What and How Do You Want Backed Up?
Using tar and gzip (or bzip) are two ways to implement backup, and backup means different things according to your needs. Your SUSE system must have at least these tools (tar and gzip or bzip). tar creates the backup archive, and gzip compresses the tar archive, but these are not the only tools available to you.
If you just want to protect your daily work -- including a large directory with a couple of databases in it -- then you can use tar and gzip. You can also build incremental backups with tar. You could also make incremental backups out of this. I tend not to; I just want all my work tar'ed up and put someplace where our CA ARCserve backup agent will get it and make sure it's put into the big backup.
If you want periodic images of your disk, because you want to re-image after a disk failure, then dd or various open source projects that are smarter than dd, are the way to go.
As to restoring, that's the inverse of backing up. I'd Google this subject. There is a lot of information that could keep you reading for a long time.
Last edited by cmnorton; 12-15-2007 at 04:43 PM.
Reason: Add more info.