How to manually back up an Amazon Workspace?

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I'd like to manually back up an Amazon Workspace. I want to manually trigger a backup, try some experiment (like installing a new program), and then if the experiment fails, restore from the backup I just made. I know that Workspaces are automatically backed up at 12 hour intervals, but a 12 hour interval is way too long. If I have to revert, I could lose 12 hours worth of work! Is there any way to manually trigger a backup?

asked 2 years ago3026 views
2 Answers
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There is no way to trigger a manual backup of the WorkSpaces data drive. Additionally, WorkSpaces only backup the user drive (D drive) for a WorkSpace. The OS Drive (C: drive) is not backed up during a backup job so any programs installed will not be restored during a WorkSpaces rebuild.

Please see Mayank_J's response below for documentation regarding the restore / rebuild process

profile pictureAWS
answered 2 years ago
  • The Workspaces service does backup both root (C:) and user (D:) volumes in form of snapshot every 12 hours. But depending on whether you rebuild a Workspace[1] or restore a workspace[2] it would differ how those snapshots are used.

    [1] https://docs.aws.amazon.com/workspaces/latest/adminguide/rebuild-workspace.html [2] https://docs.aws.amazon.com/workspaces/latest/adminguide/restore-workspace.html

  • This is absurd. I need the ability to manually backup Workspaces builds in progress; Workspaces from which our images are created, and need backup before and after major updates/installs. If said install breaks the workspace I am building for image-creation, then I get to start completely from scratch because AWS is blocking user's access to manually use a built-in function of AWS, workspace-backup.

    Not allowing the manual backup of individual workspaces is utterly inexcusable, in my sincere opinion. There is no excuse for such penny-pinching restrictions being placed on paying customers.

  • You can take manual backup of the data using any 3rd party tools but you can't rebuild or restore Workspaces using that backup. You can only restore the data from that backup. Workspaces restore and rebuild functionality will always use the snapshots taken by the service.

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There needs to be better control of backups. A 12 hour snapshot is great for recovering from a major disaster, but how do we support users migrating between Workspaces (for example if they need to change to a GPU accelerated instance) or when a newer operating system is available?

It would be helpful if there was a way to backup the home drive to an external service/S3 so that such a migration could occur. It would also make it easier to perform restore of individual files rather than the entire system.

answered 7 months ago

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