Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Tue Dec 20, 2011 1:13 pm

Oh my god...i knew the Live CD is Ubuntu based, but with a complete system de locale only on it for just one program,
that's too much :roll: If i would have faster internet i would dl it as well as SystemRescueCD to take a look at them. But with
47kb/s max dl speed i only dl what really is necessary. Ok i'll search the net for an alternative. As far as i remember there must
be a howto in the ocean of the net for how to create an own qt4-fsa Live CD, if i shouldn't find an alternative.

@ukbrian, thanks for your interest and reporting your test. Backup ntfs partitions with qt4-fsa is not safe, that's reported
already. I never tried to restore a qt4-fsa clone to a different partition, i only read it should work. Please let us know what
happens, if you change UUID and label for the restored partition. Any help with the HowTo is appreciated :)
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby ukbrian on Tue Dec 20, 2011 2:53 pm

My changing the UUID, LABEL values in the text file had no effect.
I guess when fsarchiver deleted/creates the new partition it gets the UUID/LABEL values from inside the .fsa file, pity, but maybe that could be changed to read the values in the text file
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Tue Dec 20, 2011 3:47 pm

Brian, seems like you have found another weak point of the program :lol: so far, there is no real good documentation available
for this. The only reference i have is not precise in this point. It only says it's possible to restore on any partition.
- http://wiki.ubuntuusers.de/qt4-fsarchiver - it's the point "Sicherung wiederherstellen" on that site. I'll search the forums of
the wiki, maybe there is an answer. If not, i'll ask for it.

With the Live CD german only, there is no other available. There must be a way to have it in english. It's described, it comes
with de, en, ru locales. I'll load it down tomorrow and if it is like that, i write an instruction how to change locales.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby xircon on Tue Dec 20, 2011 4:06 pm

Been playing with the live CD:

Open dash type lang, pick the one that looks like the language options (blue icon began with an "S"), drag english to the top of the list, but qt4-fs is still in german and so are the menus. I couldn't get a wireless connection, so couldn't take screenshots.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:47 pm

Steve, do you have informations at which date the ISO was offered? I guess there is the same version of qt4-fsa on it which
i have and it's german only.

Sichern und Wiederherstellen von Partitionen, Verzeichnissen und MBR.
Copyright (C) 2008-2011 Francois Dupoux, Hihin Ruslan, Dieter Baum.
All rights reserved.
Version 0.6.12-8, 1.Juli 2011


With the UUID/Label stuff, it is like it is. A clone restored to another partition than it was backed up from, gets the
UUID/Label from the origin partition.

I found a discussion thread on ubuntuusers.de where one of the developers writes, it takes such a long time to make qt4-fsa ready
for professional use, because they have a lot of dependency trouble. For now the best way to use it is having two Linux systems.
Using the Live CD is only a sprag. Let's see, what we can make with the sprag. I studied remastersys a little bit, which i never
used. But that would be a January project.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby xircon on Tue Dec 20, 2011 5:56 pm

It was the Oneiric version 6.12-10, but I junked it.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby viking777 on Wed Dec 21, 2011 5:43 am

Code: Select all
it takes such a long time to make qt4-fsa ready
for professional use, because they have a lot of dependency trouble


Having installed from source on two different non-debian distributions I can certainly vouch for that :lol: I am sure it took me an hour or more on each distro just locating the dependencies it has (there are about a dozen), never mind installing them, not at all helped by the fact that every distro calls every dependency by a different name, or includes it with a different package :evil:

For example:
libqt4-devel in one distro is PyQt4-devel in another
lzo-devel in one distro is liblzma-devel in another
libgcrypt-devel in one distro is libgcryptui-devel in another
e2fsprogs-devel in one distro is libext2fs-devel in another
btrfsprogs in one distro is btrfs-progs in another
qmake in one distro is qmake-qt4 in another

And those are just the differences between Pclos and Fedora, in Debian based distro the names are completely different again.

The pain was worth it though, as I predicted in a previous post, whereas I used to back up once a week with Clonezilla. I am now doing so whenever I make a major change to any of the distros I run because it is so easy to do it with this program.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Wed Dec 21, 2011 8:10 am

I am now doing so whenever I make a major change to any of the distros I run because it is so easy to do it with this program.


Yes, i'm doing the same with it. Sometimes step by step changes and backup between the steps.

Well, DownThemAll was busy last night, i have SystemRescueCD v. 2.4.1 and no fsarchiver on it. My impression, not useable for
me. I prefer Parted Magic.

And i have qt4-fsa Live CD, maverick v. 0.6.12-10, dated 2011-12-12. It's useable, qt4-fsa can be started from the desktop icon,
the terminal pops up and the password to put in is "ubuntu". To change the language go to Einstellungen -> Basiseinstellungen
-> Sprache and choose Englisch. Then hit the buttons "Einstellungen speichern" -> "Beenden" and restart qt4 to make en effective.
That's all if you only want to use qt4.

I write an instruction later today, how it works to change locales for the whole system.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby viking777 on Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:08 pm

I write an instruction later today, how it works to change locales for the whole system.


I tell you what Gerd, I wouldn't bother. Because it is a live medium any changes that you make will only last for the session that you are in, even the ones you have already detailed. They certainly work, but as soon as you reboot they are lost so this is really not an answer for non-German speakers, they would have to remember the instructions you gave every time they used the program from the live medium. Some people might, but I know I won't! Possibly it might work on a usbkey install with 'persistence' but I haven't made one of those so I can't use that method (even if I knew how to) and it certainly isn't going to work on a cd.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Wed Dec 21, 2011 12:59 pm

The work is already done Viking. I just finished it. Who wants to use the Live CD and is practically assessed, changes
the language of qt4 only in few steps.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby ukbrian on Wed Dec 21, 2011 9:48 pm

The ability to clone a partition is a seperate issue but most partition backup software goes that way and
it would be more versatile if you could change the UUID's on a restore/clone operation .

I installed fsarchiver in a SalineOS Xfce Squeeze based install and then remastersysed it and burnt an iso which runs fsarchiver in the live dvd
is there any difference between that and your live fsarchiver iso?
I studied remastersys a little bit, which i never
used. But that would be a January project.
The developer of SalineOS, Anthony Nordquist, has rewriten the remastersys installer and you can choose which drive's MBR to add grub to as with the original script it just added grub to the sda MBR with no choice, plus other tweaks.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:45 am

When i mentioned remastersys, it was only a thought for those who don't speak german to create an own Live CD, if the
by sourceforge offered Ubuntu CD should be unusable because of the language. And i thought of to try it myself. But it makes
no sense for me, because i have three systems with qt4-fsa installed. Sure is, you can use each Ubuntu or Debian based distro,
in order to create an own Live CD with qt4-fsa on it.

Whith the UUID stuff i found out, it's possible to edit the second window that pops up when a backup session is started. You can
define the UUID and Label there. I didn't try if it works, but maybe it's worth an attempt.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby ukbrian on Thu Dec 22, 2011 4:42 pm

When i mentioned remastersys,
understood, if you do put an rescue iso together I have a script called grub-doctor from the saline dev that would be worth adding, it must only be run from a live cd.
it's possible to edit the second window that pops up when a backup session is started. You can
define the UUID and Label there
:D You have confirmed that it's possible to customize those values when you do a restore, that's good news, I'll give it a go later.

Would it be worthwhile to auto backup the target partitions drive MBR and then a yes/no to restore the MBR when you do a restore?

A feature in macrium that I used a lot was that when you made a backup it created a definition file in a folder in a central location, so that folder contained all the backup profiles you had used so you just picked one and off it went.

When you right click a profile one of the options is to create a desktop shortcut to autorun that profile in the background.
When I put a windows machine together for someone I always do this so with 2 clicks on an icon and no decisions/screens to go through they have a date stamped backup.

I would think it simple for fsarchiver to create a .desktop screen launcher to do the same as you just pass parameters to the qt4-fsarchiver I think. :oops:

Small suggestion about the filenames of the backups created, it would be better if the date stamp at the end of the file name was in YYYY-MM-DD-HH-mm format instead of saline-ssd-19-12-2011.fsa which is DD-MM-YYYY which don't sort very well in thunar.

You could also use the OS name or UUID/Label for the start of the file name and use that as the default file name

Better to use "YYYY-MM-DD-HH-mm-user note" it sorts better if you date stamp first part of file name even when the user changes their bit.

I do think that to be able to easily backup partitions is an essential app on any system and a qt4-fsarchiver.iso would mean windows users can backup their machines. so a simple, intuitive gui is very important, if it's simple folk use it. :D

I'm rambling on, sorry :D
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby xircon on Thu Dec 22, 2011 5:30 pm

Interesting idea, make our own backup/restore/recovery CD. It is also a good learning exercise. Even if only half a dozen of us used it, it would be a handy tool.

I tried remastersys a while back and made a DVD of my (during a brief flirtation with) Ubuntu system, but it was huge.

Can you create live CDs in vbox?
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Thu Dec 22, 2011 6:56 pm

Brian, you know much more about backup/backuptools than me :) About three years ago i left Windows, which i never
backed up, behind me. I was too stupid for it. Then started with Ubuntu, Mint Gloria, Helena. I never backed up them and
never broke them except ubu in the first weeks. Install, break, reinstall was a good learning exercise at the beginning.

When LMDE was offered, i was very interested to it, installed it. As long as testing was freezed, i never backed up. But when
the wheezy update flood came in, i at once installed qt4-fsa. Since then it does what i want, save my partitions, MBR, restore
them with few klicks :D

A week ago Steve asked me, whether i could write a quick and dirty qt4-fsa HowTo. I said yes i can and now we have a project :lol:
What about founding a group in order to create a qt4-fsa/rescue Live CD based on LMDE Xfce for LMDE users :?:
Last edited by Gerd50 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:33 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby xircon on Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:18 pm

I am in. I am just trying to create a debian netinst vbox, but it is crawling, do not know what is wrong, machine is unusable, posting this from my phone.

:Edit: Appears Vbox has a bug making it unusable on Sandybridge chipsets. ho hum. Uninstalled.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby viking777 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 5:43 am

xircon wrote:Interesting idea, make our own backup/restore/recovery CD. It is also a good learning exercise. Even if only half a dozen of us used it, it would be a handy tool.

I tried remastersys a while back and made a DVD of my (during a brief flirtation with) Ubuntu system, but it was huge.

Can you create live CDs in vbox?


On this subject I had an idea that was similar to this, but not quite the same, my idea was not so ambitious as what is proposed here. What I was going to try was this (I have no idea if it would work).

Use Gerd's instructions to change the localisation of the existing qt4-fsarchiver live medium and having done that use its ability to take 'live' images to make an image of itself to some other partition. Then boot back into whichever distro you are running and use qt4-fsarchiver from there to restore the image to the original device (obviously this would need to be a usbkey or a cd rw not a plain cd). It might not boot straight away, but it may be possible to solve that with syslinux.

The reason I haven't tried this is because sadly, Gerd's description of how to change the localisation of the Ubuntu part of the live cd are based on the Maverick version and I have the Oneiric version, and the procedure there is so different from the Maverick version that I have not succeeded in performing the language change yet. The instructions for archiver itself are still correct, but the instructions for Ubuntu are very different. I managed to get as far as the logout/login part (although I may have made some wrong choices along the way I don't know) but after logging in again I am presented with another dialog box full of file paths, checkboxes, options, buttons and an explanation panel (presumably how to use it) - all written in German! I had a couple of stabs at setting it up but nothing changed, so I didn't proceed with my 'idea'. So Gerd, I suggest you make a note on your how-to that the Ubuntu localisation instructions are for the Maverick version and don't work on the Oneiric one.

Edit. For another Idea on this maybe have a look here http://partedmagic.com/doku.php?id=how_ ... e_iso_file and here http://partedmagic.com/doku.php?id=adding_programs . I haven't tried this either.
Last edited by viking777 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 7:29 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby Gerd50 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 6:45 am

I thought, for the Oneiric version the way to change language should be nearly similar as for the Maverick v.
That's another surprise for me, it is not :roll: ...ok, i load down the Oneiric v. and write an instruction for it too.
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby viking777 on Fri Dec 23, 2011 7:21 am

Gerd50 wrote:I thought, for the Oneiric version the way to change language should be nearly similar as for the Maverick v.
That's another surprise for me, it is not :roll: ...ok, i load down the Oneiric v. and write an instruction for it too.


Gerd, are you sure you want to do that?

The fact that the changes wont 'stick' on a live medium really means that for most people changing the language is a waste of time anyway, I wont do it myself unless I find a way to make the changes permanent.

Its up to you of course, but please don't do it just for my sake - I am very happy with what you have done thus far and a simple warning on your initial post is really all I consider to be necessary, I am only thinking of your slow download connection and the work you have put in already :)
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Re: Backup/Restore Partitions with qt4-fsarchiver HowTo

Postby ukbrian on Fri Dec 23, 2011 9:44 am

Brian, you know much more about backup/backuptools than me :) About three years ago i left Windows, which i never
backed up, behind me. I was too stupid for it. Then started with Ubuntu, Mint Gloria, Helena. I never backed up them and
never broke them except ubu in the first weeks. Install, break, reinstall was a good learning exercise at the beginning.
Similar story with me but it was the need to backup the windows system that drove me.
When LMDE was offered, i was very interested to it, installed it. As long as testing was freezed, i never backed up. But when
the wheezy update flood came in, i at once installed qt4-fsa. Since then it does what i want, save my partitions, MBR, restore
them with few klicks :D
If it's been reliably doing everything you need in a simple way my idea of extending it to clone drives might be pointless. :lol:
I wasn't aware that it backs up the drives MBR.
A week ago Steve asked me, whether i could write a quick and dirty qt4-fsa HowTo. I said yes i can and now we have a project :lol:
Is Steve the developer and is he activly developing qt4-archiver?
I make videos showing folk how to to use apps so I'll put a video together once I familiarize myself with the software.
Regarding the text based howto would it make sense to create the howto as a web page so you can access it from within qt4-fsarchiver? I'll have a play later using some pictures with your text along side. :lol:
What about founding a group in order to create a qt4-fsa/rescue Live CD based on LMDE Xfce for LMDE users :?:
Bit out of my depth technically but does a rescue live CD need to be based on LMDE? would it be better to use a Squeeze(stable) base?

Off to have a play with qt4-archiver
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