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What is BackupConfiguration

A BackupConfiguration is a Kubernetes CustomResourceDefinition(CRD) which specifies the backup target, parameters(schedule, retention policy etc.) and a Repository object that holds snapshot storage information in a Kubernetes native way.

You have to create a BackupConfiguration object for each backup target. A backup target can be a workload, database or a PV/PVC.

BackupConfiguration CRD Specification

Like any official Kubernetes resource, a BackupConfiguration has TypeMeta, ObjectMeta and Spec sections. However, unlike other Kubernetes resources, it does not have a Status section.

A sample BackupConfiguration object to backup the volumes of a Deployment is shown below:

kind: BackupConfiguration
  name: demo-backup
  namespace: demo
  driver: Restic
    name: local-repo
    namespace: demo
  # task:
  #   name: workload-backup # task field is not required for workload data backup but it is necessary for database backup.
  schedule: "* * * * *" # backup at every minutes
  paused: false
  backupHistoryLimit: 3
  timeOut: 2h
    alias: app-data
      apiVersion: apps/v1
      kind: Deployment
      name: stash-demo
    - /source/data
    - /source/data/not-important.txt
    - /source/data/*.html
    - /source/data/tmp/*
    - name: source-data
      mountPath: /source/data
          - /bin/sh
          - -c
          - echo "Sample PreBackup hook demo"
      containerName: my-app-container
      executionPolicy: Always
          - /bin/sh
          - -c
          - echo "Sample PostBackup hook demo"
      containerName: my-app-container
          memory: 256M
          memory: 256M
        runAsUser: 2000
        runAsGroup: 2000
        adjustment: 5
        class: 2
        classData: 4
      - name:  my-private-registry-secret
      serviceAccountName: my-backup-svc
    medium: "Memory"
    sizeLimit: "2Gi"
    disableCaching: false
    maxRetry: 3
    delay: 10m
    name: 'keep-last-5'
    keepLast: 5
    prune: true

Here, we are going to describe the various sections of BackupConfiguration crd.

BackupConfiguration Spec

A BackupConfiguration object has the following fields in the spec section.


spec.driver indicates the mechanism used to backup a target. Currently, Stash supports Restic and VolumeSnapshotter as drivers. The default value of this field is Restic.

ResticUsed to backup workload data, persistent volumes data and databases. It uses restic to backup the target.
VolumeSnapshotterUsed to take snapshot of PersistentVolumeClaims of a targeted workload. It leverages Kubernetes VolumeSnapshot crd and CSI driver to snapshot the PVCs. field indicates the target for backup runs. This field consists of the following sub-fields:

  • : The alias is used as an identifer of the backed up data in the backend. This is particularly useful for BackupBatch where multiple targets are backed up into a single repository.

  • : refers to the target of backup. You have to specify apiVersion, kind and name of the target. Stash will use this information to inject a sidecar to the target or to create a backup job for it.

  • : specifies list of file paths to backup.

  • : Specifies a list of pattern for the files that should be ignored during backup. Stash will not backup the files that matches these patterns.

  • : are the list of volumes and their mountPaths that contain the target file paths. Stash will mount these volumes inside a sidecar container or a backup job.

  • indicates the VolumeSnapshotClass to use for volume snasphotting. Use this field only if spec.driver is set to VolumeSnapshotter.


spec.repository specifies the name and namespace of the Repository CR that holds the necessary backend information where the backed up data will be stored.

  • specifies the name of the Repository CR.
  • spec.repository.namespace specifies the namespace of the Repository. If you don’t provide this field, Stash will look for the Repository CR in the same namespace as the BackupConfiguration.


spec.schedule is a cron expression that specifies the schedule of backup. Stash creates a Kubernetes CronJob with this schedule.


spec.backupHistoryLimit specifies the number of BackupSession and its associate resources (Job, PVC etc.) to keep for debugging purposes. The default value of this field is 1. Stash will cleanup the old BackupSession and it’s associate resources after each backup session according to backupHistoryLimit. Stash will always keep the last completed BackupSession when backuphistorylimit>0. It will keep the last completed BackupSession even if it exceeds the history limit. This will help to keep the backup history when a backup gets skipped due to another running backup.


spec.timeOut specifies the maximum amount of time to wait for the backup to complete. If the backup doesn’t complete within this time limit, Stash will mark the respective BackupSession as Failed. You can specify the timeout in the following format:

  • Seconds 30s
  • Minutes 10m
  • Hours 1h
  • Combination of seconds, minutes, and hours 10m30s, 1h30m etc.

Stash does not support providing days (d) in the timeOut field. Use the equivalent hours instead.


spec.task specifies the name and parameters of the Task crd to use to backup the target.

  • indicates the name of the Task to use for this backup process.
  • spec.task.params: spec.task.params is an array of custom parameters to use to configure the task.

spec.task section is not required for backing up workload data (i.e. Deployment, DaemonSet, StatefulSet etc.). However, it is necessary for backing up databases and stand-alone PVCs.


spec.paused can be used as enable/disable switch for backup. If it is set true, Stash will not take any backup of the target specified by this BackupConfiguration.


spec.hooks allows performing some actions before and after the backup process. You can send HTTP requests to a remote server via httpGet or httpPost hooks. You can check whether a TCP socket is open using tcpSocket hook. You can also execute some commands into your application pod using exec hook.

  • spec.hooks.preBackup: spec.hooks.preBackup hooks are executed before the backup process.
  • spec.hooks.postBackup: spec.hooks.postBackup hooks are executed after the backup process. Unlike the preBackup hook, postBackup hook has an extra field named executionPolicy which let you execute hook based on the backup status. Currently, it support the following values:
    • Always: The hook will be executed after the backup process no matter the backup has failed or succeeded. This is the default behavior.
    • OnSuccess: The hook will be executed after the backup process only if the backup has succeeded.
    • OnFailure: The hook will be executed after the backup process only if the backup has failed.

For more details on how hooks work in Stash and how to configure different types of hook, please visit here.


spec.runtimeSettings allows to configure runtime environment for the backup sidecar or job. You can specify runtime settings at both pod level and container level.

  • spec.runtimeSettings.container

    spec.runtimeSettings.container is used to configure the backup sidecar/job at container level. You can configure the following container level parameters:

resourcesCompute resources required by the sidecar container or backup job. To learn how to manage resources for containers, please visit here.
livenessProbePeriodic probe of backup sidecar/job container’s liveness. Container will be restarted if the probe fails.
readinessProbePeriodic probe of backup sidecar/job container’s readiness. Container will be removed from service endpoints if the probe fails.
lifecycleActions that the management system should take in response to container lifecycle events.
securityContextSecurity options that backup sidecar/job’s container should run with. For more details, please visit here.
niceSet CPU scheduling priority for backup process. For more details about nice, please visit here.
ioniceSet I/O scheduling class and priority for backup process. For more details about ionice, please visit here.
envA list of the environment variables to set in the sidecar container or backup job’s container.
envFromThis allows to set environment variables to the container that will be created for this function from a Secret or ConfigMap.
  • spec.runtimeSettings.pod

    spec.runtimeSettings.pod is used to configure backup job in pod level. You can configure the following pod level parameters,

serviceAccountNameName of the ServiceAccount to use for the backup job. Stash sidecar will use the same ServiceAccount as the target workload.
nodeSelectorSelector which must be true for backup job pod to fit on a node.
automountServiceAccountTokenIndicates whether a service account token should be automatically mounted into the backup pod.
nodeNamenodeName is used to request to schedule backup job’s pod onto a specific node.
securityContextSecurity options that backup job’s pod should run with. For more details, please visit here.
imagePullSecretsA list of secret names in the same namespace that will be used to pull image from private Docker registry. For more details, please visit here.
affinityAffinity and anti-affinity to schedule backup job’s pod on a desired node. For more details, please visit here.
schedulerNameName of the scheduler that should dispatch the backup job.
tolerationsTaints and Tolerations to ensure that backup job’s pod is not scheduled in inappropriate nodes. For more details about toleration, please visit here.
priorityClassNameIndicates the backup job pod’s priority class. For more details, please visit here.
priorityIndicates the backup job pod’s priority value.
readinessGatesSpecifies additional conditions to be evaluated for Pod readiness. For more details, please visit here.
runtimeClassNameRuntimeClass is used for selecting the container runtime configuration. For more details, please visit here
enableServiceLinksEnableServiceLinks indicates whether information about services should be injected into pod’s environment variables.


Stash mounts an emptyDir for holding temporary files. It is also used for caching for faster backup performance. You can configure the emptyDir using spec.tempDir section. You can also disable caching using this field. The following fields are configurable in spec.tempDir section:

  • spec.tempDir.medium : Specifies the type of storage medium should back this directory.
  • spec.tempDir.sizeLimit : Maximum limit of storage for this volume.
  • spec.tempDir.disableCaching : Disable caching while backup. This may negatively impact backup performance. This is set to false by default.


For some targets (i.e. some databases), Stash can’t directly pipe the dumped data to the uploading process. In this case, it has to store the dumped data temporarily before uploading to the backend. spec.interimVolumeTemplate specifies a PVC template for holding those data temporarily. Stash will create a PVC according to the template and use it to store the data temporarily. This PVC will be deleted according to the spec.backupHistoryLimit.

Note that the usage of this field is different than spec.tempDir which is used for caching purpose. Stash has introduced this field because the emptyDir volume that is used for spec.tempDir does not play nice with large databases( i.e. 100Gi database). Also, it provides debugging capability as Stash keeps it until it hits the limit specified in spec.backupHistoryLimit.


spec.retryConfig is an optional field the let users to specify a retry logic for failed backup. It has the following fields:

  • spec.retryConfig.maxRetry specifies the maximum number of times Stash should retry a failed backup.

  • spec.retryConfig.delay specifies the amount of time to wait before retrying a failed backup. You can specify the delay in the following format:

    • Seconds 30s
    • Minutes 10m
    • Hours 1h
    • Combination of seconds, minutes, and hours 10m30s, 1h30m etc.

    Stash does not support providing days (d) in the delay field. Use the equivalent hours instead.


spec.retentionPolicy specifies the policy to follow for cleaning old snapshots. Following options are available to configure retention policy:

PolicyValuerestic forget command flagDescription
namestringName of retention policy. You can provide any name.
keepLastinteger–keep-last nNever delete the n last (most recent) snapshots.
keepHourlyinteger–keep-hourly nFor the last n hours in which a snapshot was made, keep only the last snapshot for each hour.
keepDailyinteger–keep-daily nFor the last n days which have one or more snapshots, only keep the last one for that day.
keepWeeklyinteger–keep-weekly nFor the last n weeks which have one or more snapshots, only keep the last one for that week.
keepMonthlyinteger–keep-monthly nFor the last n months which have one or more snapshots, only keep the last one for that month.
keepYearlyinteger–keep-yearly nFor the last n years which have one or more snapshots, only keep the last one for that year.
keepTagsarray–keep-tag Keep all snapshots which have all tags specified by this option (can be specified multiple times).
prunebool–pruneIf set true, Stash will cleanup unreferenced data from the backend.
dryRunbool–dry-runStash will not remove anything but print which snapshots would be removed.

BackupConfiguration Status

A BackupConfiguration object has the following fields in the status section.

  • observedGeneration : The most recent generation observed by the BackupConfiguration controller.

  • conditions : The spec.conditions shows current backup setup condition for this BackupConfiguration. The following conditions are set by the Stash operator:

Condition TypeUsage
RepositoryFoundIndicates whether the respective Repository object was found or not.
BackendSecretFoundIndicates whether the respective backend secret was found or not.
CronJobCreatedIndicates whether the backup triggering CronJob was created or not.
ValidationPassedIndicates whether the resource has passed validation checks or not.

Next Steps

  • Learn how to configure BackupConfiguration to backup workloads data from here.
  • Learn how to configure BackupConfiguration to backup databases from here.
  • Learn how to configure BackupConfiguration to backup stand-alone PVC from here.