Accessing Duplicati backup from multiple computers

Say I am responsible for organizing backups for a bunch of computers that are as much as a few hours of driving away. Lets also say that each of these computers is using Duplicati to backup to S3 buckets. In the event of a catastrophic hardware failure on the source computer, one can restore as long as they have the necessary information (Duplicati AES key, AWS S3 bucket name, access key ID, and secret access key…or just an export of the Duplicati backup configuration). But are there any implications to having multiple Duplicati installations pointed at the same backup destination? (Obviously, the one wouldn’t actually execute any backups.)

I guess what I’m trying to ask is whether one could set up a workstation to point at the same backup destinations as several other Duplicati instances on other workstations, so that one could restore files on their behalf? And are their any implications to such a setup?

I have tested this and it works, with some caveats.

After you import the backup configuration, you’d want to change the scheduling option right away so it doesn’t try to run backups automatically. As you noted you should only do restores from this secondary machine and not run any backups.

Also you will need to recreate the local database. This may take some time. And any time in the future when you want to do a restore you’d need to recreate the local database again, since it won’t stay in sync with the actual computer running backups.

Excellent. I’m glad that it works. The caveats you’ve listed exactly match my expectations.

This could prove useful when helping a user that can’t restore files on their own and after a catastrophic event like a building burning down or a major hardware failure. Shouldn’t happen very often, but its worth having ready to go.

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Has anybody tried to backup also the local database of the machine under backup, and to restore this on the other machine before restoring the main backup? Are there any caveats (settings that have to change)? I would assume this is much faster than recreating the local database

I have backed up and restored the database before. I don’t see why it wouldn’t work.

But are there any implications to having multiple Duplicati installations pointed at the same backup destination?

Yes it is possible, I started my initial testing that same way… but eventually at the backup destination, I separated them into their own folders for each backup so it is easier than just having a jumble of files without knowing specifically which ones go to which backup.

You should never have two backup jobs (or two computers) backing up to exactly the same destination folder. Duplicati will complain, backups will probably get corrupted, etc.

The OP was talking about something a bit different. They wanted to restore files using a different computer, which is definitely doable.

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