The Backup Selections tab is where one specifies which files and folders to backup and which to exclude. The screen capture below shows a typical view of this tab.
At the top of the window one can select which day one is making selections for. Most users use the same backup selections every day, which is the default 'Everyday', however there are times when one only wants to backup certain files on certain days (for example a large database or Microsoft Exchange might only be backed up on weekends).
The backup client can end up using multiple selection sets for any given day, though when you select a day/set in the user interface you are editing only that set. So, as an example, if the day the backup has been launched on is a Saturday, then in the user interface you will be editing just those selections unique to that day, but the engine will do the following
- If selections have been specified for 'Saturday', then those selections will be used.
- If there are selections for 'Weekend', then those selections will be used as well.
- If there are selections for 'Everyday' then those selections will be used as well.
The left pane of the Selections tab is used to select Volumes (disks), Network shares, and as will be shown below plugins for VSS System Components (such as Microsoft Exchange and Microsoft SQL Server).
The right window pane has three areas, the top shows the current path of what is shown in the center left table, and one can use either the up-arrow or pull-down menu to navigate up as shown below.
The center right pane contains a table showing the contents (files and folders) of the selected folder. In the example below there are several folders (directories) shown, these are shown with Type '(dir)' and have a trailing backslash '\' after their name. For files, their Size is indicated and their Type corresponds to then '.' ending of the file.
In the above screen capture you can see that the file 'pagefile.sys' is excluded (as indicated by the red X) and in fact its entire entry is in grey meaning it's been excluded using a filter so you can't change its selection/exclusion state. The folder named 'share\' has a grey tick mark meaning that some file(s) or folder(s) within it are selected, but the folder 'share\' is not itself selected to backup. Similarly the folder named 'test#123\' is selected with a green check which means the folder itself is selected.
One can select, exclude or deselect (remove any selection) a file or folder by clicking on the square tick box to the left of file/folder. If you prefer, you can select a row in the table and use the radio buttons at the bottom right of the window to do the same:
In the above screen capture you'll see a tick box called "Apply to subfolders" so that, when you are selecting or excluding a folder, you can specify whether this applies to subfolders within the folder. Also please note the pull-down menu in the screen capture above. Since it is possible for there to be multiple selections which apply to a file or folder, this pull-down menu has been created so that you can visualize which selections apply to the selected row in the table.
The selection state of multiple files and folders can be changed by multi-selecting them and then right-clicking to bring up a menu as shown below.
If you are running the scheduling service as "LocalSystem" you will see a popup message like the following when you try to browse the Network tree (you can read more about service users and permissions by clicking here).
If the scheduling service is running as a user with network privileges, the you may browse the Network for shares as follows:
You will also see "VSS System Components" underneath "Computer". This is the area where you can view and select system components such as Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft SQL Server, and System State.
Double-clicking on a VSS System Component will display the files associated with that component. For example, the "SqlServerWriter" backups up the following files.
Detailed information on VSS System Components can be found here.
Expert users may wish to manually edit the actual Selections File, instead of interactively making selections. When launched in expert mode, a tab called Backup->Text Selections will be present allowing one to edit the selections file using a text editor (or one may edit the Unicode .SEL text file using a simple editor such as notepad.exe). Additional information on the syntax of selection files can be found here.