1-800-691-1991 | 9am - 8pm ET

Backup Copy – Animation of Retention


This article is intended to document how Backup Copy’s retention is enforced.


Backup Copy Retention – Simple Retention Policy
To maintain the desired number of restore points, Veeam Backup & Replication uses the following rotation scheme:
1. At the first synchronization interval, Veeam Backup & Replication copies the first restore point — full backup — to the target backup repository.
2. At every next synchronization interval, Veeam Backup & Replication adds a new restore point — incremental backup — to the chain on the target backup repository. This happens until the number of restore points in the backup chain reaches the number specified in the retention policy settings.
3. After the new restore point is added, the allowed number of restore point is exceeded. Veeam Backup & Replication transforms the backup chain to make room for the most recent restore point.
The backup chain transformation is performed in the following way:
1. Veeam Backup & Replication re-builds the full backup file to include changes of the incremental backup following the full backup. More specifically, it injects data blocks from the first incremental backup in the chain into the full backup. This way, a full backup ‘moves’ one step forward in the backup chain.
2. The first incremental backup is removed from the chain as redundant: its data has already been injected into the full backup and so the full backup file contains the same data as this incremental restore point.
User-added image

Within this animation the lettered squares represent blocks on a disk.
Backup Copy Retention – “GFS” Retention Policy
GFS restore points are not created in a separate task. Veeam Backup & Replication re-uses a full backup created in the regular backup cycle and propagates it to the appropriate tier.
For an in-depth explanation of this please see:
For example below the following settings are used:
User-added image

Within this animation the lettered squares represent blocks on a disk.
User-added image

Veeam Backup & Replication
7.x, 8.x, 9.x
Last Modified:
Please rate how helpful this article was to you:
5 out of 5 based on 1 ratings
Thank you for helping us improve!
An error occurred during voting. Please try again later.

Couldn't find what you were looking for?

Below you can submit an idea for a new knowledge base article.
Report a typo on this page:

Please select a spelling error or a typo on this page with your mouse and press CTRL + Enter to report this mistake to us. Thank you!

Spelling error in text

Knowledge base content request
By submitting, you agree that your personal data will be managed by Veeam in accordance with the Privacy Policy.

ty icon

Thank you!

We have received your request and our team will reach out to you shortly.


error icon

Oops! Something went wrong.

Please go back try again later.