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Old 10-14-2003, 05:43 PM   #1
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Grand Forks, ND
Distribution: Suse/Slackware/RH
Posts: 161

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Backing up entire Linux System (partition)

Does anyone know a good way to back up my entire linux system to possibly one big tar file? (and will that work?)

I am wondering because if I need to repartition my system I don't want to mess up my os.
Old 10-14-2003, 06:59 PM   #2
Registered: Jul 2003
Location: Saskatchewan, Canada
Distribution: Mandriva Free 2006
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I suggest you check out Mondo Rescue ( ). It does bascially what you've described here. Nice thing is, if you do have a dual boot system, you can backup your Windows partition as well.

It saved me once from disaster and I found it very easy to use.
Old 10-14-2003, 08:58 PM   #3
Registered: Oct 2003
Location: Grand Forks, ND
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I don't really see a big reason for that since I can just manually have a cron job tar and zip everything up to a nfs mount by myslef (am I missing something?)
Old 10-14-2003, 09:07 PM   #4
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: New York, NY
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I think mondo creates an image of a partition so that you can bring it back to the exact state it was. When you use a tar archive, and restore from it, the physical location of the files might change; e.g. a fragmented file will no longer be fragmented - if you use tools like mondo and partimage, then fragmented file will stay fragmented - which might make a difference for some things though I can't think of anything off the top of my head.

Also, when you back up your system, you should not backup from inside a running system. The system is changing constantly and your backing up is one of the changes taking place. You should do it from another installation or a live cd like knoppix.
Old 10-14-2003, 10:01 PM   #5
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Registered: Oct 2003
Distribution: redhat
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....depends on the result you're looking for...

I prefer to make images of complete systems to avoid having to rebuild what gets broken via the file copy procedure... if you have another location (/dev/hdbx) to store an image of your entire disk then you could boot from cd and mount /dev/hdbx as /recovery and then:
dd if=/dev/hda1 of=/recovery/hda1.image with skip= & count= to create 650MB image files and you can then write them to CDs thus creating your own system restore disks.

...there's a great thread post @ which explains it in simple terms...

Last edited by maxrack; 10-15-2003 at 01:00 AM.


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