Why do server and website backups fail sometimes?

In this little piece I am going to highlight some of the reasons of why backups may fail.

While many of the reasons below are common and apply to a wide range of different backup methods, I am specifically assuming you are using a backup service like SimpleBackups.io to back up your servers and databases.

  • Not enough disk space
  • Server runs out of memory
  • Server has been placed behind a firewall and cannot be accessed
  • The backup is taking too long to be created and eventually times out
  • Trying to back up a non-existent directory or one that has been deleted
  • Trying to back up a directory which you don’t have permissions to read
  • Invalid/changed server credentials (host, port, username, ssh key, or password)
  • A problem uploading backup to remote storage
  • Invalid/changed storage credentials (key, secret, region, or bucket)
  • Trying to back up an empty database
  • Invalid/changed database credentials (db host, db port, db username, db password, or db name)


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