Maintenance Plan Wizard (Define Backup Database Transaction Log Task Page)

Use the Define Backup Database Transaction Log Task page to add a backup task to the maintenance plan.

To start the Maintenance Plan Wizard

To change maintenance tasks

Backup type

Displays the type of backup to be performed.


Specify the databases affected by this task.

  • All databases

    Generate a maintenance plan that runs this task against all SQL Server databases, except tempdb.

  • All system databases

    Generate a maintenance plan that runs this task against each of the SQL Server system databases except tempdb. No maintenance tasks are run against user-created databases.

  • All user databases

    Generate a maintenance plan that runs this task against all user-created databases. No maintenance tasks are run against the SQL Server system databases.

  • These specific databases

    Generate a maintenance plan that runs this task against only those databases that are selected. At least one database in the list must be selected if this option is chosen.

Backup component

Not available for transaction log backups.

Backup set will expire

Specifies when the backup set can be overwritten by another backup set.

Back up to

Back up the database to a file or to tape. Only tape devices attached to the computer containing the database are available.

Back up database across one or more files

Click Add to open the Select Backup Destination dialog box, and provide one or more a disk location, or tape device.

Click Remove to remove a file from the box.

Click Contents to read the file header and display the current backup contents of the file.

If backup files exist

Specify how to handle existing backups. Select Overwrite to remove the old content of a file or tape, and replace it with this new backup. Select Append to add the new backups after any existing backups in the file or on the tape.

Create a backup file for every database

Create a backup file in the location specified in the folder box. One file is created for each database selected.

Create a sub-directory for each database

Create a sub-directory under the specified disk directory that contains the database backup for each database being backed up as part of the maintenance plan.

Important noteImportant

The sub-directory will inherit permissions from the parent directory. Restrict permissions to avoid unauthorized access.


Specify the folder to contain the automatically created database files.

Backup file extension

Specify the extension to use for the backup files. The default is .bak.

Verify backup integrity

Verify that the backup set is complete and that all volumes are readable.

Back up the tail of the log, and leave the database in the restoring state

Perform a log backup as the last step before restoring a database. For more information, see Tail-Log Backups.

Set backup compression

In SQL Server 2008 Enterprise (or later versions), select one the following backup compression values:

Use the default server setting

Click to use the server-level default.

This default is set by the backup compression default server-configuration option. For information about how to view the current setting of this option, see How to: View or Change the backup compression default Option (SQL Server Management Studio).

Compress backup

Click to compress the backup, regardless of the server-level default.

Important noteImportant
By default, compression significantly increases CPU usage, and the additional CPU consumed by the compression process might adversely affect concurrent operations. Therefore, you might want to create low-priority compressed backups in a session whose CPU usage is limited by Resource Governor. For more information, see How to: Use Resource Governor to Limit CPU Usage by Backup Compression (Transact-SQL).

Do not compress backup

Click to create an uncompressed backup, regardless of the server-level default.

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