Vault: Backup and Restore

This page describes how backups and restores of Vault can be done when using the integrated Raft storage. See the Raft storage tutorial for a thorough example.

For other storage backends, use the appropriate backup/restore proceduers for the specific implementation.


The Vault CLI provides a snapshot feature which downloads a snapshot of the current Raft storage state. The snapshot is encrypted with the Vault master key and can therefore only be used together with the unseal or recovery keys.


To restore a Vault instance from a snapshot, the snapshot restore command can be used. This command will upload the snapshot to Vault and restore it. This must happen while Vault is running and will result in a brief downtime.

To force the restore of a snapshot with different unseal keys -force needs to be specified. This might be the case if you’re restoring Vault to a new (empty) instance.