Feature Request: Separate Settings simplification

It might be easier if the “separate settings” were applied using a layered approach.

As it is now, if you make a global change, you need to ensure that every one of your “separate settings” clients also get updated. You could, for example, have 100 clients with 40 of the clients using “separate settings”. If the only thing making them “separate” was a single setting like maybe customized Included Files and with all of the other settings mirroring the global settings, it is very tedious to make a global change to all clients because you have to manually update the 40 using “separate settings”.

It would be better to use a layered approach similarly to how Group Policies are applied in a Windows Server environment (if you happen to be familiar with that concept). All clients would start with the global settings. Then if any “separate settings” are defined for a client, only those individual settings that are changed/defined are applied as a layer on top of the global settings. The resulting combined settings are what the client uses.

Then we could make a change to any particular setting Globally and know that it will apply to all clients, except for those clients where we specifically made a unique change to that particular setting.

This approach would also pave the way for groups of clients with similar settings:
Global Settings (overlaid with) Group Settings (overlaid with) Individual Client Settings = Final Resulting Settings

I’m new to UrBackup over the last few days, so if this has already been discussed or if there is already a way to achieve this, I apologize.

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This is already implemented and how it works; however, as stated, any changes made to global settings afterwards will not be applied to the separate client.[quote=“Chad_Neeper, post:1, topic:2628”]
As it is now, if you make a global change, you need to ensure that every one of your “separate settings” clients also get updated. You could, for example, have 100 clients with 40 of the clients using “separate settings”. If the only thing making them “separate” was a single setting like maybe customized Included Files and with all of the other settings mirroring the global settings, it is very tedious to make a global change to all clients because you have to manually update the 40 using “separate settings”.
[/quote]

With you on that one, but if you create a global setting and disable separate settings, the client settings should then update. Then you can re-enable your separate client settings and add in what you need changed.

Alternatively, if they are practically identical in every way, you can put them into a group.

I know that Group and Client takes priority over Global, but I am not sure if Client takes priority over Group.

I understand the work-around you suggested: Disable separate settings, make the global setting change, and then re-enable the separate client settings. But it seems like a poor solution. It’s labor intensive and error prone, compounded as the number of clients with custom settings increases.

It’s much simpler and less error prone to simply treat all of the various individual settings as Global, unless overridden at a lower level. A Group setting would take priority over a Global setting and a Client setting would take priority over a Group setting. (That contrasts with the current implementation where the entire set of settings are Global unless the entire set of settings is marked as being “Separate”.)

It would then be very simple to make a Global (or Group level) change to any given individual setting, which would then take effect unless you’ve otherwise configured that individual setting at a Group (or Client) level.

As it is, I’ll have to dig deeper and get a better understanding of the Group setting you mentioned. I’m not familiar with that yet. Being new to UrBackup, I’m coming at this with fresh eyes. This is just an area that seems like it could be improved upon. As it is, it’s fine for installations without a ton of unique needs, but as you scale up it seems like it would become unwieldy fairly quickly.

2 cents, Thanks!

Have you found anything to simplify this process yet?

No, not really. The interface hasn’t really changed any that I’ve observed. I’ve “just dealt with it”. I’m only backing up 30 or so devices and most of them can be categorized into one of four or so groups with generally similar configurations. The configurations don’t change all that often, so it hasn’t been too unmanageable. If I was working in a more diverse environment, however, I probably would have moved on to some other backup software. As it is, I think the devs have done a very good job overall with urbackup and aside from a few quirks like this that could use improvement, it fits my own needs well enough.

If you find yourself using urbackup and have a need for numerous different configurations to accommodate various client device needs, I’d probably suggest documenting the various configurations outside of urbackup. (A spreadsheet would probably be a good choice.) Then you could do what ttrammell suggested and temporarily disable separate settings, make some global- or group-level change, and then manually re-apply all your separate settings. With good documentation, at least you wouldn’t be as much at risk of losing some previously-customized setting. It’s a pain in the rear, potentially takes a lot of time, and has lots of margin to introduce configuration errors, but it’s manageable if you’re meticulous and consistent at your documentation.

I’d still rather see a layered configuration approach, though, where you start with a global setting, then a group-level setting might be applied, followed by an individual client-level setting. The individual settings applied at each level would supersede the same setting applied at any earlier level, with the total cumulative result being what’s actually used for any given client. That would be SO much easier! (only in my opinion, of course.)