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I'm seeking information on a global backup solution for my multi-OS, multi-disk system. I need something that is EASY, reliable, and fast, with the ability to image entire partitions (NTFS, FAT, ext2-3, and Reiser file systems) and compress them to manageable sizes to store on a large (50Gig) archive partition on one of drives with later transfer to DVD.
A couple folks here and elsewhere have recommended the following to me:
For backup I create my own backup script using tar. I can also backup Windows folders this way by mounting them first. For cloning I use a combination of ssh, dd and gzip after booting with a Knoppix CD.
I found out that for Linux you really don't have to clone a hard disk. All you have to do to recover is reinstall the OS with all necessary programs then restore the configuration files. That's why it's always a good idea to keep a log of programs setup for a production server. It's not in Windows where the registry makes it impossible to restore unless you use ghost.
Backups and restores are very easy in Linux; and with ssh, dd and gzip you can also clone a Windows disk remotely. That's one of the things I love about administering even Windows networks preferebly with Linux.