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    Backup, Backup and More Backup

    My HS wasn't shut down properly and all my events and all my devices were gone. It was a MAJOR PITA when this happened in the past because all the data is in the C:/program files(x86)/HS4 folder and my backup program refuses to backup anything in those folders. So I had to redo pretty much everything. Did I say MAJOR PITA?!! While the problem hasn't been resolved, HS at least has a fairly ok backup feature. I do backups every day for the max of 15 days. You probably also want to do additional backups in case your c drive breaks. jon00 supposedly has a good backup plugin. In any case, after this crash I could just go to the HS restore option and I was back in business. It really shouldn't be necessary. I never had a program so sensitive to unexpected shutdowns. Even Chrome reopens my tabs, etc but at least there is some solution. Just make sure you enable those backups. HS also offers cloud backups for higher levels of service (I don't use them). I just wanted to put this out there because it is a BBIIGG issue if this happens and as I said, HS is very prone to this problem. So if you are new to HS, enable those backups...


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    #2
    mulu I understand the pain! I thought maybe it was just the Pi version that was prone to this. So, it happens on Windows too... Bummer.
    I just do the backups manually when I make changes. Adding devices, renaming, adding/changing events. As long as nothing's changed, I don't bother with daily backups.
    I even SSH into my Pi to grab the Z-Wave interface backups and copy them to my Windows box so in case the whole Pi gets corrupted, I can copy them back and be up and running pretty quickly.

    Comment


      #3
      Being new to HS4 from HS3, does the HS4 backup save the entire HS4 folder or just the json configuration file(s)? I've used BLBACKUP for years with HS3 daily, and was also going to implement the same for HS4 when I go production. However, this might be redundant if HS4 is doing the same thing.
      HS3PRO 3.0.0.500 as a Fire Daemon service, Windows 2016 Server Std Intel Core i5 PC HTPC Slim SFF 4GB, 120GB SSD drive, WLG800, RFXCom, TI103,NetCam, UltraNetcam3, BLBackup, CurrentCost 3P Rain8Net, MCsSprinker, HSTouch, Ademco Security plugin/AD2USB, JowiHue, various Oregon Scientific temp/humidity sensors, Z-Net, Zsmoke, Aeron Labs micro switches, Amazon Echo Dots, WS+, WD+ ... on and on.

      Comment


        #4
        QuikDraw yes, it happens on Windows, too. From what I have read on the forum, HS frequently writes to the files and if the system shuts down during that time then the data is lost. I now also do manual backups when making major changes or changes where I am not sure if I might mess something up. I just copy the entire HS4 folder.

        langenet it seems to store it in C:\Program Files (x86)\HomeSeer HS4\html\backups The zip file contains other zip files, i.e. config.zip, data.zip, html.zip and scripts.zip. So it backs up more than just the json files but not the entire HS4 folder.

        Comment


          #5
          The built in backup will backup the data, config, scripts and html directories. For this I prefer BLBackup because it can backup the entire directory structure. The built in backup will be enough to restore a system, as long as you install HS all plugins and register them all. The built in and BLBackup both suffer from one shortcoming, they cannot copy in-use files. For that reason I prefer Macirum Reflect because it uses Microsoft’s volume shadow copy which takes a snapshot and backs up even in-use files. Acronis and others also use the same method.

          I don’t use native backup at all, backup twice daily with BLBackup and a complete server backup daily with Macirum. If I need to restore the whole system, I use the Macirum image. If I just need a single file (events, devices, etc) I’ll go to the BLBackup. I’ve been using the same process for about 8 years.
          HS4 Pro, 4.2.19.0 Windows 10 pro, Supermicro LP Xeon

          Comment


            #6
            I'm a bit dumbfounded why people even bother to use the HS built-in backup or backup plug-ins... what purpose does it serve??

            I simply use one of the many free backup programs that utilize the Windows built-in volume shadow copy service, which means you are always getting accurate point-in-time backups, even on open data base files. I simply run backups of the complete HS4 directory every night, and an ad hoc backup before every upgrade or major change. If something goes wrong, no big deal, I simply roll back to the previous backup. Takes literally a minute or so. I can even restore individual files from any of the backups.

            Why are people making this so complicated??

            Comment


              #7
              I run Homeseer in Docker and backing up containers is a breeze...

              That said, I'd probably try to restore from the Homeseer backup first if something went awry. I used the backup when I went from Windows to Linux (running on docker).
              HS3 Pro Edition 3.0.0.435 (Windows Server 8.1 on ESXi box)

              Plug-Ins Enabled:
              Z-Wave:,RaspberryIO:,AirplaySpeak:,Ecobee:,
              weatherXML:,JowiHue:,APCUPSD:,PHLocation:,Chromecast:,EasyTr igger:

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by TC1 View Post
                I simply use one of the many free backup programs that utilize the Windows built-in volume shadow copy service,
                just curious, which one do you use?
                Thx
                - Formerly known as 123qweasd (account got corrupted...)
                HS4, HSTile, ESP based devices and sensors, Tasmota, OpenMQTTGateway, RTL433, DIY ground plane antenna, BlueIris + LAN cams, USB-UIRT, ATON DLA6, WACUP, Multiple Android tablets for control. Plug-Ins Enabled: mcsMQTT, Restart, EnvCan, EasyTrigger, CM15A, BLLAN, BLBackup, Pushover + multiple Jon00 tools​

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Homeseer666 View Post

                  just curious, which one do you use?
                  Thx
                  I use BLBackup and I also recommend Syncovery, which I use as a backup backup.
                  HomeSeer Version: HS4 Pro Edition 4.2.19.0 (Windows - Running as a Service)
                  Operating System: Microsoft Windows 11 Pro - Desktop
                  Z-Wave Devices via two Z-Net G3s
                  Zigbee Devices via RaspBee on RPi 3b+
                  WiFi Devices via Internal Router.

                  Enabled Plug-Ins
                  AK SmartDevice 4.0.5.1,AK Weather 4.0.5.134,AmbientWeather 3.0.1.9,Big6 3.44.0.0,BLBackup 2.0.63.0,BLGData 3.0.55.0,BLLock 3.0.39.0,BLUPS 2.0.26.0,Device History 4.5.0.2,EasyTrigger 3.0.0.76,Harmony Hub 4.0.14.0,HSBuddy 4.48.707.0,JowiHue 4.1.0.3,LG ThinQ 4.0.24.4,SDJ-Health 3.1.1.4,TPLinkSmartHome4 2022.12.30.0,UltraCID3 3.0.6681.34300,Z-Wave 4.1.0.3

                  Comment


                    #10
                    Originally posted by Homeseer666 View Post

                    just curious, which one do you use?
                    Thx
                    I use the free version of Paragon backup, there's really not much it can't do.
                    Backup & Recovery Community Edition | Paragon Software Group (paragon-software.com)

                    I've been doing IT for 4 decades now, years ago I was an in-the-trenches administrator so trust me when I say I've seen every kind of system failure imaginable.

                    My strategy:
                    • Build the base system that will host HS4 (or any application), install the OS, patch it up-to-date, then check the event/system logs for any errors. Tweak and fix the system until the logs are as error free as possible. Adjust the base system to my preferences (file views, config changes, etc). Check logs again to assure error-free (as possible). Install any basic utilities that will be used day-to-day. Again, check system logs.
                    • Once system is in a desirable state, do a file clean-up, clear browser caches, defrag the partition/disk. Again, check the system logs.
                    • The system is now considered in a golden state... do a system image/partition backup. If I had to start completely over due to the system/application becoming problematic in the future, I would simply restore this image, patch it up to date, check system logs, then create a new "golden" image. Then reinstall the application, restore the application directory from a recent backup.
                    • Assuming my application/HS4 is installed error-free, I do a daily backup of the complete HS4 directory and sub-directories. This is not a lot of data, so I keep several weeks of backups and can rollback to any point in time. I do not do backups of the OS and other directories because I am extremely strict about critical systems: nothing else runs or gets changed on this system except HS4 and other necessary home automation apps, I don't even browse the Internet on this system, if I need a file from somewhere I download it on my desktop system, scan it for viruses, then transfer it over to the HS4 system. Backups are stored on both a separate disk partition on the system (ease of access/speed) and a separate NAS on my network.
                    • If upgrading or patching anything, trigger an ad hoc backup of HS4 or the disk partition, with an SSD, backups and restores are lightning fast. If something mucks up during the upgrade, no big deal and I do a restore. I'm literally back to normal in minutes.
                    • Somebody is going to say, "why don't you store the backup in the cloud??". Hey, for critical things like irreplaceable photos, documents, etc, yes, I also store those off-premises somewhere. Don't forget though that my HS4 related backups are in at least two different systems in my house... if something was to happen that would take out all those systems (ie, like a fire or hurricane, which did happen to me), then I've got bigger problems/priorities than getting my home automation up and running
                    I read about all the issues people have on these forums and I've never had HS4 corrupt on me... I suspect it's due to my best practices. I run HS4 on an old laptop, which means it has a built-in UPS, which means it's extremely rare the system ever improperly shuts down. I run HS4 on a Win7 Enterprise OS, so no unexpected Windows Updates and reboots. And finally, I only use the system for HS4 and directly related applications.

                    Just my 2-cents.

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by TC1 View Post

                      I use the free version of Paragon backup, there's really not much it can't do.
                      Backup & Recovery Community Edition | Paragon Software Group (paragon-software.com)

                      I've been doing IT for 4 decades now, years ago I was an in-the-trenches administrator so trust me when I say I've seen every kind of system failure imaginable.

                      My strategy:
                      • Build the base system that will host HS4 (or any application), install the OS, patch it up-to-date, then check the event/system logs for any errors. Tweak and fix the system until the logs are as error free as possible. Adjust the base system to my preferences (file views, config changes, etc). Check logs again to assure error-free (as possible). Install any basic utilities that will be used day-to-day. Again, check system logs.
                      • Once system is in a desirable state, do a file clean-up, clear browser caches, defrag the partition/disk. Again, check the system logs.
                      • The system is now considered in a golden state... do a system image/partition backup. If I had to start completely over due to the system/application becoming problematic in the future, I would simply restore this image, patch it up to date, check system logs, then create a new "golden" image. Then reinstall the application, restore the application directory from a recent backup.
                      • Assuming my application/HS4 is installed error-free, I do a daily backup of the complete HS4 directory and sub-directories. This is not a lot of data, so I keep several weeks of backups and can rollback to any point in time. I do not do backups of the OS and other directories because I am extremely strict about critical systems: nothing else runs or gets changed on this system except HS4 and other necessary home automation apps, I don't even browse the Internet on this system, if I need a file from somewhere I download it on my desktop system, scan it for viruses, then transfer it over to the HS4 system. Backups are stored on both a separate disk partition on the system (ease of access/speed) and a separate NAS on my network.
                      • If upgrading or patching anything, trigger an ad hoc backup of HS4 or the disk partition, with an SSD, backups and restores are lightning fast. If something mucks up during the upgrade, no big deal and I do a restore. I'm literally back to normal in minutes.
                      • Somebody is going to say, "why don't you store the backup in the cloud??". Hey, for critical things like irreplaceable photos, documents, etc, yes, I also store those off-premises somewhere. Don't forget though that my HS4 related backups are in at least two different systems in my house... if something was to happen that would take out all those systems (ie, like a fire or hurricane, which did happen to me), then I've got bigger problems/priorities than getting my home automation up and running
                      I read about all the issues people have on these forums and I've never had HS4 corrupt on me... I suspect it's due to my best practices. I run HS4 on an old laptop, which means it has a built-in UPS, which means it's extremely rare the system ever improperly shuts down. I run HS4 on a Win7 Enterprise OS, so no unexpected Windows Updates and reboots. And finally, I only use the system for HS4 and directly related applications.

                      Just my 2-cents.

                      Thx, was simply asking because I've been using BLBackup for a while, both on HS3 and HS4 and never seen anything else than "0 files in use".
                      So I doubt I'm missing anything. But could consider one of the Windows built-in volume shadow copy service so I can extend backups to the full disk.

                      Typical BLbackup log:

                      Code:
                      16,443 files were processed
                      0 files in use
                      1 zip archive(s) deleted
                      Backup time: 2 hrs, 33 mins, 38 secs
                      - Formerly known as 123qweasd (account got corrupted...)
                      HS4, HSTile, ESP based devices and sensors, Tasmota, OpenMQTTGateway, RTL433, DIY ground plane antenna, BlueIris + LAN cams, USB-UIRT, ATON DLA6, WACUP, Multiple Android tablets for control. Plug-Ins Enabled: mcsMQTT, Restart, EnvCan, EasyTrigger, CM15A, BLLAN, BLBackup, Pushover + multiple Jon00 tools​

                      Comment


                        #12
                        Regarding using a HS4 itself or a plugin to do backups, my other point is that unless there's something special that needs to happen (ie, a database or file needs to be specifically quiesced by the application), then relying on HS4 to back itself up is not a wise choice. The backup and restore process should exist outside of the application in order to ensure independence and reliability.

                        Comment


                          #13
                          Originally posted by TC1 View Post
                          I'm a bit dumbfounded why people even bother to use the HS built-in backup or backup plug-ins... what purpose does it serve??
                          <snip>
                          Why are people making this so complicated??
                          In my case I am using backblaze to backup all the data online (in case the house burns down, an earthquake crashes my drives incl backup drives, etc). I like backblaze in general except that it completely refuses to backup anything within the programs folder. For a while I have also used a local backup solution in addition to backblaze. I could and should do this again (it has some advantages if you just deal with a failed drives, etc). However, to recover HS from HS backups has been really easy.

                          The main reason for my original post was that HS is VERY(!!) easily corrupted (all events and devices gone) by a forced/unexpected shutdown. So really, really have backups which you should have anyways.

                          On another note, I just discovered (after my initial post) that HS only does 4 days of backup instead of the 15 I specified

                          Comment


                            #14
                            If my house burns down, restoring HomeSeer would not be on the list of concerns 😉
                            HS4 Pro, 4.2.19.0 Windows 10 pro, Supermicro LP Xeon

                            Comment


                              #15
                              Originally posted by randy View Post
                              If my house burns down, restoring HomeSeer would not be on the list of concerns 😉
                              Well, having copies of all my HSTouch screens, events that required a lot of tweaking, etc is still useful to have even if the new house would be completely different. But in general I agree. That statement was meant for general backup of my data to the cloud (files incl. pictures, videos, account data, etc).

                              Comment

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