[Nottingham] Backups: How do you do yours?

Simon Sleaford simon.sleaford at gmail.com
Wed Mar 16 09:14:44 UTC 2011

Hello all

I've been asked to look at backing up one Windows machines to another but
due to financial constraints with my employer we're not going to be getting
any new software to help out. We were previously using Symantec Backup Exec
but it seems it cannot handle large volumes such as the amounts we need to
backup (~1.5 terabytes.) Trying to do so has resulted in very hit and miss
integrity of backups with about 1 in 3 files being corrupt and therefore

I'd really like to be able to use a Linux machine to do backup the data if I
can. I've created a Debian virtual machine, mounted the two filesystems and
used a simple *rsync -a /path/to/source /path/to/destination *command and
was pleased with the amount of time it took. I'd like to make it a bit more
efficient if I can though so I've created added some commands into a cron
file. Here are the contents of the file:

15 17 * * * rsync -a /san1/data /nas1/backups/san1/rsync/daily
00 19 * * 5 rsync -a /nas1/backups/rsync/daily /nas1/backups/rsync/weekly
01 00 1 * * tar -cjf /nas1/backups/san1/rsync/monthly/monthly-`date
+%d.%m.%Y.`tar.bz2 /nas1/backups/san1/rsync/daily

What I wanted to do was created a rotating backup system, backing up daily,
writing the latest daily backup to a weekly folder once a week. Finally,
once a month, write a backup to a tar.bz2 file to be written to tape.

I'm still very much in the learning about Linux stage so I was hoping for a
few pointers if possible. I suppose I should be change this a bit to write a
log file, is it as easy as appending *>> logfile.txt *to the end of each
Also, seeing as the backups take place internally is there any need to worry
about encryption?

Any suggestions gladly received.


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