Making Backups in the GUI

Making a backup in the GUI is simple:

  • Navigate to Diagnostics > Backup & Restore

  • Set any desired options, or leave the options at their default values.

  • Click Download Configuration as XML (Figure GUI Backup).


GUI Backup

The web browser will then prompt to save the file somewhere on the PC being used to view the GUI. It will be named config-<hostname>-<timestamp>.xml, but that may be changed before saving the file.

Backup Options

When performing a backup, GUI options are available to control what is contained within the backup file.

Backup Area

Limits the backup contents to a single configuration area, rather than a complete configuration backup.


When restoring a configuration containing only a single area, the Restore area value must be set to match.

Skip Packages

When set, omits installation data and settings for packages from the backup. This is useful to quickly remove all traces of packages from a configuration.

Skip RRD Data

When set (default), the data used to generate monitoring graphs (Monitoring Graphs) is exported and included in the backup, so that when the configuration is restored later, the graph data is also restored.

Include Extra Data

When set, additional data is stored in the backup file. This includes Captive Portal databases and DHCP lease databases. These databases are volatile, and thus can be useful for transferring to new hosts or for frequent backups, but are not as useful for long-term backups.


When set, the GUI presents Password and confirmation fields, the contents of which are used by pfSense® software to encrypt the contents of the backup file with AES-256 before download.