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Old 01-01-2006, 07:09 PM   #1
morrolan
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Registered: Sep 2003
Location: Manchester UK
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Using TAR to backup /


Hi all,
I probably can't see the wood for the trees at the moment and I'm sure I've missed something, but I am trying to backup my / (i.e. everything) using TAR to an external HDD within a script.

I can get TAR to copy, but I can't seem to get the syntax correct when I am telling it to exclude certain dirs.

If I don't exclude the dir that the external HDD is mounted at, it will end up backing up my backup drive too.

Code:
tar -zcvpf /media/DWORKIN/ubuntu_backup-`date '+%d-%B-%Y'`.tar.gz
--exclude=/media --exclude=/proc .
Where DWORKIN is the external HDD.

Any attempt to exclude a directory fails, as when I watch the files go by (verbose output) it starts backing up /media/DWORKIN too.

It also doesn't work as --exclude=media. I've read the man page and "tar --help" but all it says it that
Quote:
--exclude=PATTERN .............exclude files, given as a PATTERN
What it doesn't do is explain what the pattern of PATTERN is!

Also, googling didn't help in this instance.

Many thanks in advance,

Last edited by morrolan; 01-01-2006 at 07:10 PM.
 
Old 01-01-2006, 08:03 PM   #2
jglen490
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What you have right now for your exclude phrase is:
Quote:
--exclude=/media --exclude=/proc
I'm thinking that the file name pattern should be:
Quote:
--exclude=/media/* --exclude=/proc/*
While it's true that a directory is sort of a file, the actual files that the PATTERN looks for is files within a directory. I think that by adding something to indicate files, all in this case, within a directory that are to be excluded, you should have better luck.
 
Old 01-01-2006, 09:42 PM   #3
markir
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Registered: Jan 2003
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Strange - works for me using tar 1.15.1 (simple test example):

$ cd /tmp/testdir
$ ls
dir1 dir2 dir3
$ tar -zcvpf dir3/dirs.tar.gz --exclude=dir2 --exclude=dir3 .
./
./dir1/
./dir1/file0
./dir1/file1
./dir1/file2
./dir1/file3
./dir1/file4

Are you sure that your /media/DWORKIN is not symlinked from somewhere else under / ?

regards

Mark
 
Old 01-02-2006, 12:09 AM   #4
jrdioko
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Not to change the subject, but dar works great for that kind of thing. The settings seem very user-friendly and I've been using it successfully for a while now. Anyway, tar should work fine, but dar seems to be a better system for major system-wide backups like that.
 
Old 01-02-2006, 03:08 AM   #5
grishnak
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Registered: Jul 2004
Location: Australia
Distribution: Kubuntu 5.10
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I have been using ESR backup quite sucessfully for backup of 4 computers to a remote HDD. It is very easy to setup and my be what your looking for. Works for one or many computers!

www.shawnscott.net/esr/

Last edited by grishnak; 01-02-2006 at 03:14 AM.
 
Old 01-02-2006, 03:14 AM   #6
alizard
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My advice is don't bother with tar.

Use rsync if you're simply mirroring a drive, and dar as your solution if you want to back up compressed image files (BTW, this backs up files individually within a volume, so one disk error means ONE problem file, not a stack of them). I do both regularly (rsync every couple of days, dar monthly), and once I got the setup debugged, I haven't had problems.

For details, go to my article:
http://www.linuxpipeline.com/shared/...leId=171200965

In fact, my backup methods as described will even automatically back up the /boot partition. Not an issue for most people, but if you have had occasion to make changes, you'll appreciate this. I say methods because it'll walk you through both rsync to a drive mirror and dar to a stack of DVD-Rs.
 
Old 01-02-2006, 04:02 AM   #7
tlu
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You need to write '--exclude=./media/*' '--exclude=./proc/*'
because tar backs up ".", so the pathes it sees are

./
./media
./media/some_file

and so on.

I would also recommend to exclude

/dev/pts/* (pseudo terminal devices),
/dev/shm/* (shared-memory based RAM disk)
/sys/* (sysfs, a bit like /proc).

Hth,
Torsten
 
Old 01-03-2006, 02:44 PM   #8
RWallett
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You could also create a file somewhere on your machine called "backup.excludes", which contains "/proc", "/dev", or whatever you want to exclude, and then use the flag "--exclude-from /somedir/backup.excludes". I've been successful with that syntax, even though, like you, I've never had any luck using "--exclude".
 
Old 01-04-2006, 05:03 AM   #9
morrolan
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I've resolved it now, it turns out I was missing the "/" to tell it to backup the root directory - I placed a / after the filename and before the excludes and it worked fine.

Many Thanks all - I will be looking into RSYNC now, but the backup was a matter of urgency and I didn't have time to look into another program in the timeframe, hence why I used TAR.
 
  


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