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Manual Backups in Linux, DD

Oct 15, 2010, 21:04 (1 Talkback[s])


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"There are several different ways to make backups of data for any operating system. In the "glory days" of UNIX people would usually write a cron job that would create a Tape ARchive of their system and write that TAR to a tape drive. Well, those days are long gone, as are those scripts. What is here? DD. DD is very powerful and rather under appreciated tool. Do note that dd does NOT have a progress indicator. As such, I recommend that you apt-get install pv.

"So, a simple backup?

#dd if=/dev/sdX | pv | dd of=/dev/sdY

"The above assumes that you have access to another hard disc of the exact same make, and that you wish to mirror your drive in use onto the other drive (pv is just the progress indicator). Not your cup of tea? Ok. Now, this is the command I use for backup. It's faster than bit by bit, though not quite as safe. It also will not quit when it encounters a disc error. I compresses your output, and instead of outputting to a disc, it will output to a file. The restore on this one is pretty much the same."

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