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numtre 01-01-2009 03:35 PM

Backup question
 
Hello
I'm pretty new to Linux, I've been using it for a couple of months not (perhaps less)
and was wondering whats the best backup solution

I mean, if I get a crash, I dont want to only recover my documents, but also my settings and programs
Is this possible?

I am coming from Apple systems and they have an elegant solution in time machine, but even without it I knew what to backup to have my system as it was before

Any help is MUCH apreciated as right now this is my major concern when using Linux

Many thx and long live free software

aleX

fuzzyworm 01-01-2009 03:55 PM

I have just installed Areca on my Windows Vista machine, it is a platform independent (Java based) backup solution. I haven't (yet) tried the Linux version, but fully intend to. It works by doing incremental backups of specified folders, which you can then schedule using cron.

As for exactly which files to backup, that would depend entirely on your system.

If you're using all open source/free software, then you needn't backup the programs themselves, but to save time on downloading, it may be worth your while to backup the install files, in case you have to reformat your HDD or something.

Most of your settings are probably contained within your home folder, though you may have customised some more general things. In most systems that I have worked with, any settings not contained in your home folder are contained in files in a folder called "/etc".

Since Linux (and also Mac, I believe) uses config files in preference to a central registry, backing up these settings is a simple matter of backing up the relevant files. Make sure you do back up your entire home folder though!

Also, though I haven't checked it out other than a passing glance, there is "flyback" available from Google Code:
http://code.google.com/p/flyback/
This is modelled on Time Machine and the screenshots look pretty

Hope this helps.

Also, in future posts, it would be worth mentioning, amongst other things, which distribution (distro) you are using, as it will help people to work out the best solution to your problem.

For example, if you are using Ubuntu or Debian, then the program downloads will be in one specific place (usually "/var/cache/apt/archives").

Brian1 01-01-2009 04:24 PM

Well I have a USB drive that I use ghost for linux live cd to mirror the drive. I do it once a month at night. It is the same interface as the computer harddrive so if the drive does crash I can remove the one from the USB case and install in machine. Up and going in a few minutes. Then I have a second hard drive in the system where I occasionally copy data over the monthly period. I have a cron that will copy my home directory and /etc directory. This is where most configuration files will pertain to a system. Other data like songs and movies are backed up on another usb drive that is attached to another machine. My firefox bookmarks and thunderbird email is copied daily as well. Acts as NAS for me. Backup is very crude but works for me. But the above post would be a good one for backup.

Brian

numtre 01-06-2009 01:33 PM

I'm clearly a bit confused about what is where
See I come from Mac OS X and I'm now using ubuntu quite smoothly

Some things I don't understand though, like the location of my settings. Where are they exacly? On a mac they are in Library/Preferences, so if I want to backup an app and its settings i generally just need that... where are the apps settings on linux?

I need a guide explaining me what goes where :D any help/link is appreciated

as for the backup thing, after having a browse on the net, I think I will go for rsync, I just need to understand what I need to backup beside my home folder then I'm good to go

Thx a lot!

jailbait 01-06-2009 02:47 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by numtre (Post 3399103)

Some things I don't understand though, like the location of my settings. Where are they exacly? On a mac they are in Library/Preferences, so if I want to backup an app and its settings i generally just need that... where are the apps settings on linux?

as for the backup thing, after having a browse on the net, I think I will go for rsync, I just need to understand what I need to backup beside my home folder then I'm good to go

Per user application settings are in /home. System wide settings for both applications and the system are usually in /etc.

I recommend that you back up your entire system instead of guessing which bits and pieces you might need to restore in the future. If you back up everything with the rsynch -a option then the first backup will copy everything. Subsequent backups will only copy files which have been updated since the previous backup.

---------------------
Steve Stites

farslayer 01-06-2009 03:09 PM

in addition to flyback there is Ubuntu's Time Vault also modeled after Time machine

https://wiki.ubuntu.com/TimeVault

numtre 01-07-2009 06:24 PM

In the end Im going to use remastersys to have a nice image of my stable system

i could do more in the future if i feel i need it

then i would only backup my home using rsync

thanks everyone

PS: we have to give it to apple when it comes to timemachine, it's brilliant although in the end remastersys+rsync is more flexible as i can get an image of my stable system, and go back to it if needed. I cant do this with time machine, as if i got a crash i am stuck with the latest version of my system if i remember correctly.


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