4⃣

Administrator Guide

This section describes the functions performed by a SmartBackup administrator. As a SmartBackup admin, you are responsible for managing user backups. You are also responsible for setting up schedules that determine when Backups, Archives or Exports are run.

Overview

SmartBackup includes the following key functional areas:
  • A - Your Smartsheet area; including Home, Workspaces and folders. Smartsheet info
  • B - Your designated Backup Vault Area
  • C - Your designated Archive storage area
  • D - Your designated Export storage area
  1. 1.
    Backup Obtain a list of all your worksheets in A, it decides what to backup based on what was recently modified and create a copy of those in B the Vault
  2. 2.
    Restore Any time you can restore a backup copy from the vault by copying it back to your primary A Smartsheet area.
  3. 3.
    Archive Optionally a process can be run which takes least recently used Sheets from B and manifest it as XLSX sheets in designated C area, typically this will be a local filestore.
  4. 4.
    Recall At any time you can recall a archive copy by importing it back into your primary Smartsheet area A
  5. 5.
    Export At any time you can run the Export component that will export one or more sheets
  6. 6.
    Archive To re-instate an exported copy

Making sense of the different operations:

Backup
Archive
Export
Create an exact copy from source. Because it is maintained within Smartsheet it preserves all settings and formats. A Workspace within Smartsheet are designated as the Vault containing sets of folders each with the backup copies. It should be noted that the user does not need to specify which sheets to backup, it is automatically determined based on date last modified.
Create an Excel based copy of the Vaulted backup to a filestore drive. Due to Smartsheet restrictions some information are lost like formats, links and formulas. Optionally, user can decide to delete the Vaulted copy during archiving.
Create a snapshot copy from source to a filestore drive. Ideal to create versions or deal with in-moment events. It lands as a zipped document, containing folder structures with the sheets as XLSX copy with attachments. Packing sheets are automatically generated to provide as much information as possible for you to successfully re-import the sheet. User need to indicate which sheets to export.
when can it be run?
Backups, Archives or Exports can be run instantly, on-demand or based on a regular schedule. Obviously your specific environment will dictate your ideal backup arrangement.
When
Typical Actions
Instantly
Click on Run Now in Console UI or click on the relevant .exe from Windows Explorer
On-demand
Anytime you can Click on Run Now in Console UI or click on the relevant .exe from Windows Explorer
Schedule
Create a Schedule using Windows Task Scheduler. Typically this would define a cycle, like daily at 5 or every Wednesday or after a specific event. Task Scheduler can be invoked from the Console UI

Checklist

Before any process can run properly, you should:
  1. 1.
    Obtain SmartBackup and install it, see Installation Guide
  2. 2.
    Obtain a license if you are not using the Free version, see Licenses
  3. 3.
    Configure your Backup Tenants file, see Setup and Configuration Setup Guide
  4. 4.
    Setup your designated Vault area for Backups, see Setup Guide and the auto provision thereof in Enterprise Edition

Managing Licenses

You must license SmartBackup in order to use it, unless you are using the free Starter Edition. AcuWorkflow provision your license automatically after successful purchase/subscription. For renewal refer to Support Guide.
Tip
You can see your License status when running Backup, Archive or Export in the cmdline window

Obtaining API Token

This section describes generating an API access token for the integration of Smartsheet into SmartBackup.
Though the process for generating User API Tokens and sysAdminAPI Tokens are similar, the latter requires you to have Smartsheet Admin rights.
  1. 1.
    Generate a User API Token for Starter and Business Edition
  2. 2.
    Generate a sysAdmin API Token for Enterprise Edition

User API Token

To generate or re-generate a User API Token follow these steps:
  1. 1.
    Log into Smartsheet, then click on Account button, usually bottom left
  2. 2.
    Next click on “APPS and Integrations" which will display the Personal Settings Form.
  3. 3.
    Click "API Access" which will allow you to Manage your API Tokens.
  4. 4.
    Click "Generate new access token" which will provide you with the User API Token.
Once generated you can now copy/paste the generated User API Token for a Tenant. See Starter or Business Edition configuration. For multiple Users (let us say you want to run the Team Business Edition Version) each User will have to perform this process in order to obtain their respective User API Token.

SysAdmin API Token

To generate or re-generate a SysAdmin API Token follow these steps:
  1. 1.
    Log into Smartsheet with an account that has Smartsheet Admin rights, then click on Profile button, usually bottom left.
  2. 2.
    Confirm that you can see the “Admin” section at the top of the list. This will indicate that you have sysadmin rights.
  3. 3.
    Next click on “APPS and Integrations" which will display the Personal Settings Form.
  1. 1.
    Click "API Access" which will allow you to Manage your API Tokens.
  2. 2.
    Click "Generate new access token" which will provide you with the SysAdmin API Token
Now that you have the SysAdmin token, you can copy it and paste it into the sysAdminToken field in the Members screen in SmartBackup for the Account. See Enterprise Edition

Bypass Proxy Server

Should you deploy SmartBackup in an environment where cloud API calls is controlled with a Proxy server like Forcepoint, you must create rules on the Proxy Server to bypass the following domain calls:
  1. 1.
    license.acuworkflow.com
  2. 2.
    smartsheet.com
  3. 3.
    api.smartsheet.com
  4. 4.
    api.smartsheet.eu
Proxy Server condition is typically observed when SmartBackup abends or displays "API Token or VaultID incorrect" though you know you have supplied the right information. Again it is because SmartBackup is trying to make API calls to Smartsheet and the Proxy Server prevents outbound API calls.

Configure Settings

Advanced Users or Administrators can further customize the platform by editing config.yml or by using Settings in the Console.

Settings

Please ensure when using the Console that you click on SAVE THE SETTINGS to affect any changes
Options
Option-Name
Option-Description
Default
1. GENERAL
1.1
Use sysadmin Token
When sysadmin Token mode is OFF, the Tenants directory is in use and every SmartBackup Tenant must have a valid Smartsheet API Token. However, when sysadmin Token mode is ON, the Members directory will be used, no individual API Tokens are required, and several centralized automated features become available.
Depends on your Installation type
2. BACKUP
2.1
Backup Sheet Rules
(This is a hidden switch. It can be configured in the config.yml file)
When ON, then when a Backup runs, it will include any automation rules in the Sheet backup copy. Then in those backup copies, if the automation rules are still valid, the automations will continue to run from every one of those backup copies in the vault, as well as from the “live” version of the sheet. This can be very confusing to users, and may have some unpredictable results.
OFF
2.2
Backup Sheet Shares
(This is a hidden switch. It can be configured in the config.yml file)
As with the rules situation, if this is turned on, then every backup copy in the vault will also contain those share rules, and the backup copies will also be shared with the same set of shared users. This means that every one of the backup copies will show up in those shared users’ “Sheets” folders, and that will also be confusing, and they may start making changes to one of the backup copies instead of the live sheet, for example.
OFF
2.3
Backup Cell Links
(This is a hidden switch. It can be configured in the config.yml file)
If turned ON, when SmartBackup creates a Backup copy of a sheet, it includes the cell links “in” from other sheets. So in that case, when a user opens the “live” sheet, they will see cell links that go “out” to the other “live” sheets as well as to each of the “backup” sheets
OFF
2.4
Addsheetid
If turned ON, SmartBackup will prefix sheetid to the backup copy name
OFF
3. ARCHIVE
3.1
Remove Backups if archives is successful
When ON, the backup copy in the Vault will be removed after it was successfully archived.
OFF
3.2
Path to where archives are saved
Specify the path to where you want to pool your archives. Path can be specified with or without trailing slash
c:\smartbackup\user\archives\
4. EXPORT
4.1
When OFF do not Export any Attachments
When ON, attachments of exported sheets will also be exported.
OFF
4.2
Soft Limit for exporting Attachments
Soft limit can be set to limit number of exported attachments. Only for Enterprise Edition.
10
4.3
Path to where exports are saved
Specify the path to where you want to pool your exports. Path can be specified with or without trailing slash
c:\smartbackup\user\exports\
5. NOTIFICATIONS & ALERTS
5.1
Notify User with status via email
When ON, every "Enabled" user will receive an email summary of operations performed for their account. Care should be taken because some users may find it intrusive.
OFF
5.2
Notify Administrator with overall status via email
When ON, "Administrator" user will receive an email summary of operations performed. Please supply valid email for Administrator.
OFF
5.3
Email address for SmartBackup Administrator
Supply valid administrator email address
5.4
Alert Incident Management System (IMS) via email
When ON, "IMS" system will receive an email when alert condition occurs. Multiple addresses can be supplied separated by commas.
OFF
5.5
Email address for IMS system
Supply valid IMS email address

Auto Provision Users and Vaults

SmartBackup Enterprise Edition includes a set of advanced features, management tools and technical support to achieve the highest levels of scalability, security, and uptime. It reduces the risk, cost, and complexity in deploying, and managing a large compliment of Smartsheet users.
The Administrator can optionally select sysadmin run mode which:

automatically provision Users

Unlike the Business Edition where each Smartsheet User requiring backup must be manually defined to SmartBackup, the Administrator can select sysadmin mode which will allow you to automatically provision Users from Smartsheet directly. In non sysadmin mode each User must obtain his/her APIToken which grants access to their data. The API Token is then defined to SmartBackup with other User details which allows SmartBackup to backup/export/archive data for that user using the AIPToken. In sysadmin mode a sysadmin token is used and API User Tokens no longer required.

automatically provision Backup Vaults

Unlike the Business Edition where each Smartsheet User requiring backup must manually defined a Backup Vault for each User, the Administrator can select sysadmin mode which will allow you to automatically provision Backup Vaults for each user.
The standard name for a provisioned Backup Vault is zz!~!-VAULT-do not delete!-:123456789012345. This is a standard SmartBackup name to identify a Workspace as a Backup Vault, where:
  1. 1.
    zz!~!-VAULT-do not delete!-: hardcoded name to identify it as a Backup Vault
  2. 2.
    123456789012345 is the generated Smartsheet ID for each User available from the Members screen
This way even in sharable conditions each User Vault will be easily identifiable.
When automatically creating Backup Vaults for each User a set of rules are applied:
  1. 1.
    If a VaultID is provided, it is checked for validity and that it links to a Workspace with the standard name.
  2. 2.
    If VaultID is not provided or invalid a scan is done to see if a Workspace with standard name exists, if so VaultID and links are updated respectively
  3. 3.
    If no Workspace can be found, a new Backup Vault with standard name is created and VaultID and links updated respectively.
When automatically deleting Backup Vaults for each User a set of rules are applied:
  1. 1.
    If a VaultID is provided, it is checked for validity and that it links to a Workspace with the standard name. If so, it will be removed and VaultID and links are removed.
  2. 2.
    If VaultID is not provided or invalid a scan is done to see if a Workspace with standard name exists, If so, it will be removed and VaultID and links are removed.

Running SmartBackup

SmartBackup was designed to run only when required. Therefore each component can run completely independently or in conjunction with other components. The Administrator can select how and when to run each of these. The Backup, Archive and Export components runs as a CMD program, and can be accessed in various ways, described below.

via the Console

SmartBackup can be controlled via a web user interface called the Console. To invoke the Console double click on console.exe or click on SmartBackup shortcut. After a short while a web page will be shown.

via the CMD Shell

If you're not familiar with the Command Prompt in Windows, officially called the Windows Command Processor and often abbreviated to CMD. It is the command line interface for Windows operating systems. A command line interface is a way of interacting with a computer directly using text commands.
There are a few ways to open the Command Prompt in Windows. Below are the most convenient:
  1. 1.
    Type "cmd" into the Start menu to search for it. Then click to invoke it
  2. 2.
    Press Windows key + R to open the Run box, then type "cmd" and hit Enter to open it
  3. 3.
    probably the most convenient is using Windows Explorer, naviagte to the apps directory where you have installed Smartbackup and then type CMD in top line which will open it.
Type cd followed by the path where you have installed SmartBackup cd c:\smartbackup
Now you can invoke backup by typing backup which will start running a backup job. Simarlarly you can do the same with Archive or Export
Each of these can be run with different settings for example backup -d=30 backup all sheets that were modified in last 30 days. The various settings are shown in the Reference Guide.

via Task Scheduler

SmartBackup relies on Windows Task Scheduler for scheduled automations.
This means if for example you want to run a Backup job every Monday at 18h00, you will have to create a task within Task Scheduler to do that. Please see Task Scheduler guide below on how to create scheduled tasks for SmartBackup.
taskscheduler.pdf
504KB
PDF
Click the link above to preview or download the guide.
One can use the Scheduling wizard in the Console (sub menu Schedule top right) to help define and manage tasks in Task Scheduler.

via other Applications

Great flexibility exists since operations could be invoked from other applications. You may perhaps have an Enterprise Job Scheduler or customized job operations applications. Typically these applications offer facilities to invoke cmdline programs e.g. archive.exe -a=5
Note
When invoking, the default installation directory should be set prior to invocation e.g. cd c:\smartbackup.

via PowerShell

PowerShell is specifically called-out since it is one of the go to tools for system administrators. If your commands are embedded in a .bat file you can simply from PowerShell enter cmd.exe /c "c:/path/mybat.bat".

Using the Console

HOME Screen

Invoke SmartBackup by clicking on the desktop shortcut or double click console.exe in the \apps folder. The following browser view will be shown after a slight delay by the Console Server. On day zero a warning will be displayed and all values will be unpredictable until the first backup run is done.
  1. 1.
    Sub menu Click to view sub menu actions or Stopping the Console Server. It is a good practice to stop the Console Server when finished.
  2. 2.
    Main Menu Show the primary actions around Backup, Archive and Exports
  3. 3.
    SmartBackup Vault Area From Home screen this tile represents a view of the Vault area. When you click on it, the Tenants view will first be shown from where you can select the Vault of a given Tenant which will take you into the Vault within Smartsheet
  4. 4.
    SmartBackup Archive Area From Home screen this tile represents a view of the Archive area. When you click on it, a Windows Explorer view will be opened on the root directory where archives are stored.
  5. 5.
    SmartBackup Export Area From Home screen this tile represents a view of the Export area. When you click on it, a Windows Explorer view will be opened on the root directory where exports are stored
  6. 6.
    Smartsheet View From Home screen this tile represents a view of your Smartsheet backup environment. It refreshes on every backup and maintains a copy of the frequency of your Smartsheet sheet changes. This information is valuable in determining the optimum backup set

BACKUP Screen

Click Backups on main menu on the left.
Although the Backup screen is shown here, the Archive and Exports screens are similar in layout and operation.
  1. 1.
    Run Now Click on this to run Backup on demand. After a slight delay a message will appear that a Backup process has started.
  2. 2.
    Schedule Click on this to view or create a Schedule for backups. The Windows Task scheduler is use for this purpose. If set Backups will be run according to the schedule.
  3. 3.
    Option When clicking on the dropdown a slider option becomes visible that you can set. Backup uses this to determine the backup set. For example if set to 10 it means backup only sheets that was modified in last 10 days. When using the scheduler or when you invoke the backup component directly this option is effected by using the -d argument. For example backup.exe -d 15 means backup all sheets modified in last 15 days or backup.exe -d 999 effectively means backup all sheets
  4. 4.
    Run Status Tile shows when last backup was taken. If any serious errors were encountered a red message will be shown, conversely a green message will be shown..
  5. 5.
    see previous runs a calendar view will be shown with entries when last ran for backups, archives or exports
  6. 6.
    Backups to date Table view of all backups to date
  7. 7.
    Source Link when clicked will show the source sheet within Smartsheet for which the backup was done
  8. 8.
    Target Link when clicked will show the backed-up copy within the Vault
  9. 9.
    Search You can search the Backup Catalog

Task Scheduler

SmartBackup relies on Windows Task Scheduler for scheduled automations.
Please see Task Scheduler guide below on how to create scheduled tasks for SmartBackup.
taskscheduler.pdf
504KB
PDF
Click the link above to preview or doanload the guide.
Your environment may require you to check "run with highest privileges" in Task Scheduler
Last modified 2mo ago