1) Select a backup scheme: TOPS Software has developed a number of different backup schemes that you can choose from to make backing up your data as detailed as you want. If you do not like the predefined schemes, the system even allows you to create your own backup schemes.
2) Define files to backup: Since the backup program is fully integrated with TOPS Professional, the system makes it easy for you to define exactly what you want backed up. You may choose to only backup accounting files, for example. All you have to do is click a check-box next to the module sections that you want backed up.
3) Define communities to backup: TOPS Professional will display a full list of all of your communities. Simply check the communities that you want to back up, or click a button to check them all.
That’s it! Once you have performed these three simple steps, your backup program is activated and ready to use.
Once your account has been set up, you can log on to the administration site to access the TOPS Backup Service Administration Tools, which allows you to manage your backups (add communities, delete backups, increase space limits) and see the space your backups have used.
One of the most exciting things about the online administration tools is your ability to download a backup, which you can then restore to another computer. This is one of the primary reasons why an online backup solution is better than an offline solution.
The Scheduling Tools in the TOPS Backup Service allow you to set automatic backup schedules on the days and times that you want to back up your data. You can do it as little or as often as you like.
A simple utility runs in the Windows system tray, and automatically initiates a new backup at the regularly scheduled time.
Please Note: Your computer must be turned on and connected to the Internet and the data server containing TOPS data in order for backups to successfully be performed. We highly recommend that customers using slower Internet connections schedule backups during working hours, or restrict backups to manual instead of automated.
Based on the schedule that you set, your computer will connect to the Internet, compress the community files that will be backed up, and upload those compressed files to an offsite Internet server. Once per night, that server is automatically backed up to a server at TOPS corporate headquarters.
This process of redundant backups is the hidden jewel of the TOPS Backup Service. By storing your data on two different servers in two different locations, TOPS Software gives you the extra assurance that your data will be available to you when you need it most.
Each time you backup your community data, the TOPS Backup Service compresses your data to a smaller, more compact file size. This data compression is performed prior to the upload of your backup data, insuring that your backup data will be as small as possible. Data usually compress 20% to 40% of its original size.
Not only does this compression make backing up and restoring your data significantly faster, it also lowers the cost of your backup subscriptions. Since you pay for storage space used, the less space your data take up, the better. So, for example, an average community file taking up 10MB of disk space on your data server would compress to approximately 3MB.