Version History FAQ

What is a Version

When an individual file is changed, updated, edited, or deleted, without the filename changing, a new version is created. In this FAQ we will sometimes refer to updating, changing, deleting, or editing a file as “modifying” that file.

What Is Version History

Have you ever deleted a file by mistake? Or wanted a previous version of a file that you saved over? Backblaze backs up the data files that are currently on your computer and selected external hard drives. If a backed-up file is modified or deleted, Backblaze will keep a copy of the pre-modification or pre-deletion file for a period of time before removing it from your backup in our data center. This is known as Version History: If you delete a file by mistake, or save over a file by accident, you can recover the earlier versions, provided that you’re within the time period that we hold them for.

By default, Backblaze keeps a 30-day Version History of your files. After 30 days, the updated, changed, or deleted versions will be removed from your Backblaze backup, leaving only the most recent, current version of your files in your backup. 

Note: If you have data loss or computer failure, we highly recommend creating a restore immediately

If you are running Backblaze Version 7.0 or later, you can increase your backup’s Version History from 30 days to “1-Year” (365 days) or “Forever” on the Overview page of your Backblaze account. Increasing Version History to 1 year means that all versions of changed, updated, or deleted files will be available to restore for 1 year after they were changed, updated, or deleted. If you would like versions of your modified or deleted files to never be removed from your backup, you can increase Version History to “Forever.”

Version_History.jpg

Example of how 30 Day Version History Works: 

A file, zebra.jpg was added to your computer on 03/28/2019, and you have Version History set to 30 days. If you delete that file (zebra.jpg) on 04/01/2019, you will be able to recover that deleted file from your Backblaze backup through 05/01/2019, after which point it will be removed from your Backblaze backup, and will no longer be available for recovery. 

How Much Does Version History Cost

30 Days

Free. By default, Backblaze keeps a 30-day history of versions for files that have been backed up but have been updated, changed, or deleted from your computer or external drives.

1-Year

$2/month, $24/year, or $48/2-years, depending on your account’s license type. 

Forever 

$2/month, $24/year, or $48/2-years, depending on your account’s license type, plus $0.005/GB/Month for versions of files updated, changed, or deleted more than one year ago. The cost is calculated based on the size of those updated, changed, or deleted versions.

1-Year Version History

If you choose “1-Year,” all versions of your files that are backed up—whether you've updated, changed, or fully deleted them from your computer—will remain in your Backblaze backup for 1 year after being modified or deleted from your device. This will remain the case for as long as you have this option selected and your account is in good standing.

Increasing your Version History to “1-Year” is an additional $2/month/computer, which is charged based on your license type (monthly, 1-year, 2-year) and is prorated to match up with your backup licenses renewal date. 

Example 1: Deleted File with 1-Year Version History

A file, zebra.jpg was added to your computer on 03/28/2019. As long as zebra.jpg continues to be in its original state on your computer, and your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing, that file will be available for recovery. 

If you delete that file (zebra.jpg) on 04/01/2019, and have Version History set to 1 year, you will be able to recover that deleted file from your Backblaze backup through 04/01/2020, so long as your account remains in good standing.

Example 2: Changed File with 1-Year Version History

A file, zebra.jpg was added to your computer on 03/28/2019. As long as zebra.jpg continues to be on your computer, and your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing, that file will be available for recovery. 

If you edit zebra.jpg on 04/01/2019 and save the file again as zebra.jpg, you will still be able to recover the original zebra.jpg file from Backblaze until 04/01/2020, after which point it will be removed from your Backblaze backup. However, the edited version created on 04/01/2019 of zebra.jpg will be available to recover for as long as it remains on your computer and your account is in good standing. 

Forever Version History

The “Forever” setting of Version History is for users who wish to retain modified or deleted file versions beyond 1 year. Selecting forever requires that you pay the fixed fee for 1-Year Version History, and an additional $0.005/GB/Month for file versions that were updated, changed, or deleted longer than 1 year previous to the current date. If you choose Forever, any files that have been updated, changed, or deleted from your computer or external hard drives will remain in your Backblaze backup indefinitely while this option is selected and your account is in good standing.

*Billing Note*: The $0.005/GB/Month is continuously calculated based on the size of the files retained, but only charged upon renewal (for any outstanding balance) or if your accrued balance at the end of any month is at least $0.50

Example 1 - Deleted File with Forever Version History:

A file, zebra.jpg, which is 200MB in size, was added to your computer on 03/28/2019. As long as zebra.jpg continues to be on your computer, and your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing, that file will be available for recovery. 

If you delete zebra.jpg on 04/01/2019, you will still be able to recover that file from Backblaze forever (assuming your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing). However on 04/01/2020, the 200MB of space that the file took up, will begin accruing charges at a rate of $0.005/GB/Month. In the above case that single version will accrue $0.001/month, for as long as you have the Forever feature enabled. 

Example 2 - Changed File with Forever Version History:

A file, zebra.jpg, which is 200MB in size, was added to your computer on 03/28/2019. As long as zebra.jpg continues to be on your computer, and your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing, that file will be available for recovery. 

If you edit zebra.jpg on 04/01/2019 and save the file again as zebra.jpg (the new file is now 300MB), you will still be able to recover the original zebra.jpg file (200MB), along with the edited zebra.jpg file (300MB) forever (assuming your Backblaze account and backup are in good standing). However on 04/01/2020, the 200MB of space that the original file takes up will begin accruing charges at a rate of $0.005/GB/Month. In the above case it will accrue $0.001/month, for as long as you have the Forever feature enabled, since the new 300MB version of zebra.jpg remains on your computer, it does not accrue charges.

On 05/01/2020 you delete the 300MB zebra.jpg file. If Version History is set to Forever, then on 05/01/2021, both of the two zebra.jpg versions would account for $0.0025 towards your total bill each month.* 

*Billing Note*: The $0.005/GB/Month is continuously calculated based on the size of the files retained, but only charged upon renewal (for any outstanding balance) or if your accrued balance at the end of any month is at least $0.50

Changing Your Version History Setting

Increasing your Version History Setting 

You can change your Version History settings from 30 days to 1 year or forever at any time. Please note, however, that the increase in retention is only effective after the point when you enable the setting. Meaning, if you change your setting from 30 days to 1 year, files previously cleared from your backup after 30 days will NOT become available. Your existing 30-day Version History and any versions of files you update, change or delete going forward will now be retained in accordance with your new Version History settings.

Decreasing your Version History Setting 

You can decrease your Version History settings from forever to 1 year or 30 days at any time. Similarly, you can change your settings from 1 year to 30 days at any time.

*WARNING*: Decreasing your Version History immediately prevents you from recovering versions beyond the new Version History setting. 

Moving from 1 year to 30 days means that you will only be able to recover files modified or deleted over the previous 30 days. At your renewal date, the 1-Year Version History charge will not renew.

Moving from forever to 1 year means that you will only be able to recover files modified or deleted over the previous 1 year and you will be charged for any outstanding balance. Moving from forever to 30 days means that you will only be able to recover files modified or deleted over the previous 30 days and you will be charged for any outstanding balance for files modified or deleted over 1 year ago. 

Change_VH_Settings.jpgRecovering Former Versions

To recover older versions please create a restore. To go back in time, you can use the “To” dropdown in order to see previous versions of files. Changing the “To” field will show your backup status as of that date and time, and rolling back time allows you to find and download previous versions of your files.

Restore-Date-Picker.jpgRequirements

In order to take advantage of extended Version History you must be running Backblaze version 7.0 or later on the machine that you would like to extend the Version History for. 

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