Zimbra OSE Backup on External Storage with Zextras

Email backup is an essential part of any business infrastructure. Even a single email can contain some critical data that might be crucial for business continuity. Backup as a means of data protection can come to the rescue in case of a disaster. For instance, the mailbox can be corrupted as a result of system crashes, hardware failure, or virus attacks, there is also always the chance of deleting some emails during some operations on the mailbox or intentional sabotage.

In all of the mentioned cases, the server backup can be simply transferred to a different server to return the Zimbra OSE back to work. Although it can be effective and reliable in the situations mentioned before, it is by no means adequate. Imagine a situation in which fire or large physical damage destroys the server drives completely, in such scenarios there is a good chance the backup drives would be destroyed too. That is why it is so important to have the possibility of backing up data on external storage.

How Zextras Suite Solves it

Zextras Suite backup introduces a feature that allows you to store its data on a third-party store. This function gives you the possibility of performing backup remotely on the cloud or external storage. This would be a powerful choice for secure data backup since the backup files will remain available regardless of whatever your server is going through. Zextras backup allows you to store the backup data on S3 cloud storage or on NFS/FUSE local network storage. In both cases, the backup is stored separately from the server which secures data even if the server is physically destroyed. The structure of stored data is similar to the one of the backup path. The difference is that the metadata of mailboxes is compressed in a single .tar.gz file instead of being stored uncompressed in multiple subfolders.

Zextras Suite Backup Procedure

The process of initializing a backup on S3 storage using Zextras backup is really simple. It depends on whether you have initialized a backup on your server or not. If you have a new server with no backup configured, you can easily initialize the backup via the zxsuite backup setBackupVolume S3 command to connect an S3 bucket as a backup path. Alternatively, if you have already configured a backup locally, you should use another powerful feature of the Zextras Suite to migrate the existing backup data to an S3 bucket via the zxsuite backup migrateBackupVolume S3 command. If you need to use the backup to restore your data, you should first connect the server to the S3 storage via the zxsuite backup setBackupVolume S3 command, and then import the backup to restore your data.

Similarly to initialize back up on NFS or Fuse local storage, after you mounted the device on the file system, you can use the zxsuite backup setBackupVolume Local command if you have a new server with no backup configured or alternatively, use the zxsuite backup setBackupVolume Local command if you have already configured a backup.

To learn more about using these commands please refer to Zextras Suite Backup Documentation.

Technical writer at Zextras, an open-source and technology enthusiast who creates instructional and technical articles about Zextras and Zimbra.

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