Slack is a highly popular collaboration tool that is used by teams all over the world. So the tasks of export, import, regular backup, splitting, or merging workspaces occur regularly.

In this post, we are going to show you how to export Slack data with the help of Backupery for Slack application. As you might already know Backupery for Slack makes regular and scheduled backups of Slack data to the destinations of your choice.  The complete app description is here, so in this post, we are going to focus on how to use the application.

There are two editions of Backupery for Slack application: Personal and Workspace.

  • The Personal edition backs up the data (public & private channels, direct messages, group direct messages, files, etc.) which the user who installs the app is related to. For example, if the user takes part in a channel, then the whole channel is exported (including messages and uploaded files of all the members). If the user is not in a channel, the channel is not exported. The same is true for the direct messages and the group direct messages. Note, all the public channels are always exported, even if the user does not take part in some of them. In other words, the Personal edition works on behalf of the installing user.
  • Backupery for Slack Workspace is supposed to export any data which is available in a workspace. So it’s not so important who installs the application (although the user must have permission to install the app). Even if the user does not have access to some particular conversation, it’s still possible to export the conversation by the app

So you should first decide which app edition you need. The general rule is that if you need to export conversations in which you participate then you should go with the Personal edition, but if you need any other conversations available in a Slack workspace then you should use the Workspace edition. If you decided to go with Backupery for Slack Personal, then continue reading, if you decided to go with Backupery for Slack Workspace, skip to Getting Started with Backupery for Slack Workspace.

Getting Started with Backupery for Slack Personal

  1. Download Backupery for Slack Personal installer package from the product page.
  2. Install it on your computer and run the application.
  3. If you have not configured the application before, it offers you to run the export wizard. Press the Run export wizard button:
  4. In order to export the data from a workspace, you will also need to install the related Slack application to the workspace. The related Slack application is also called “Backupery for Slack”. To install the Slack application, press the Sign In to Slack button:
  5. After pressing the Sign In to Slack button, your default web browser should be opened. If you already logged in to your Slack account in the web browser, make sure you selected the right workspace on the top right and press the Allow button:
  6. If you are not logged in to your Slack account, just type the workspace name and press the Continue button:
    Please note, by default, any member is allowed to install any application for Slack. However, a workspace admin or an owner may limit usage to pre-approved apps. If the app was not pre-approved you will see the message that you are not authorized to install the application. In this case, see this article.
  7. As Backupery for Slack Personal is installed, you are ready to go. Just press the Export now button and see how the app exports the data:
  8. You are set – your data is started to backup immediately. So you may go to General Features.

Getting Started with Backupery for Slack Workspace

  1. Download Backupery for Slack Workspace installer package from the product page.
  2. Install it on your computer and run the application.
  3. If you have not configured the application before, it offers you to run the export wizard. Press the Run export wizard button:
  4. In order to export the data from a workspace, you will also need to install the related Slack application to the workspace. The related Slack application is also called “Backupery for Slack Workspace”. To install the Slack application, press the Sign In to Slack button:
  5. After pressing the Sign In to Slack button, your default web browser should be opened. If you already logged in to your Slack account in the web browser, make sure you selected the right workspace on the top right and press the Allow button:
  6. If you are not logged in to your Slack account, just type the workspace name and press the Continue button:
    Please note, by default, any member is allowed to install any application for Slack. However, a workspace admin or an owner may limit usage to pre-approved apps. If the app was not pre-approved you will see the message that you are not authorized to install the application. In this case, see this article.
  7. Public & Private Channels export setup. To export messages and files from a specific channel (public or private), it is necessary to add the application to the channel first. There are two alternative ways to add Backupery for Slack Workspace to a channel.
    1. Add the app to a channel using the “/invite” command. Arbitrary user who take part in the channel may add the app using the following command: /invite @Backupery for Slack Workspace
    2. Add the app to a conversation using the app settings. Alternatively, you can add the app to a channel using the app settings. Just click the application and then select Add this app to a channel…Please note, to make the app export a channel that is not available for the user who installed the app, it’s necessary to add the app to the channel by any other user who takes part in the channel.Example. Assume there are User1, User2, and User3 on a workspace; User1 installs the app. There is also a private channel on a workspace so that User1 is not in the channel, but User2 and User3 are in the channel. To export the channel, it is necessary to add the application by User2 or User3, because User1 is unable to do that as the channel is simply not visible to the user.
  8. Direct Messages and Group Direct Messages export setup. To export any Direct Messages or Group Direct Messages, it is necessary to install a separate Slack app called Backupery for Slack Assistant by any member of the conversation. Backupery for Slack Workspace communicates with the installed Backupery for Slack Assistant applications and exports Direct Messages and Group Direct Messages by means of them. To install Backupery for Slack Assistant, a user should follow this shareable URL:
    https://slack.com/oauth/v2/authorize?client_id=59371302183.2082470751077&scope=&user_scope=im:history,im:read,mpim:history,mpim:read,files:read
    It is also possible to just press the following button: Add to Slack or simply press the “Add to Slack” button on the Backupery for Slack Assistant page:
  9. Example. Assume there are User1, User2, and User3 on a workspace; User1 installs Backupery for Slack Workspace app and it is necessary to export Direct Messages between User2 and User3. As User1 is unable to access the DM, it is necessary to install Backupery for Slack Assistant by User2 or User3. So User2 or User3 should follow the installation link mentioned above and install the app:
    Please note, installing Backupery for Slack Assistant app grants Backupery for Slack Workspace access to all Direct Messages and Group Direct Messages of the installing user, so a single app installation per user is enough. After installing Backupery for Slack Assistant apps by the users, open Backupery for Slack Workspace, go to the What to Export tab, and make sure the “Direct Messages” checkbox is set, as it is not checked by default.
  10. As Backupery for Slack Workspace is added to the necessary channels (if you need to export some public or private channels) and Backupery for Slack Assistants are installed by the related users (if you need to export some Direct Messages and Group Direct Messages), you are ready to go. Just press the “Export now” button and see how the app exports the data:

General Features

You can modify/add/remove backup destinations on the Settings tab:

Also, you can adjust the backup scheduler:

The application may convert all the exported data to HTML, so it could be easily reviewed with the help of any web browser:

Each backup goes into a separate directory in your backup destination:

Please refer to this article to learn more about the structure of backup produced by the application: Backupery for Slack export structure.

As always, if you have any questions, ideas, or suggestions, please contact us.

If you need any specific feature or want us to build a custom integration for your system – please let us know, we’ll be glad to help!

 

38 comments

  1. hi
    I test installed today and it is creating crazy amounts of folders – 84 in 2 hrs – none of them with .zip, but .json files that when opened don’t make sense.
    this is on OSX 10.13.4

    1. Hi Josef,
      It seems the application currently is creating a full backup of your Slack workspace. When it finishes (you’ll see “Backup complete” message), it will pack all the folders into a single zip file.

      Please let me know if you have any questions!

    1. Please see this article: How to Backup Multiple Slack Workspaces

      Hi Slackuser!
      Currently the application is supposed to backup a single slack site (workspace) only. If you need to backup several workspaces, you should install the app on several computers.
      We know it’s pretty uncomfortable, so we’ll consider adding the feature that allows to backup several workspaces.
      If you have any questions, please let me know!

    1. Hi Guillermo,

      Thank you for your question.

      Yes, the application backs up messages sent in private channels and direct messages.

      1. 1. If we are talking about Backupery for Slack Personal edition then the general rule that the app backs up the data that authenticated user (I mean the user who uses the app) is related to.
         
        For example, let’s assume there are three users on your workspace: user1, user2, and user3. If user1 uses the app then it captures the messages (including private messages) between user1 and user2, and between user1 and user3. It doesn’t capture the messages between user2 and user3 though.
         
      2. 2. If we are talking about Backupery for Workspace edition then the app backs up all the data which is available in a workspace. It means that even if a user who installed the application does not have access to some private conversations, the conversations are still exported by the application. However, to make it possible there is some extra-steps are required, read more in the user manual.

       
      Please note, it is not necessary to be admin to use the app, any user can install and use the application.

      Please let me know if you have any questions!

  2. I have 2 slack workspaces, I inadvertently signed into the channel that I did not want to back up. How do I log out and log back in to back up the the channel I need to?

      1. The Mac instructions don’t work. After I reinstall or I start the app again, it doesn’t ask me for a workspace. Instead, it just either backs up the same workspace, or complains that team name is missing (if I removed the app from the workspace). Is there someplace where the application preferences are stored that I need to delete?

        1. Hi Ante! Sorry for the late response. You are absolutely right – the Mac instructions were obsolete so I’ve just updated them. Please let me know
          if have any questions, I’m here to help!

          1. I’m using the free trial for MAC, can’t I switch accounts with the free trial for MAC?
            Does the paid Personal Edition and Workspace Edition allow for this feature to be released?

            I can’t reconfigure my workspace after reinstalling the app or deleting the settings.

          2. Hello,

            Here is how to do that if you are on Mac:

            1. Close the running app:
            2. Open the following directory:

            your_username/.local/share/google-filedatastore/BackuperyAuth

            Please note, the .local directory might be hidden on your Mac, so you should make it visible using this guide: https://ianlunn.co.uk/articles/quickly-showhide-hidden-files-mac-os-x-mavericks/

            3. Remove Google.Apis.Auth.OAuth2.Responses.TokenResponse-Slack_mainsrv file.

            4. When you start the app it will ask you again which workspace to backup:

            We’re currently working on a way to make the reset more convenient on Mac. I don’t have any exact estimations now though.

            Please let me know if you have any question, I’d be happy to help!

    1. If a team member clicks Apps on the bottom left, then the app will be displayed in a list of installed applications: View App
      Please let me know if you have any questions!

  3. Will the app back up all channels or just those that I’m part of, including private chats? I’m asking because my backup has been running for a while and was wondering if there is any way I can select specific channels and private chats to back up, instead of all of them.

    Thank you

    1. Hello!
      Thank you for your question.

      Backupery for Slack Personal backs up all the channels (private and public) which you are part of. Unfortunately, there is no way for now to select specific channels to back up. We know it’s not comfortable so we’ve placed this on our roadmap already!

      Backupery for Slack Workspace backs up all the channels (private and public) to which the app has been added, even those which you are not part of.
      Here is more information on that: https://www.backupery.com/products/backupery-for-slack/

      Please let me know if I answered your question or if you have any other questions, I’m here to help.

      1. another big vote for ability to select specific channels to back up. seeing how the last response on this was over half a year ago, how soon might we see this feature added to Backupery for Slack?

        i just bought the personal edition today hoping that this would be an included feature to discover that it unfortunately is not and thus a lot of unnecessary bandwidth is consumed for certain channels that didn’t need to be backed up as much as others

        1. Thank you for your vote! We haven’t added this feature into the app yet. However we continuously do review requested features and it’s one of the highly requested one, so it’s one of our top priorities now. I don’t have ETA for now, but I’ll notify you when it’s available!

    1. Hi Namrata!

      >> I can’t see the messages and files of private DMs.
      Do you see “Waiting for the next backup” message? I’m asking since probably the app is still backing up the data.

      >> Also, how far back does the backup go?
      It backs up everything, but please keep in mind that if you are on the Free plan on Slack, the message history is limited to 10000 the most recent messages (it’s Slack limitation, not ours).

      Please let me know if you have any questions!

  4. You mention that there is a limit for this service? What if you wish to archive it? What’s with this limit of words? How can I archive everything.

    1. Thank you for your questions. On the Free Slack plan only the most recent 10,000 messages will be viewable and searchable. You may find more details here: https://slack.com/intl/en-by/help/articles/115002422943
      So if you are on the Free plan it won’t be possible to archive more than 10.000 the most recent messages. However, you may want to upgrade to the Standard plan for 1 month, so your message history will be available.
      Please let me know if you have any questions, I’d be glad to help!

  5. Hi there,

    You mention that the app is supposed to back up everything, however after I installed the app and started the ‘backup now’ function, I only see access to the last day’s worth of messages on channels. How do I access ALL messages in the channels? Is there an additional setting I need to use?

    Thanks so much!

    1. Hi Avanti,

      The Trial app is limited to 5 private channels, 100 DMs and 100 files.
      Please also note, that on the Free Slack plan your history is limited to 10.000 the most recent messages (it’s Slack limitation, not ours).
      Would you like to try the app without the trial limitations?

      Please let me know if you have any questions, I’d be glad to help!

      1. Denis,

        Hello!
        Are there any limitations on number of messages in these 5 private channels in Trial version.

        Thanks in advance

        1. Hi Ivan!

          No, there are no any limitations on the number of messages in these 5 private channels.

          Please let me know if you have any questions.

  6. once I have exported the file of a private channel – say a chat between two people of which I am one with text messages and attached files – how can I reivew it in a format that looks like a natural conversation within slack? That’s what is truly missing. This tool produces the raw data but I can’t easily see the conversation flow or see the attachments even if the data is all buried in there somewhere.

    1. Have you checked the HTML directory? It should contain the exported data converted to HTML so you could review it using any web browser:

      I completely agree it is not as comfortable as it should be, so we’re in process of researching more convenient ways to present the exported data. I don’t have any estimations at this moment, but it’s definitely one of our top priorities now.

      Hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any questions.

  7. I’m done purchasing a license for the personal edition, but I didn’t get anything to download? What’s the next step?

  8. I have tried several times to back up with licensed Workspace Edition. There are channels that I was able to get before but are not backed up this time.
    I would like to get all channels and history backed up at once, as far as I can get with this license, is that possible?

      1. I made sure the command was entered and tried several backups, but could not get some of the private channels.Please let me know if there are any other things I should check or ways to handle this.

          1. I was not aware of that article. Thank you very much.
            If I try the method in the article,
            1. Can I use the Personal Edition and the Workspace Edition on the same device? (Do I need to uninstall the Workspace Edition?)
            2. Can I also use the license number of the Workspace Edition on the Personal Edition?

          2. 1. Can I use the Personal Edition and the Workspace Edition on the same device? (Do I need to uninstall the Workspace Edition?)

            Yes, you can use Personal and Workspace Editions on the same device. You don’t need to uninstall the Workspace Edition.

            2. Can I also use the license number of the Workspace Edition on the Personal Edition?

            Yes, in this case, please use the same license key for your Personal edition.

            Please let me know how it goes.

          3. Thank you for your answer.
            I was able to install personal edition, but it stops with the following error.
            Cursor *********** not found on sever localhost***** using connection **.

            I tried public channel / private channel / DM / uploaded file separately, and it seems to be occurring in the uploaded file. The same error occurred with other accounts.

            I’m sorry to ask again and again, but I would appreciate your answer.

          4. Hello!
            I’m sorry for the issue.

            May I ask you which version of the app do you use? I’m asking since it looks like we’ve fixed that in the latest version of the app (v. 1473).

            >> I’m sorry to ask again and again, but I would appreciate your answer.
            You don’t have to apologize, it’s our fault and my pleasure to assist you!

            By the way, would you prefer to continue the conversation here in comments or may I create a support ticket on your behalf?

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *