Backup Help File

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This is the Help "file" for the Python Application whose main page is: Python Backup Program

Help file for backup application.

Application Features[edit]

  • Highly configurable.
  • Only copies new and updated files.
  • Produces detailed and summary logs so you can know just what it did.
  • Once set up runs an update with a couple of clicks.
  • Recurse down a directory structure ( how far is configurable ).
  • Can select files with "file filters" For example only *.png and *.gif files.
  • GUI shows activity.
  • Can pause and resume.
  • Can set to throttle the backup so it does not degrade computer performance.
  • Directory structure, file names, file format preserved in backup.
  • Backup files may be inspected without need for a restore.
  • Can be set to simulate mode where you can see ( via the log files ) what would have been copied.

Download and Install[edit]

There is really no install program. Currently the application is intended for those who have at least a little familiarity with Python coding and can just insert the downloaded code into their development environment and run it. Code not yet available.

How To:...[edit]


This is how I use the program, you could use it differently:

Put a short Python script in a directory. When this is double clicked start the GUI for the backup program set up to backup the directory to another directory either on the current disk or another disk.


  • Setup for backup of a directory. See section below.
  • Edit the parameter file: Use your development environment for Python or a text editor to edit See also: The section below, Configuration Files For Python. Normally I have a button on the GUI for this, but this function does not seem so useful for this application
  • Install: see section above.
  • Debug: see section below.
  • Quick Restart of the application: Not in this app, just shutdown and restart.
  • Use your preferred text editor. In the parameter file, see below.

Setup for Backup[edit]

There are several different way to use the program, varying in part on how much you setup in and how you structure your backups. I generally set it up with a small program in the directory that I wish to backup, then to run the backup I go to that directory ( with a file manager ) and double click the file. This is what I will describe here. There are a lot of small variations you can make to how you run it and locate the files, you can probably figure many of these out yourself.

Manually Configure the Backup[edit]

  • Copy the file from your download of the program and drop it in the source directory. Lets say the name of this is ....../my_important_files.
  • Set up a backup location somewhere on your computer or network. It should be named ......./my_important_files. You need to set up this directory manually because the backup program checks this name to make sure you do not backup to the wrong location by mistake. Of course once this is setup it is done for good for that directory and backup configuration.
  • The application comes with some sample files to be backed up and a backup location for them.
  • For the rest of the setup read the file ( or your copy of it ) and then run it.
  • Look at the display in the GUI for the setting the program is using, and if Ok then run the backup. See: Backup GUI for more info on the GUI
  • After it has run take a look at the log files ( you can do this from the GUI once you configure for your text editor of choice.
  • will run pretty much the same no matter where it is located on you disk, except you may find the python log file left in the directory with

Minimally Configure the Backup[edit]

  • Edit to default:
    • default_name = {default name for the backup}
    • log_detail_fn = {file name for the detailed log}
    • log_summary_fn = {file name for the summary log}
  • Now look at the file for more documentation, pretty much all you have to set is the source and destination.
  • Program runs like, see above.

No Configruation of Backup[edit]

In this mode the the location of the file determines the source directory and computes a destination. In my setup many files come from my D: drive and go to a network location rooted at I:\Data. So I use a method in the file to compute the destination......

Code in and the shipped as parameters.set_source_here() look at these files.

How to Use the Parameter File[edit]

See: Configuration Files For Python

Editing of the file

    • See above in Download and Install
  • Enable your favorite editor to work with the application.
    • self.ex_editor = r"D:\apps\Notepad++\notepad++.exe" # use r" or the backslashes will not work, or you can use forward slashes instead they may be wrong but they work.
  • Lots of other settings:
    • Read the comments in and change as desired. If a setting does not work let me know.
  • If you mess up.
    • Re download and get back to the original parameter file.

The GUI[edit]

see: Backup GUI Images


There are several application outputs that may be useful for debugging.

  • Watch the GUI
  • Check the Python console.
  • Look at the python log file ( use the GUI button <Edit Log> ( specify your editor in first ) or use your editor on the default name of the log file ...\backup\backup.py_log.

Most issues will probably be missing libraries, issues, or just bugs in my code (email me ).

If you are dropping you backup scripts around your disks and double clicking them you may need to tweak your path so python.exe or pythonw.exe is on your path.


  • Click on category page for this project ( Python Backup ) below.
  • Click on What links here on the left of this page