Back Up a Cluster


This feature is not available for M0 (Free Tier), M2, and M5 clusters. For more information, see Atlas M0 (Free Tier), M2, and M5 Limitations.

Enabling backup for your cluster allows you to restore from stored snapshots or from a selected point in time within the last 24 hours.

Enable Backup

You can enable backup during the cluster creation or during the modification of an existing cluster.

Specifically, in the cluster configuration, set Do you want to enable backup? to Yes.

Backup Data

Atlas backup service takes snapshots of the data. These snapshots only stores the differences between successive snapshots. For sharded clusters, the backup service temporarily stop the balancer via the mongos in order to insert a marker token into all shards and config servers in the cluster. Atlas takes a snapshot when the marker tokens appear in the backup data.

Atlas provides the functionality to query specific backup snapshot. For details, see Query a Backup Snapshot.

Data Centers

Each project has one backup data center location dictated by the first backup-enabled cluster created in that project.

For single-region Atlas clusters created after June 21st, 2017, Atlas stores backup data for an Atlas cluster in a data center specific to the cluster’s geographic region.

For multi-region Atlas clusters, Atlas stores backup data for the cluster in a data center specific to the geographical location of the cluster’s Preferred Region.


All additional backup-enabled clusters created in the project use the backup data center selected during deployment of the project’s first backup-enabled cluster regardless of the geographical location of the cluster region or regions.

To change the data center location of a cluster, you must disable backups for all clusters in the project. You can then enable backups for a cluster whose geographic region corresponds to the data center location of your choice.

Cluster Location Backup Service Location
Germany Germany
United Kingdom United Kingdom
Australia Australia
All other cluster locations Ireland

Atlas retains these snapshots based on the retention policy.

Modify Backup Schedule

If you enable backup for a cluster, Atlas takes a base snapshot of your data every 6 hours.

To change a deployment’s backup schedule, go to Backup. For the cluster whose backup schedule you wish to modify, click the ellipsis and select Edit Snapshot Schedule menu option.

Retention Policy

Atlas retains snapshots for the time periods listed in the following table. If you disable backup for a cluster or terminate a cluster, Atlas immediately deletes the backup snapshots for the cluster.

Snapshot Default Retention Policy Maximum Retention Setting
Base snapshot. 2 days 5 days.
Daily snapshot 7 days 360 days
Weekly snapshot 4 weeks 52 weeks
Monthly snapshot 13 months 36 months