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As a best practice, one should always set a Retention Policy that best suits their business needs. Data that meets its Retention Policy is automatically removed from the cloud, providing lower costs and easier quota management. 

However, a time may come when one wishes to delete data manually.

Symptoms

  • You want to delete data from the cloud for any reason.
  • This article applies to both ZCB with Amazon S3 and ZCB with Google Cloud Storage.

Customers using ZCB with Google Cloud Storage may sometimes need to delete data in order to stay under their quota. By default, quotas are only checked once per day. 

If you delete data to meet your quota, and wish to see immediate results, follow these steps:

  1. Delete data using any of the methods below.
  2. After you receive notice of successful deletion, log into the Zmanda Network
  3. Navigate to http://network.zmanda.com/cloudUsage.php
  4. Click the large REFRESH button in the Cloud Usage box.
  5. This will update your quota immediately.

What's going on?

Deleting data from the cloud is a multi-stage process:

  1. Tell ZCB which data you wish to remove.
  2. ZCB tells the cloud provider to perform the deletion.
  3. The cloud provider deletes the data and tells ZCB when the operation is completed.
    1. This step can take a long time, depending on the volume of data to be removed.
  4. ZCB tells you that the data has been deleted.

Resolution

There are many ways to remove data from the cloud:

Method 1: Deleting Data Via the Report Page

The easiest, fastest, and most reliable method of deletion is through the Report page of the ZCB user interface. 
  1. Navigate to the Report page
  2. Click on the backup run you wish to delete. You may select multiple backup runs by holding CTRL or SHIFT key while clicking.
  3. Right-click to bring up the action menu.
  4. Click "Delete Backup Run" to begin the deletion.
  5. A pop-up appears to confirm your decision. Note that deleted data cannot be recovered.
  6. ZCB will begin deleting your data. This operation requires communication with our cloud storage partners and can take a very long time, depending on the amount of data being removed. Please be patient.
  7. A message will pop up once the operation is complete.

Method 2: Change the Retention for Older Backup Runs

In most cases, backups will be automatically removed according to the Retention Policy. However, sometimes it is necessary to change the Retention Policy at a later date. Doing so will not affect older backups that have already been completed. Old backups must be changed manually on the Report page.

If the retention is changed to a shorter time, any newly expired backups will be purged within 24 hours.

  1. Navigate to the Report page
  2. Click on the backup run you wish to delete. You may select multiple backup runs by holding CTRL or SHIFT key while clicking.
  3. Right-click to bring up the action menu.
  4. Click "Change Retention" to open the Retention menu.
  5. Choose a new retention policy.
  6. If the new retention policy results in expired backups, the expired backups will be purged within 24 hours.
    1. By default, expired backups are purged at midnight every day.

Method 3: Purge All Backup Runs Before...

ZCB also provides a method to remove all backup runs before a specific date. This method is most useful when you wish to delete a large number of backup runs based on age. 
Be cautious when using this method. Remember that deleted data cannot be recovered.
  1. Click on "File -> Purge All Backup Runs Before..."
  2. A dialogue box will appear with several options.
    1. Choose a date. All data prior to that date will be deleted.
    2. Choose if you wish for data to be deleted from the cloud, from local disk, or from both.
    3. Choose if you want to delete data from the currently-selected backup set only or from all backup sets.
  3. A pop-up appears to confirm your decision.
  4. ZCB will begin deleting your data. This operation requires communication with our cloud storage partners and can take a very long time, depending on the amount of data being removed. Please be patient.
  5. A message will pop up once the operation is complete.

Method 4: Delete the Backup Set

When a backup set is deleted, you will be prompted if you wish to remove all data related to the backup set. If you choose "yes", then all data from the deleted backup set will be purged.

Like methods #1 and #3, the actual deletion can take a long time.

Method 5: Delete Data Via the Global Dashboard

This method is currently in beta for ZCB with Amazon S3 customers. If deletion fails, please retry or use one of the other options available on this page.

  1. Log into your dashboard at http://zgd.zmanda.com
  2. Select the backups you wish to delete by placing a checkmark in the box on the left.
  3. Click the Delete From Cloud button

Method 6: Remove Data Via the jets3t Tool

This method is only available to customers using ZCB with Amazon S3.

Please see How to Access ZCB Backup Images on S3 without ZCB Software for details on how to use the jets3t tool

If an error appears...

Please contact support via the Zmanda Network or by clicking Help -> Contact Support from within ZCB.

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