Shared Web Hosting File Backups

Last updated: January 12, 2023
Audience: All UW

Important: UW Information Technology backups are intended only for recovery in case of accident or disaster and do not meet records retention requirements.

Also, please note: Shared Web Hosting is aligning its retention practices for deleted files with a recently approved UW reference architecture practice; deleted files will not persist in backups beyond 90 days.

When and Why UW Email Folders and Other User Files Are Backed Up

UW Information Technology runs a program each night that makes backup copies of folders and other user files on the computers UW-IT operates. The purpose of the backups, which copy the data from disk to tape, is to give the system administrator a means to restore files should some type of hardware crash or system failure occur.

Backup copies of UW Web Publishing and other files are kept for up to 90 days, as described below. If you need to restore files which were removed by mistake, contact the UW Information Technology Service Center at or 206-221-5000.

User Files and Web Directories Backup Retention

Backups of User Files and Web Directories are Kept for up to 90 days

As time passes, available backups become less and less frequent. For instance, for the past week, we have daily backups available. For the week prior, we only have a backup available from up to 7 days back. This will affect what version of your files are restored. If you ask for a file from 2 months ago, the only version available may be up to 30 days older than what you anticipated. See the table below for the backup schedule:

Age of backup Period between available backups
Less than 7 days Daily
7-30 days Every week
1-3 months Every month

Please note that these times are approximate.