first pull the profile from the server matching the name. If it is not able to pull a profile, ensure the profile name is correct.

    Once the profile is download, it will start restoring the files.

Restoring selective files

Selective files can only be restored if the profile exist on your machine. Follow the steps below to restore files using the client
  • Chose the appropriate profile from Available Profile list on the top
  • Navigate to the file you want to restore on the left hand side
  • Click the right mouse button and select Restore selected file

Restoring one folder

Use the following steps to restore a folder
  • Start the client
  • Select a desired profile
  • Navigate to a folder you would like to restore
  • Click the right mouse button to bring up a pop-up menu
  • Select Restore → Selected folder