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you may need to use the exclude option to exclude /sys /dev
tar cvzpf /path/to/backup.tar.gz --exclude=/vz/root/101/sys --exclude=/vz/root/101/dev /vz/root/101/*
c create archive
z filter through gunzip for compressing you can use j option for bzip
p tell tar to preserve files permissions
f your backup file /path/to/backup.tar.gz
--exclude tells tar to not backup these directories
It should backup with it still running. While restoring your backup you would have to shut your vps down
Yes it is. Sorry I forgot about /proc. Exclude it also. Just remember when you restore your backup, you will have to create the /proc, /dev, and /sys or any other file you may have excluded such as /mnt or /media.