Bash scripts for backup/restore of Nextcloud
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Bash scripts for backup/restore of Nextcloud.

It is based on a Nextcloud installation using nginx and PostgreSQL/MariaDB (see the (German) tutorial Nextcloud auf Ubuntu Server 22.04 LTS mit nginx, PostgreSQL/MariaDB, PHP, Lets Encrypt, Redis und Fail2ban).
The scripts can also be used when Apache is used as webserver.

General information

For a complete backup of any Nextcloud instance, you'll have to backup these items:

  • The Nextcloud file directory (usually /var/www/nextcloud)
  • The data directory of Nextcloud (it's recommended that this is not located in the web root, so e.g. /var/nextcloud_data)
  • The Nextcloud database
  • Maybe a local external storage mounted into Nextcloud

With these scripts, all these elements can be included in a backup.


  • pigz ( when using backup compression. If not installed already, it can be installed with apt install pigz (Debian/Ubuntu). If not available, you can use another compression algorithm (e.g. gzip)

Important notes about using the scripts

  • After cloning or downloading the scripts, these need to be set up by running the script (see below).
  • If you do not want to use the automated setup, you can also use the file NextcloudBackupRestore.conf.sample as a starting point. Just make sure to rename the file when you are done (cp NextcloudBackupRestore.conf.sample NextcloudBackupRestore.conf)
  • The configuration file NextcloudBackupRestore.conf has to be located in the same directory as the scripts for backup/restore.
  • The scripts assume that Nextcloud's data directory is not a subdirectory of the Nextcloud installation (file directory). The general recommendation is that the data directory should not be located somewhere in the web folder of your webserver (usually /var/www/), but in a different folder (e.g. /var/nextcloud_data). For more information, see here.
  • However, if your data directory is located under the Nextcloud file directory, you'll have to change the script configuration (file NextcloudBackupRestore.conf after running so that the data directory is not part of the backup/restore (otherwise, it would be copied twice).
  • The scripts only backup the Nextcloud data directory and can backup a local external storage mounted into Nextcloud. If you have any other external storage mounted in Nextcloud (e.g. FTP), these files have to be handled separately.
  • The scripts support nginx and Apache as webserver.
  • The scripts support MariaDB/MySQL and PostgreSQL as database.
  • You should have enabled 4 byte support (see Nextcloud Administration Manual) on your Nextcloud database. Otherwise, when you have not enabled 4 byte support, you have to edit the restore script, so that the database is not created with 4 byte support enabled (variable dbNoMultibyte).
  • The scripts can exclude the Nextcloud data directory from backup and restore.
    WARNING: Excluding the data directory is NOT RECOMMENDED as it leaves the backup in an inconsistent state and may result in data loss!


  1. Clone the repository: git clone
  2. Set permissions:
    • chown -R root Nextcloud-Backup-Restore
    • cd Nextcloud-Backup-Restore
    • chmod 700 *.sh
  3. Call the (interactive) script for automated setup (this will create a file NextcloudBackupRestore.conf containing the desired configuration): ./
  4. Important: Check this configuration file if everything was set up correctly (see TODO in the configuration file comments)
  5. Start using the scripts: See sections Backup and Restore below

Keep in mind that the configuration file NextcloudBackupRestore.conf hast to be located in the same directory as the scripts for backup/restore, otherwise the configuration will not be found.

Some optional options are not configured using, but are set to default values in NextcloudBackupRestore.conf. These are the "dangerous" options which usually should not be changed and are marked as 'OPTIONAL' in NextcloudBackupRestore.conf


In order to create a backup, simply call the script on your Nextcloud machine. If this script is called without parameter, the backup is saved in a directory with the current time stamp in your main backup directory: As an example, this would be /media/hdd/nextcloud_backup/20170910_132703. The backup script can also be called with a parameter specifying the main backup directory, e.g. ./ /media/hdd/nextcloud_backup. In this case, the directory specified will be used as main backup directory.

You can also call this script by cron. Example (at 2am every night, with log output):

0 2 * * * /path/to/scripts/Nextcloud-Backup-Restore/ > /path/to/logs/Nextcloud-Backup-$(date +\%Y\%m\%d\%H\%M\%S).log 2>&1


Call in order to restore a backup.
When this script is called without parameters, it lists the backups available for restore.
In order to restore a backup, call this script with a parameter specifying the name (i.e. timestamp) of the backup to be restored. In this example, this would be 20170910_132703. The full command for a restore would be ./ 20170910_132703. You can also specify the main backup directory with a second parameter, e.g. ./ 20170910_132703 /media/hdd/nextcloud_backup.