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SQL Agent Jobs: Creating a Scheduled Database Backup Plan


Microsoft SQL Server (Any edition but Express)


RDP onto the server

Connect to the SQL server using SQL Server Management Studio. You need administrative access so use Windows credentials or the SA account

Expand the Management section

Right-click on Maintenance Plans and choose New Maintenance Plan

Choose a name, E.G. “Daily Backup

Double click on Subplan_1

  • Name: A simple name for the section of the plan (e.g. Backup)
  • Description: Provide some more detail explanation (e.g. Takes a daily backup and deletes the one created the previous day)
  • Click on the calendar icon next to the Schedule field. Change the frequency according to customer’s specifications

On the left-hand side there will be a toolbox containing call the available tasks

Add a Back Up Database Task. You can either double click it, or drag and drop it into the beige filed

A new item will appear in the design area

Double click on the Icon to set up the backup specifications

Specify the databases to back up. You can click on “All user databases“, or select specific ones using the “These Databases” option

Click OK

Select the Create a backup file for every database option

Check the box that says “Create a sub-directory for each database

Select a location for the backup files (Usually something along the lines of “C:\SQL Backups”)

Hit OK

You are done setting the backup part of the plan, now we need to make it remove the old files

Add a Maintenance Cleanup Task from the toolbox. Make sure to connect it by dragging the arrow from the backup task onto it

Double-click on the Icon for the new task

On the folder section, select the folder where you are backing up the files

For file extension, select *.*

Check the “Include first-level sub-folders” box

Choose the time frame for file deletion. If it’s a daily backup task, set the time to 20 hours, not 1 day, so we ensure the prior day’s backup is removed

Save the plan by clicking on the Save icon or hitting Ctrl + S and you’re done!

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