How do backups work with version 7?

Under Settings->Backup it says "Standalone vaults are backed up only if folder sync is enabled"

I want to make sure my vaults are backed up but i'm seeing this folder sync setting anywhere, where do I find it and what does it do?

Also is there any control on when the backups actually happen? Does 1Password perform a backup whenever it first loads?


1Password Version: Not Provided
Extension Version: Not Provided
OS Version: Not Provided
Sync Type: Not Provided


  • On a related note, I see that the Mac client backs up your subscription vaults locally... but I can't see any feature for this in the new Windows version... how do I backup my 1Password subscription in an offline way?

  • neil_jordanneil_jordan

    Team Member

    Hi @reck, thanks for writing in!

    The automatic backup feature is available for standalone vaults that are not synced through a 1Password membership, but rather via third-party services such as Dropbox. Backups are initiated when a change is made inside one of these vaults, triggering a sync, which is why syncing must be enabled.

    If you expand the Vault Menu on the sidebar and click the More Options menu next to one your vaults, you will see the option to enable/disable sync. Keep in mind that you'll only see this option on standalone vaults as syncing is automatic with 1Password memberships. Backups are taken once daily for the first 30 days, followed by monthly for the next 24 months. We do have plans to offer the flexibility to change this in the future.

    @wraith, we currently only offer a backup a solution for standalone vaults. Backup for subscription-based vaults will be coming to 1Password Windows in a future update.


  • MikeTMikeT Agile Samurai

    Team Member
    edited May 2018

    Just to expand on Neil's answer, 1Password for macOS backs up its internal database, not just 1Password accounts. You can replicate this by making a copy of the 1Password's data folder on Windows via %LOCALAPPDATA%\1Password\data. The Mac backups are not for restoring your 1Password accounts but for restoring the 1Password internal database. 1Password accounts are already backed up on our side.

    To be clear, all OPVaults that is used in 1Password 7 is being backed up whenever you make a change to it. Standalone vaults that are not syncing means that there's no external OPVault folder for it, it's just stored within the internal database. That's why we intentionally require you to choose a folder when you create a new vault.

    We have a project that's in progress to expand backups for everyone properly and we'll share more details on this in the future. We also plan to add a dedicated sync tab in Settings that shows which vault is syncing and not syncing.

  • Thanks for the answer.

    I use just local vaults on PC. Where do the backups get stored?


  • neil_jordanneil_jordan

    Team Member

    Hi @reck, backups are stored in the %LOCALAPPDATA%\1Password\backups folder on your PC. You can get to a backup's location quicker by selecting it in Settings > Backups and clicking 'Show Files'.

  • Thanks Neil. I've checked in that location and can see the backups so it looks like its working ok.

    Many thanks.

  • MikeTMikeT Agile Samurai

    Team Member

    On behalf of Neil, you're welcome.

    By the way, you can see the same list of backups in the Backups setting view, it's pulling the list of backups in that same directory.

  • Thanks that's useful to know.

    Are you planning to add the ability to choose where the backups are saved?

    Backups hidden away under %appdata% isn't the best place and it would make much more sense to be able to select an external hard drive or dropbox for instance to protect from hard drive failure.


  • I want to +100 this request. With 1Password 4 we were able to choose backup location which was in a Dropbox folder for me. Now it's stuck in some obscure %appdata% location on my C:\ drive frankly sucks. We frequently reimage our drives here and use D:\ for data and to having something as critical as 1PW backups on a disposable partition is unacceptable!

    Are there plans to allow the user choose where they want the backup? 1PW 7 is amazing, but this is a step back IMO.

  • brentybrenty

    Team Member
    edited May 2018

    @mia, @reck: Dropbox isn't a good bet to save you from hard drive failure or formatting. It will happily sync corrupt data. I have had that experience. Definitely don't rely on that as a backup.

    But we can consider making the backup location configurable in a future version. In the mean time, you can always automate copying the data to another location from there if you wish. But again, it's really better to just backup the whole system — which would of course include 1Password's local backups as well. Cheers! :)

  • I take your point re corrupt data but if the hard drive fails at least you have them saved on Dropbox (or OneDrive, ext HD etc) rather than losing them.

    Backing up to the same drive as the primary data just doesn't seem the best idea. Hopefully we'll see the configurable backup location from version 4 reinstated in version 7.

  • MikeTMikeT Agile Samurai

    Team Member
    edited May 2018

    Hi @reck,

    It would still remain a single point of failure, if the hard drive failure causes corruption to the data, it spreads to Dropbox and since Dropbox syncs the same copy of the backups to all computers it is connected to, you’d end up with zero usable backups. Luckily, Dropbox includes 30 day history, so you could figure out how to undo it but you’d have to check completely that all items are usable. We’ve actually seen this several times in the past because people misunderstood how Dropbox worked and not supposed to sync their backups folder to all computers. Dropbox or any cloud sync services are not backup services and should not be treated as such.

    That’s why it is always recommended to have unique copy of backups on each computer first and copied to remote drives as well as using separate sync folders for the backups. The best backup plan is two separate copies and one off-site. It is one of the reasons we came up with in the first place, to avoid that complexity.

    We will most likely add a big warning that backups should not be synced to the same location on all computers when we do add the option to change where the backups are stored.

    For the moment, you can use any backup tool you’re using to back up your computer to backup 1Password backup folder. We plan to implement an option to change your backup folder in a future update.

  • miamia
    edited May 2018

    I was going to respond to brenty's post, but see MikeT has made my point for me. Doing local backups really isn't the solution here. I do monthly backups but Dropbox ensures I have an extra cloud-based solution.

    One of the main concerns for me is fire. If I am out of town and my computer burns to a crisp in a fire, Dropbox keeps my files on the cloud. For something like 1PW ,recovering previous data is near impossible (to keep track of those passwords!)

    Hard drive corruption doesn't necessarily mean that the corruption will spread to Dropbox. I agree with you that Dropbox isn't a bulletproof solution, but it's a lot better than trusting some local hard drive and for that matter partition (since 1Password forces you to stay in the C:\ drive).

    With that said, I am glad this is a future feature. I guess I don't need to bother asking for a relative timeframe (year? 2 years?)

  • MikeTMikeT Agile Samurai

    Team Member

    We're hoping sooner than that, backups are important to us and at the same time, we're continuing to work on the rest of the standalone vault implementation, such as finishing up the custom icon support, improving the support for copying/moving attachments between vaults that's not yet supported.

    It'll get better soon.

  • Is there any update on the availability of specifying the backup location?

    I would like to be able to store the backups on my NAS drive (as I could do with v4).

  • brentybrenty

    Team Member

    We don't have anything to announce regarding changes to how backups work at this time. Anything like that would be in the release notes. We still recommend backing up everything regularly, but you can also copy 1Password's backup archives to any storage accessible to your machine. There are plenty of tools to do that.

    ref: OPW-2330

  • Does the "enable Sync" option do anything else besides enabling local backups? If not, why isn't it called "enable Local Backups"?

  • MikeTMikeT Agile Samurai

    Team Member

    Hi @codasalt,

    It exports the standalone vault to an external folder on your disk, enabling what we call Folder Sync, so you can put the external OPvault folder in Dropbox (or any other sync'ing service) and it'll sync to other computers.

    By default, we require you to choose a folder when you create a new vault, this automatically enables Folder Sync + Backups as well. Same thing when you open an existing vault, it's already an external OPVault folder. If you disable the sync, then there's no external folder to backup.

    We're planning to improve the Backup feature to automatically export the standalone vaults to back it up if it is not Folder Sync-enabled.

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