You can use the vCenter Server Appliance Management Interface to back up the vCenter Server instance. You can select whether to include historical data, such as stats, events, and tasks, in the backup file.

Note: The backup operation for a vCenter High Availability cluster, backs up only the active node.


  • You must have an FTP, FTPS, HTTP, HTTPS, or SCP server up and running with sufficient disk space to store the backup.
  • Dedicate a separate folder on your server for each file-based backup.


  1. In a Web browser, go to the vCenter Server Appliance Management Interface, https://appliance-IP-address-or-FQDN:5480.
  2. Log in as root.
  3. In the vCenter Server Appliance Management Interface, click Summary.
  4. Click Backup.
    The Backup Appliance wizard opens.
  5. Enter the backup protocol and location details.
    Option Description
    Backup protocol Select the protocol to use to connect to your backup server. You can select FTP, FTPS, HTTP, HTTPS, or SCP.

    For FTP, FTPS, HTTP, or HTTPS the path is relative to the home directory configured for the service. For SCP, the path is absolute to the remote systems root directory.

    Backup location Enter the server address and backup folder in which to store the backup files.
    Port Enter the default or custom port of the backup server.
    User name Enter a user name of a user with write privileges on the backup server.
    Password Enter the password of the user with write privileges on the backup server.
  6. (Optional) Select Encrypt Backup Data to encrypt your backup file and enter a password for the encryption.
    If you select to encrypt the backup data, you must use the encryption password for the restore procedure.
  7. Click Next.
  8. On the Select parts to backup page, review the data that is backed up by default.
  9. (Optional) Select Stats, Events, and Tasks to back up additional historical data from the database.
  10. (Optional) In the Description text box, enter a description of the backup and click Next.
  11. On the Ready to complete page, review the summary information for the backup and click Finish.
    The Backup Progress window opens and indicates the progress of the backup operation.
  12. After the backup process finishes, click OK to close the Backup Progress window.


You successfully created a backup file of the vCenter Server Appliance.

What to do next

If your file-based backup has failed, cancel the backup job.