Long-Term Retention Policy (GFS)

The long-term or Grandfather-Father-Son (GFS) retention policy allows you to store backup files for long periods of time — for weeks, months and even years. For this purpose, Veeam Agent for Microsoft Windows does not create any special new backup files — it uses backup files created while backup job runs and marks these backups with specific GFS flags.

To mark a backup file for long-term retention, Veeam Agent can assign to the file the following types of GFS flags: weekly (W), monthly (M) and yearly (Y). The types of GFS flags that Veeam Agent assigns depend on the configured GFS retention policy settings.

Long-Term Retention Policy (GFS)NOTE

GFS flags can be assigned only to full backup files created during the time period specified in GFS policy settings.

If Veeam Agent assigns a GFS flag to a full backup file, this backup file can no longer be deleted or modified. Veeam Agent does not apply short-term retention policy settings to the full backup file. For example, Veeam Agent ignores the backup file when determining whether the number of allowed backup files is exceeded.

When the specified retention period ends, Veeam Agent unassigns the GFS flag from the full backup file. If the backup file does not have any other GFS flags assigned, it can be modified and deleted according to the short-term retention policy.

Veeam Agent assigns GFS flags in the similar way as Veeam Backup & Replication does for VM backup files. To learn about logic behind GFS flags, see the Assignment of GFS Flags and Removal of GFS Flags sections in the Veeam Backup & Replication User Guide.


When planning to use GFS retention policy, mind the following limitations:

Related Topics

GFS Retention Policy Settings