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Backup question

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Last response: in Linux/Free BSD
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February 3, 2011 4:23:08 PM

I've been a DOS/Windows guy for 20 years, and recently became a SW test lab helper. My company uses CentOS for a lot, so I've become familiar with it, but obviously not as comfortable as I am with Windows. I can appreciate how flexible it is, and I'm looking at using it at home. Here's what I have planned:

machine: Core 2 Duo E8400, 8GB DDR2, 60GB SSD OS drive, ATI 4650 video card, other storage is flexible (I have 3 1TB drives and 4 750GB drives around that can be used in this machine.)
uses: HTPC, Network Storage, VMWare server host: SMTP, FTP server, and Web server virtual machines

I've figured out how to do much of this, but I haven't figured out how to do backups in Linux. I've been spoiled with Windows, with the built in backup system so simple to use. I find myself overwhelmed with the array of backup software, and unable to determine which to use. none of them seem to do everything I need them to do, but some come close, I think. I'm hoping someone here can help me out in figuring out which program to use and how to use it.

Here is what I need the backup software to do:
1. scheduled unattended backups, with alerts if the backups fail
2. a weekly full backup with incremental every 12 hours
3. removing the old backups when the new full backup runs, I would prefer to keep 2 weeks of backups, but that's not necessary
4. backing up the network share as well as the virtual machines, if possible.
5. a GUI would be preferable, since my arthritic fingers don't always do as I want them to do. I typo things a lot, and the label worn off my backspace can attest to that.
6. free would be best :) 

Any suggestions?

More about : backup question

February 3, 2011 4:31:48 PM

Have a look at BackupPC. I use it on a central server to back up a few machines, but you could use it on jsut the one machine.
February 3, 2011 5:59:09 PM

just tried it out. it's difficult to install, and apparently impossible to run. it says "The installation contains an init.d backuppc script that can be copied to /etc/init.d so that BackupPC can auto-start on boot. See init.d/README for further instructions." but I can't find this script anywhere. I can't even find an "init.d" folder in the installer folder or the installed folder.

The instructions are incomplete and frustrating. they keep saying things that aren't true, such as mentioning running files that don't exist.
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February 3, 2011 6:21:04 PM

Strange. Where did you get it from? I've just downloaded the latest version from SourceForge and there's certainly an init.d folder containing startup scripts for Linux, FreeBSD, Solaris, etc.

Did you get it via your system's package manager? In that case it would have installed the startup script for you.

Have a look at this article which gives details of 21 backup solutions for Linux. You might find one there that suits you.
February 3, 2011 6:22:50 PM

I got it through SourceForge.
February 3, 2011 6:24:41 PM

Well, I can assure you that there is an init.d folder containing the startup scripts.

See the edit to my previous post where I've given a link to an article on backup solutions.
February 3, 2011 9:00:14 PM

There's no GUI for it, but rsync + cron will do the job you want. If you're strong in DOS the syntax will be very straightforward.

Rsync will do the sync for you.

Cron will handle the automation.

99.99% chance you've already got them installed.
February 4, 2011 5:01:13 AM

Adding to wombat_tg -- suggest you learn PERL as it is not that difficult and will allow much customization such as you describe via scripts written yourself. Welcome to Linux and have fun!
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