How do I set up 1Password to daily or hourly back up to my iCloud?

How do I set up 1Password to daily or hourly back up to my iCloud?

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Referrer: forum-search:How do I insure that 1Password is backing up to iCloud?


  • LarsLars Junior Member

    Team Member

    Hi @SargeUSMC -- there are a few aspects to your question. First of all, are you using a 1Password account, or do you have local 1Password vaults? If it's the former, your data are backed up on our servers (though not iCloud) regularly and redundantly. If it's the latter, are you using any of our 3rd party sync methods like Dropbox or iCloud?

    If you're using local vaults, then 1Password makes daily backups automatically. You can find these by going to Preferences > Backup and clicking "Show Files." This is the location on your hard drive that 1Password stores up to 50 backups of your 1Password data, chronologically. We always recommend people have more than one location for backups, however. 1Password's backups are great if something goes wrong in 1Password and you need to restore from a recent backup. But what if your entire hard drive dies? The backups in 1Password are on the same drive as your current 1Password data, so a dead drive means no access to either one. It's a good idea to make external backups, whether via Time Machine or using a tool like Carbon Copy Cloner or SuperDuper!

    Even that might not be enough for some people, however. What if your house is burned down or destroyed in a hurricane or flood? Then even external-drive backups would be destroyed at the same time your regular computer was damaged/destroyed. For such possibilities, many users also employ an offsite-backup strategy such as Crashplan or Backblaze. There are many such options available, and it's beyond the scope of this forum to recommend one, but you get the idea. How redundant you are with your backup strategy depends on your risk tolerance and willingness to keep such things up to date.

    In no case, however, does 1Password (or your Mac) simply back up your 1Password data to iCloud. There is data in CloudKit (the partner technology to iCloud Drive) if you've chosen in 1Password to sync (not back up) your data via iCloud, but there is no explicit backup available. May I ask: what are you trying to achieve, ultimately?

  • I have one 1Password Account. I want to achieve exactly what you describe as the issue a safe place for a back up of the backup i.e. iCloud

  • brentybrenty

    Team Member

    @SargeUSMC: iCloud is not a backup (with the exception of iOS device backups). That's what Time Machine and cloud backup services are for. It also isn't designed for this purpose. But with a account, all of your 1Password data there is automatically backed up offsite, encrypted on the server, so that you can recover data from there as needed, and even restore items to earlier versions if you make a mistake. I hope this helps. Be sure to let me know if you have any other questions! :)

  • SargeUSMCSargeUSMC
    edited October 2017

    I work in an apple environment which is iOS. So based on your answer I automatically back up all my data to iCloud. iTunes, Documents, Applications, photos etc. etc.

    Is this NOT correct? Isn't that what you said above?

  • brentybrenty

    Team Member

    I work in an apple environment which is iOS. So based on your answer I automatically back up all my data to iCloud. iTunes, Documents, Applications, photos etc. etc. Is this NOT correct? Isn't that what you said above?

    @SargeUSMC: No. iCloud and Dropbox are sync services and not really a backup. Think of it this way: If you delete something from your computer normally, a backup you've saved is unaffected. But if you delete something from your computer which is sync'd with iCloud, that same data is deleted from iCloud — so there's no backup to restore from in that case. Sync is destructive when you make changes, whereas a backup remains available to restore from.

    Sorry to be pedantic about this, but I've lost data in the past and the last thing I want is for that to happen to anyone else. How often have you deleted something and then later realized you needed it, or that you'd done so by mistake? Maybe you haven't, but I sure have, and others do too. So I think it's important to make a distinction between backup and sync. Better safe than sorry!

    However, there is one exception to this. Since "iCloud" encompasses a TON of different software and services, there's also iCloud device backups. Certainly this is a true backup of everything on your device, and unaffected by sync. However, restoring from a device backup is a VERY time-consuming process, and, in my experience (both personally and with other users), not always reliable. If I had a dollar for every instance where a restore did not include all apps and data, I'd have a lot more hair and enough money to pay for a good stylist, at the very least.

    I joke a bit about this because it's painful to think about, but it's a very serious problem. I can't go back and recover data I've lost for which I had no backup, so my defense mechanism is to 1) try to be lighthearted about it since the past cannot be changed, and 2) make sure I have a backup of my data to restore from if I lose everything due to damage, theft, or disaster.

    If you don't a account, be sure to backup your data regularly. We've even included backup/restore features in 1Password itself to help with this since we all keep our most important stuff there. I hope this helps!

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