Restoring Your Database From A Backup

In some cases, you may need to restore your server by using created backups of your database. (You have been Backing up your Server, right?) This can be necessary after computer failure, or if a power outage has caused issues with your current database. You may have also received a backup as a result of your data being converted into MacPractice's format.

This article covers how to restore a backup to get you back up and running.

Before continuing, please verify that MacPractice has been fully installed and the MacPractice Server has been restarted.

Converted Data from Another System
When you purchase a conversion from another system, you will receive an e-mail with a MacPractice data file attached. This file will contain the information you had converted from the other system. Place this file on your desktop for easy accessibility.

Restoring Data from a Previously Made Backup

Previously made backups that are automatically created are usually placed in the /Library/MacPracticeBackups/ path, although this can be different if you have picked a different location. You can either use this location, or you can move the desired backup to the desktop so it's easier to find when selecting.

The backup file will look like this. 

Restoring from a Backup

The process to restore a backup in MacPractice is dependent upon the build of MacPractice you're restoring to.

Restoring on Builds 12.11 and up

In builds of MacPractice 12.11 and higher, the method for restoring the database from a backup is conducted in the Server Management App. You can access the Server Management App from the MacPractice Login Window by clicking the Triple-dot icon in the upper right hand corner, then clicking the "Show Server Management App" button.


If you don't see the Server Management App pop up, you can also find the Server Management App by navigating to this URL in any web browser:


Once the Server Management App is open, you'll click the menu icon in the upper left hand corner and select Database. Once you're on the Database Management Page, you can click the "Restore From Backup" button at the bottom.


From here, you can select the backup you wish to restore from by using the "Choose" button on the right and click "Restore" when you're ready. 



The backup must be present in the /Library/MacPracticeBackups folder in order to be selected. If it is not, you'll want to navigate there in Finder and deposit the backup there. (Note: On Build 15.13, you can select a different path to restore a backup from)

If your current OS User does not have privileges to access this folder, you may also need to grant yourself privileges in System Preferences > Users and Groups > macpractice_backup. Be sure to log in and out if you needed to change your access in System Preferences for that change to take effect.



In most cases you'll want to use the "main production database" if this is an active Server that you're using. If this is intended as a temporary or a test server, you may wish to use the second option, as this will restrict certain credentials from carrying over that are used to communicate with other third party products. The following information will not be carried over from the backup:

  • Autoremind User
  • Username
  • eStatement Password
  • Medavant PP Password
  • Demandforce Configuration information
  • NEA
  • UpDox Faxing user and password
  • Direct Messaging user information
  • Phone numbers and e-mails for all patients


Restoring on Builds 12.5 and earlier 

To start the restoration process, on the Server Computer launch MacPractice, and then in the resulting login window,  click the Gear Icon in the upper right hand corner. This will flip the login window to the Database Connection Settings fields.

Click the Lock icon and enter the computers Administrator User Name and Password. Next, click the Restore Database button.


If this is the first time you have opened MacPractice after restarting your computer, the Security Password window will appear. This is the password that was created doing the installation process. This password is required after the server computer has been restarted. 
After entering the Security password, click the OK button. This will open an authentication window requesting the computer's Administrator username and password. Enter the credentials and click the OK button.
Find the location where your converted data file has been placed. Select the file then select Open. You will then be presented with a Warning: Restoring Database From Backup! prompt.


The checkbox in the middle of this prompt, "I am restoring data for my main production database" will carry over all authentication credentials for third party services such as any Reminder Services, eStatements, Direct Messaging, and any other services. If you are restoring on your server computer, you will want to leave this option checked.
If you are setting up a secondary server (which can be done for a variety of reasons) that will be operational in addition to the original server, you will want to uncheck this option to prevent potential data loss that would be caused by multiple servers synchronizing their data to third party services.
If that checkbox is unchecked, the following information will not be carried over from the backup:
  • Autoremind User
  • Username
  • eStatement Password
  • Medavant PP Password
  • Demandforce Configuration information
  • NEA
  • UpDox Faxing user and password
  • Direct Messaging user information
  • Phone numbers and e-mails for all patients
Once you have decided and clicked the Restore button, another pop up will appear to verify that you want to overwrite the database.
There may be a slight pause while MacPractice prepares. When the restoration process starts it is very important that you do not force quit while MacPractice is restoring.

When MacPractice has completed the restoration process, restart MacPractice.
Once Restoration is Complete
 After MacPractice restarts, open the MacPractice Login window. Use the default username and password (admin/password) to open MacPractice. After logging in, you may be required to update the database. Click the Update button to continue. When MacPractice has finished updating, it will open to the default Patient window.
MacPractice will open and you can begin to enter information. You will have access to the MacPractice tutorial documentation and videos located on the MacPractice HelpDesk. We recommend the New User Orientation videos when first starting to learn MacPractice.
You will also need to connect any client computers to this server. Follow the documentation for installing or updating client computers. If the client computers are already on the same version of MacPractice, simply update the drawer information to connect them to the new server. 
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