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Automatic Backups

Ace Payroll automatic backups are made

  • Immediately prior to filing a regular payroll.
  • After an upgrade is installed that changes the version number.
  • Prior to restoring a previous backup.

File Types and Naming

  • A single industry compatible zip file is created, using maximum compression.
  • The file suffix is always AZB.
  • The file is located in the same path as the payroll data files.
  • Four auto backups are retained on disk.
  • The file name is always 8 characters, with the last 3 characters indicating the order in which the backups were made. In other words, the file name is ?????xxx.AZB, where xxx represents the sequence.
  • The sequence goes from 001 to 999, then cycles back to 001.
  • When a new file is created, all *.AZB files are scanned, and all apart from the 3 most recent, based on the sequence number, are deleted.
  • Note we do not use the file date time to work out which are the oldest backup files. Accordingly we isolate ourselves from system clock errors.

Creating Auto Backups

When Filing A Regular Payroll

  • The automatic backup is made after the last confirmation dialog, and before any data is changed by the filing process.
  • The first character of the file name is a letter indicating the pay frequency - W,F,M,L.
  • Characters 2..5 represent the day and month of the period end.
  • In other words, the file name F1108006.AZB represents the backup made when filing the regular fortnightly pays for the period ending 11th August.
  • Prior to making the backup when filing a regular payroll, the names of existing auto backups are checked. If the first 5 characters are the same, another backup is not made. In other words, if a client files the regular pay, then changes the pay date back and files the payroll again, another backup is not made.

When Installing An Upgrade

  • Auto upgrades are created by the newly installed version, not the version being replaced.
  • An auto backup is created if any part of the version number is different. They are not just made for major file upgrades 3.34 to 3.35 etc, but are also made for minor upgrades - 3.35A to 3.35C etc.
  • The first 5 characters of the file name are 'U' followed by the new version number. A 3.35B upgrade produces the file U335Bxxx.AZB.
  • An auto backup is not created if when scanning the already existing auto backup files, an auto backup is located that was created either from a previous upgrade, or restoring a previous backup.
  • This means that if a client repeatedly installs the same upgrade, only a single auto backup is made, leaving the remaining three auto backups intact.

When Restoring A Backup

  • An auto backup is created immediately prior to restoring backup data through the standard user interface. An auto backup is not created when restoring a previous auto backup.
  • An auto backup is not created if when scanning the already existing auto backup files, an auto backup is located that was created either from a previous upgrade, or restoring a previous backup.
  • This means that if a client repeatedly restore a previous backup, only a single auto backup is made, leaving the remaining three auto backups intact.
  • The file is named RBACKxxx.AZB.

Restoring Auto Backups

  • Auto backups are restored from the diagnostic utilities menu.

Zip Backups - handling of non Ace Payroll *.DTA files

  • When backing up individual files, Ace Payroll copies all required files based on their exact file name.
  • When creating zip backups, as opposed to backing up individual files, Ace Payroll creates an archive of all *.DTA files.
  • This means that any *.DTA files that are not related to Ace Payroll are included in the zip archive.
  • Prior to restoring a backup, Ace Payroll deletes all relevant files based on their exact file name. If there is an *.DTA file that is not an Ace Payroll file, then the file is not deleted.
  • When a zip archive is restored, it only replaces any files that do not exist. This is fine, because the required files have been deleted in the step above.
  • The zip restore does not overwrite any existing files. If a client has an *.DTA file of their own, it will be restored from the zip file if it does not already exist. It will not be overwritten if it does exist.

More on Backup and Restore

Internet Backup
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To Memory Stick
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Running Ace Payroll From A Memory Stick
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Backup Miscellaneous
Multiple frequencies, timing of backup, and backing up to your own server more..
Direct Credit Emergency Backup
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Automatic Backups
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Alphabetical Index
The Ace Payroll alphabetical index provides links to all documentation more..
Ace Payroll FAQ Contents
All the most common Ace Payroll questions grouped by categories in a short table of key words more..
Ace Payroll Frequently Asked Questions
All the most common questions we are asked at Ace Payroll listed in a question format and grouped by category more..