# Common Questions
# What is backup "retention"?
The backup retention is the number of backups you want to keep available. Check the retention section for more.
# What are Incremental Backups?
Back up the files that change, only.
It is possible to make an incremental file backup where SimpleBackups only backs up the changed files over time.
- Create a regular file backup (opens new window)
- Add the file paths you want to back up.
- Tick the "Incremental Backup" option
The first backup run will include all files and folders. The subsequent runs will only include the changed files. Each backup run outputs one compressed tar file with changed files and is uploaded immediately to your preferred cloud storage.
We suggest pairing the incremental backups job with another regular weekly file backup for maximum protection.
Restoring an incremental backup is easy! SimpleBackups provides you with a single command that you can run on your server which automatically:
- Download all backup increments and decrypt them on the fly
- Stitches all increments together for you
- Restore them under the path you choose
Note: You can restore the whole backup, or restore up to a single point-in-time (up to a particular backup log increment).
# How long does it take to schedule a backup?
Assuming you have your server and database credentials available, we have seen it take less than 2 minutes to install SimpleBackups and run the first backup!
# Which databases are supported?
- MySQL / MariaDB
# Is SimpleBackups secure?
Absolutely! We take security very seriously due to the nature of what we do and encrypt all your sensitive information using industry-tested standards.
We even inform you (by displaying a lock icon) about which fields are encrypted in our database when you create a server, a backup or a storage.
These encrypted fields are only decrypted when you log in to your account or on-the-fly at runtime when SimpleBackups takes a backup for you.
# How does backup encryption work?
When you choose an encryption key for your file and database backups, the resulting backup will be encrypted via AES-256 and can only be decrypted using the same key you used.
Behind the scenes, openssl is used take care of the encryption for you. This works best when backups are also streamed ("Backup Streaming" is enabled) since it will happen on the fly and the backup output will not even exist unencrypted at any point in time during backup states transition.
# What is SimpleStorage?
Our own storage solution, also called SimpleStorage, is a dedicated AWS S3 or equivalent storage for your account.
You can choose to store your backups on SimpleStorage storage without having to provide your own storage depending on your plan.
# How does it work?
Just login to your account and go to https://my.simplebackups.com/storage (opens new window) then activate your included SimpleStorage.
# Which operating systems does SimpleBackups support?
SimpleBackups supports Linux servers and almost every distribution including:
- Amazon Linux
- Red Hat
- and more...