Cloud and Automated Backups

Cloud and Automated Backups

Practice-Web's technical support team only supports the built-in backup tool with local backups. (See the Database Backups page for more information on this.)

Please work with your IT consultant if you'd like to automate your backups or store your Practice-Web backups in the cloud.

What to Back Up

These folders should be backed up:
  1. mysql\data\ - The database that stores patient data.
  2. FreeDentalImages\ - The A to Z Folder that store files you scan or import. 

As always, backups should be encrypted, and regularly restored to another machine to verify quality.

MySQL Service
Automated stopping and starting of the MySQL service is not important because backups can safely be done without stopping the MySQL service. You would never restore directly to the live database location, so the backup service is not involved with the actual final move of the restored data to the live location. All of the backup services are good at copying locked files. In the rare case that a locked file causes a failure, it should only affect that one file and should not be a major problem. When restoring a database using the data provided by your backup service, follow these general steps.
  1. Restore to a new location (like C:\restored files\ or to another machine), not to your live database on your server.
  2. Stop the MySQL Service.
  3. Make a manual local backup of your current database (if there is one still there).
  4. Delete the current database.
  5. Place the restored database in the location where your live data was.
  6. Turn back on the MySQL service.

Choosing a Cloud Backup Service

Again, it's best to work with your IT professional when setting up your cloud backups and selecting services. There is no singular "best" cloud backup service. Each one has benefits and drawbacks, so you'll need to select the right one for your needs.

Specialized Cloud Backup Services

Dental HIPAA & IT
Operated by John Zanazzi, author, educator, IT pro, and long-time Practice-Web specialist, Dental HIPAA & IT provides HIPAA compliance services and technical support. Complete cloud backup management is available as a standalone service or as part of a package. Consultations are free. You can get to know him and learn more about your backup options in our on-demand webinar "Ransomware: Protecting Your Dental Practice from Attack."

The Dental HIPAA & IT backup plan includes:
  1. Backup setup in Practice-Web
  2. Ongoing cloud backups of your data
  3. 2 hard drives for regular on-site backups
  4. A disaster recovery plan (required by HIPAA)
  5. A restore plan with testing every two months (required by HIPAA)
  6. Ongoing white glove support for your backups.

Central Data Storage
  1. Meet mandatory requirements for a data backup plan, disaster recovery plan, and emergency mode operation plan
  2. Managed STaaS (storage as a service)
  3. Email encryption (CDSmail)
  4. Confidentiality Agreement (CA)
  5. Business Associate Agreement (BAA)
  6. Unlimited storage, archiving, and versions
  7. Data compression
  8. File retrieval
  9. Satisfy 88 of the 168 HIPAA audit controls
  10. No contracts

Other Cloud Backup Options

  1. Carbonite
  2. iDrive
  3. SugarSync

Folder Synchronization (for Replication)

Distributed File System (DFS)
A good folder synchronization technology if each replication server has a Windows Server operating system. Learn more at

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