Encryption - Do I Have to Start with a Full Backup


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Ken
Ken
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So I've decided I need to start  using encryption on my backups. ( on a NAS and internals )

I know I go into advance options and set a password.

My question is can I do that at any point in the retention cycle or should I set password and run a full backup for that definition.

In other words if I did a full two weeks ago on my data and I'm now running incrementals and differentials is it okay to set a password now without running a full?

Any other gotchas I should be on the look out for?  ( I use a password manager and it will be updated accordingly.)

As always. I appreciate any and all help.
Edited 31 October 2023 4:08 PM by Ken
dbminter
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I've never added/removed or changed a password in the midstream of an image backup set.  I'm not sure, but I thought I had read somewhere on the forum that a new Full is created when you change password settings.  But, don't necessarily quote me on that.


What I would do is a small scale test.  Say, backup your Windows partition to a temporary backup and save the XML as a temporary file.  Perform a Full without a password and then edit the XML to add encryption.  Then, try an Incremental or a Differential and see if Reflect honors that choice or does a new Full.

Edited 31 October 2023 9:00 PM by dbminter
Seekforever
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I don't use encryption on a broad scale, I only encrypt my "sensitive" files however, I applaud anybody who is dealing with sensitive information, especially pertaining to other people's information or corporate sensitivities.
My take (speculative guess, in other words) on this is that if you do encrypt incrementals or differentials it likely will not go back and encrypt earlier ones or the full leaving them plain. Personally, I'd just take the safe approach and start with a new encrypted full regardless. 
jphughan
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Changes to encryption settings, including changing the password, will require a new Full, which Reflect will create even if you request a Diff/Inc to continue in an existing set. That’s a relatively new change, requested by yours truly.

The previous behavior was that the set’s settings would persist for all backups in the set. So if you updated the definition file and continued making Diff/Inc backups, those new settings would be ignored in favor of the pre-existing settings for that set, until you manually created a new Full that would then use the current settings of the definition file. (The exception was merely changing the password, which caused subsequent Diff/Inc backups to fail completely because the new password would unusable for decrypting the existing backups, which made it impossible to append to that set.) Additionally, back then the log showed the current settings in the definition file, even though those weren't necessarily the settings actually used for that backup in this scenario.

The overarching principle is that encryption settings, along with some others, are held constant for all backups in a set. The only difference is how settings changes are handled.
Edited 31 October 2023 11:06 PM by jphughan
Ken
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Thank you gentlemen.

So some additional guidance please. My understanding is a full will be done. Got it. 

I do a backup of my data drive, around 300GB. If I set to to encrypt I understand it will do a full. Now my regular full is due this weekend. I really don't want to run this twice and it will prematurely delete one of my older sets, normally I only run full once a month. Having two run in the span of week will cause the retention rule to engage.

Ideas? (Don't really want to increase retention set)
jphughan
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Change encryption settings between the last non-Full backup and the first Full you want to have encryption. Or run a manual Full and then edit your Full schedule to have a “Start on” date of the next time you want a scheduled Full.
Edited 1 November 2023 9:56 PM by jphughan
Ken
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Thanks. I'll go with enabling encryption just before the full. 

I just changed by system backup to encryption, about 10 minutes before the incremental was to start. It ran and as expected it ran a full.


Friday evening I changed the settings on my data backup to include a password. Getting there. 


Thanks again for the help.


Edited 4 November 2023 11:45 AM by Ken
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