DO THIS NOW: Backup your Ubiquiti configuration

If you’re using Ubiquiti’s Unifi access points, you know that there’s a cute little desktop app called Unifi which makes it super easy to manage all of your access points at once. It’s great, except there is this one weird thing… if you install it from scratch and you already have Unifi access points set up, it’s really hard if not impossible to do anything without completely reconfiguring the access points. This can be a real drag if you only need to make a tiny change and you recently changed PCs.

There’s a little tool called “Unifi-Discover” which helps the process, and I’ll admit that it’s easier than it used to be. However, what would be VERY easy (and Ubiquiti) does not do this) would be if the access points themselves actually backed up the full network configuration so it could be easily migrated to a new computer.

So, here’s what you have to do instead. I recommend you stop what you’re doing and as long as you’re currently able to run Unifi from the computer you’re using. If you’ve recently updated to Windows 10, you’ll probably have to update to the latest version.)

Once you have the Unifi software running and launched in a web browser, locate the Settings button at the lower left and click or tap it.

Then, Select Maintenance and under “SERVICES” tap or click on DOWNLOAD BACKUP SETTINGS. You’ll get a little file named for the version of the software you’re using (at this time, it would be called 4.7.6.unf). This is the complete backup of all the setups contained in your network. Put it on a flash drive or upload it to a secure location or whatever works for you.

If you ever need to reinstall the Unifi software on another computer, you can restore these settings and there are just a couple of button pushes you’ll need to completely adopt the new computer as the primary controller. This can be a ton easier than setting your network up from scratch.

This article was inspired by real events. That’s right, I had to set up my network from scratch to make one tiny change. I suffered so you don’t have to.