SQL Backup Master is a free software utility that can be used to back up Microsoft SQL Server Express databases to an off-site (or on-premises) destination on a scheduled basis. This tutorial will walk you through the steps.

To begin, download SQL Backup Master and install it on the computer that hosts the instance of SQL Server Express that you'd like to back up. All versions of SQL Server Express from 2005 onward are supported by SQL Backup Master.

Once installed, start SQL Backup Master. Select the Backup and restore tab in the main window, then click the New database backup toolbar button. The Database Backup Editor window will appear. Click the Choose SQL Server button, as shown below.

New SQL Server express database backup

The Connect to SQL Server window will now appear. When you expand the drop-down box below the Server name field, SQL Backup Master will build a list of installed SQL Server Express instances on the local machine, as well as SQL Server instances on the network. By default, SQL Server Express installs an instance named SQLExpress, which appears as (local)\SQLExpress in the Server name drop-down list. Select the desired instance and click the Test SQL Connection button to make sure SQL Backup Master can connect. Click OK.

Connect to SQL Server Express

The Database Backup Editor window will now connect to your SQL Server instance and list available databases. Select the databases you wish to back up, or select the Back up all non-system databases checkbox.

The next step is to add one or more backup destinations to your backup job. Use the Add toolbar button below the Destinations header to begin. For more information on the types of backup destinations available (as well as their settings), please see this help topic.

You can add and configure as many backup destinations as you like. For example, a single backup job can upload your database backup files to Amazon S3, Dropbox, and your NAS (network attached storage) - giving you a stronger level of backup redudancy.

Now give your backup job a name (and optional description) in the Configuration section of the Database Backup Editor window.

SQL Backup job editor

Finally, click the hyperlink that appears next to the schedule label and specify your preferred database backup schedule. Please see this help topic for more information on how to schedule database backups within SQL Backup Master.

Congratulations, you've now created a scheduled database backup for Microsoft SQL Server Express. Click the Save button in the Database Backup Editor window to save the backup job, which will now execute according to the schedule you defined in the previous step.

SQL Backup Master also makes it easy to restore your database backups in case of a disaster. We'll cover that process in detail in a future blog post.

The best way to experience SQL Backup Master is to try it for yourself.

Download NowUpgrade to Pro