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Delete or disable database snapshots from an active base?

Topic Labels: Admin Data
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Nicole_Lopez
6 - Interface Innovator
6 - Interface Innovator

Would it be possible to disable database snapshots, delete/clear out database snapshots, or configure snapshots to ignore specific fields?

The way database snapshots currently function undermine any meaningful data deletion or redaction strategy for an active base. Our organization uses an automation to redact certain fields in our database for any record over X days/months old. While this automation cosmetically redacts the data, the original, pre-redacted data is preserved in the database snapshots. As database snapshots are not able to be deleted separately from the base they're attached to, the only way to ensure that redacted information is not preserved is to duplicate and then delete the database.

While a workaround exists (duplication+deletion), it's tedious, creates broken links, and makes operationalizing a data retention policy difficult. As a base admin, I would like to be able to either disable database snapshots, exclude certain fields from snapshot functionality, or delete/clear snapshots for an active base.

2 Replies 2

Airtable is specifically designed to ensure that people never lose important data, so there is no built-in way to do what you want to do. You might want to email support@airtable.com to submit this as a feature request.

Note that if you use the "duplicate & delete" workaround that you mentioned, there will be another problem as well: Any external automations & integrations that you have setup will break as well.

Ironically, most people would actually prefer for Airtable to make MORE predictable & consistent backups, because the current backup system is sporadic & unpredictable. (People can always turn to On2Air Backups or ProBackup to get more consistent Airtable backups.) 

But if you're looking for an enterprise-level database system that can do what you want in terms of backup control, I would highly recommend looking at Claris FileMaker. I was a FileMaker developer for 30 years before becoming an Airtable consultant in 2018, so if you need a referral to some fantastic FileMaker developers, feel free to reach out to me at my website: Airtable Consultant — ScottWorld

Lisa_Jervis
5 - Automation Enthusiast
5 - Automation Enthusiast

I strongly agree with this! I have many clients who share this need for data deletion and Airtable would otherwise be a great solution for them but they have to rule it out so that they can sanitize their data effectively.