Back up an offline database

Remember to plan your backup carefully and to back up each of your databases, including the system database.


A Neo4j database can be backed up in offline mode using the dump command of neo4j-admin. If the database is hosted in a cluster, make sure that the database is stopped on the server you are connected to.


The neo4j-admin database dump command can be used for performing a full backup of an offline database. It dumps a database into a single-file archive, called <database>.dump. Alternatively, neo4j-admin database dump can stream dump to standard output, enabling the output to be piped to another program, for example to neo4j-admin database load.

The command can be run only locally from an online or an offline Neo4j DBMS.

It does not support SSL/TLS.


neo4j-admin database dump [-h] [--expand-commands]
                          [--verbose] [--overwrite-destination[=true|false]]
                          [--to-path=<path> | --to-stdout]


Dump a database into a single-file archive. The archive can be used by the load command. <to-path> should be a directory (in which case a file called <database>.dump will be created), or --to-stdout can be supplied to use standard output. If neither --to-path or --to-stdout is supplied server.directories.dumps.root setting will be used as a destination. It is not possible to dump a database that is mounted in a running Neo4j server.


Table 1. neo4j-admin database dump parameters
Parameter Description


Name of the database to dump. Can contain * and ? for globbing. Note that * and ? have special meaning in some shells and might need to be escaped or used with quotes.


The neo4j-admin database dump command has the following options:

Table 2. neo4j-admin database dump options
Option Description Default


Configuration file with additional configuration.


Allow command expansion in config value evaluation.

-h, --help

Show this help message and exit.


Overwrite any existing dump file in the destination folder.



Destination folder of a database dump.


Use standard output as the destination for the database dump.


Enable verbose output.


The following is an example of how to create a dump of the default database neo4j using the neo4j-admin database dump command. The target directory /dumps/neo4j must exist before running the command and the database must be offline.

bin/neo4j-admin database dump <database> --to-path=/full/path/to/dumps/

The command creates a file called <database>.dump where <database> is the database specified in the command.

neo4j-admin database dump cannot be applied to Composite databases. It must be run directly on the databases that are associated with that Composite database.