Disclaimer: Database maintenance tasks are outside of the scope of support. The following information is provided as-is and not warrantied.

What does this mean?

Your Counterpoint data is stored almost entirely in your SQL Server database. Items, prices, customers, sales history, and configuration settings are all stored in your database. If this data has not been saved into a backup file, you are at risk of losing your information. A simple hard drive problem could easily corrupt your entire database. If you have no backup, your organization may have to start from scratch - resulting in wasted time, lost business intelligence, and billable support time.

Why is this important?

Everyone knows the importance of backups. Lost data can result in the loss of invaluable information. But simply copying your database file is not enough. It is important that your database is backed up the right way. SQL Server provides a method for performing data backups. In general, simply imaging your server, creating copies of files, etc. is NOT sufficient to back up your SQL Server database.

How are problems identified? (Warning: Technical information)

The DB Health Check uses the backupset table in msdb to look for the most recent complete backup of your CounterPoint database. Note that we do not check your existing backup plans - only the backup history.

If you have been 4 or more days since your last backup, this is considered a problem. This allows for a few days without a backup before we consider your status a problem. Anything over 14 days is considered a major problem.

How do I fix this?

Typically, we recommend that databases be backed up at nightly. A database that is backed up nightly should not have any results for the BACKUP check during the DB Health Check. (Some may prefer to only do differential backups nightly. This is acceptable as well.)

The process of backing up your database is fairly resource intensive, so we recommend that it be run during off hours. Depending on the size of your database, the hardware available to your server, and the amount of time since indexes were last built, the process may take anywhere from a few seconds to a few hours. For an average Counterpoint DB (5-20 GB), plan on a weekly backup taking around 30 minutes.

There are numerous ways that a backup can be performed. The method that is best for each organization may vary. Note that since this responsibility is outside of the scope of your support agreement, we will not be able to assist you in setting up, configuring, or maintaining this task. 

Additionally, we recommend that backups periodically be moved both to a different server or drive and occasionally to an offsite system. Backing up your database will protect you from a corrupt database file, but if the backup is on the same drive as the database file, a failed hard drive could result in the loss of both the database and it's backup.

For a more thorough backup process, consult an IT professional.