Problems with the Timeslips 2017 scheduled backup utility led me to research the Firebird command line utility, GBAK.EXE, that is included with the Timeslips 2017 installation. It appears that this utility can run successfully without exclusive access to the database. According to the GBAK documentation:
"Gbak creates a consistent backup of the database by starting a transaction that spans the backup period. When the backup is complete, the transaction is ended and this means that the backup process can be run while users are working in the database. However, any transactions started after the backup process begins will not have any of the changed data written to the backup file. The backup will represent a copy of the entire database at the moment the backup began."
Since it is often difficult to obtain exclusive access to the Timeslips database at a site with many active users, removing this constraint from the backup process would result in more frequent backups and improve chances of successful recovery from database problems.
I have successfully tested using GBAK in a Windows batch file to run a scheduled backup of a Timeslips 2017 database. The .bat file is excuted by the Windows server task scheduler. (Before running GBAK, the FIREBIRD.MSG file must be copied to the parent folder of the server Timeslips 2017 folder.) Here is a sample .bat file:
:: Timeslips Rotating 7 Day Firebird database backup procedure
gbak -v -t -user SYSDBA -password "masterkey" -y D:\TSBackup\%date:~0,3%FBLog.txt "C:\ProgramData\Sage\Timeslips\Databases\amicusc.fdb" D:\TSBackup\%date:~0,3%.tbu
The Firebird documentation available through the URL above explains the function of the GBAK option switches. The automatic naming of the daily backup and log files is accomplished through Windows batch file features.