Confusion between backup "frequency" and "period"


(Sybren) #1

The automatic backup feature of Discourse has a setting backup frequency. However, I suspect that this setting does not control the backup frequency, but rather the backup period (where period = 1/frequency), i.e. when set to 4 my suspicion is that it would create a backup every 4 days and not 4x per day.

This is not clear in the user interface. The hint below the setting says “How frequently we create a site backup, in days”, which indicates that indeed this is the period and not the frequency. It also doesn’t indicate whether it accepts integers or floats.

I would suggest either changing the (label of the) setting to backup period, or adding a little explanation that a setting of 4 would create a backup every 4 days. This would take away the ambiguity between “most likely explanation” and “actual literal meaning”.


Configure automatic backups for Discourse
(Jeff Atwood) #2

It seems quite clear to me. It is the frequency of backup in days.

If you think different wording would help, feel free to propose it.


(Matt Palmer) #3

“The period of time between backups”. You don’t measure frequency in units of time, you measure it in units of time-1 (aka 1/time).


(Sybren) #4

Saying that is the same as saying “this is the frequency of the sound in seconds”; it doesn’t make sense. Frequency (of sound, but also of other things) is measured in Hertz (1/time) and not in time. Maybe I’m being a bit pedantic about this, but in my experience getting the units of measurements right helps a lot in software development and the understanding of said software by end users.

@mpalmer’s suggestion of “The period of time between backups” looks fine to me; it could be shortened to just “Days between backups”.


(Marcus) #5

As a new user, it was unclear what the settings meant. I had to read the description, and then the next setting and figure out how the two work together. It wasn’t completely clear until I read your post about automated backups.


(Jeff Atwood) #6

Sure, @jomaxro can take this and make an edit so that the help text is clearer.


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #8

Copy updated:


(Joshua Rosenfeld) #9

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