Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

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WharfRat
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by WharfRat »

goog64,

I know there's a well of good advice here, but this backup is very simple with rsync. I've done it plenty of times.

The one thing you might want to do first is use the backup tool (mintbackup) to backup your software selections. It will create a list that you can later use to reinstall the applications with mintbackup restore option.

You will only have to replace mount /dev/???? /mnt/target with the actual device assignment of your external drive e.g. /dev/sdb1. Also if it isn't formated ext3 or ext4 then format it with

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sudo mkfs.ext3 /dev/???
again using the correct device.

To backup your system:

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sudo -i

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mkdir /mnt/source
mkdir /mnt/target

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mount /dev/sda1 /mnt/source
mount /dev/???? /mnt/target

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rsync -aiuh  --exclude={'/proc','/dev','/media','/mnt','/sys','/tmp'}  /mnt/source/ /mnt/target/
After you check /mnt/target then

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umount -l /mnt/source
umount -l /mnt/target
Good luck
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goog64
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by goog64 »

gold_finger wrote:
goog64 wrote:I have copied my Home folder to the 250GB drive and I also used "redobackup" to make a backup (someone said it was an "image"?).
.......check to make sure that your Firefox profile and your VirtualBox VMs did get copied over[/u]. Open file manager and navigate to where you saved your home folder on the external drive. In same location where you see the folders "Documents", "Music", "Pictures", etc. there should be one called "VirtualBox VMs" (or something similar)..........Then look for a folder beginning with a period called ".mozilla". That will contain your Firefox profile and you can re-use it on the new installation. .........
Yes, VirtualBox VMS and .mozilla folders are there and have stuff in them.
gold_finger wrote:
goog64 wrote:The only other option I have was mentioned to me by austin.texas in another thread. It sounds good to me. It's called "Method 3" in this thread:
http://forums.linuxmint.com/viewtopic.php?f=46&t=168017 What do you think of that?
I think that's what is referred to as a "dirty" install -- where you install over the current system but without fully erasing what's already there. I've never done that but would imagine that it increases the chances for problems arising from possible conflicts between old and new files. I'd probably only do that as a last resort if I had no way to make backup copies of my data. You're not in that situation and have already made your copies, so no real need to take a chance like that. Clean install is the best way to go.
Will the "dirty" install save the changes that I made last year to get the touchpad and volume working? I think some of the changes I made are to this file:
/usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/50-synaptics.conf
(I'd prefer not to go through that again if I don't have to.)

If I do a clean install - how do I actually get all my files back - do I just delete the Home folder in the new install and then copy and paste the Home folder that I just backed up? Is that all? Will my system just start working then like it is now?
Last edited by goog64 on Sun Aug 17, 2014 10:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

goog64
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by goog64 »

WharfRat wrote:goog64,
......The one thing you might want to do first is use the backup tool (mintbackup) to backup your software selections. It will create a list that you can later use to reinstall the applications with mintbackup restore option.
......
Thanks WharfRat. I've done that software selections backup - it was the only part of Mint Backup that worked
WharfRat wrote: You will only have to replace mount /dev/???? /mnt/target with the actual device assignment of your external drive e.g. /dev/sdb1.
.........
How do I find out what the "actual device assigment" is for my external drive?
WharfRat wrote:......... Also if it isn't formated ext3 or ext4 then format it with

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sudo mkfs.ext3 /dev/???
again using the correct device.
How do I find out if it isn't formatted ext3 or ext4?

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WharfRat
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by WharfRat »

Plug the drive in and in the terminal paste back

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sudo blkid
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goog64
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by goog64 »

Thanks WharfRat. I am replying from my Mint 17 "live" DVD. Here is the result of blkid:

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mint@mint ~ $ sudo blkid
/dev/loop0: TYPE="squashfs" 
/dev/sda1: UUID="707e3c19-e36c-4e22-a359-77ede28c9eec" TYPE="ext4" 
/dev/sda5: UUID="c4b7c7bb-a8ae-4bf4-8564-4292df174a66" TYPE="swap" 
/dev/sr0: LABEL="Linux Mint 17 Cinnamon 64-bit" TYPE="iso9660" 
/dev/sdb1: UUID="40c3c8c2-d317-4aea-ab13-a6553ab82a27" TYPE="ext4" 
/dev/sdb5: UUID="19740119-3dbb-4cce-850f-894efa3246d6" TYPE="swap" 
Which one is the external hard drive?

goog64
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by goog64 »

I'd like to ask this again in case it got lost amongst all the posts:
If I do a clean install - how do I actually get all my files back - do I just delete the Home folder in the new install and then copy and paste the Home folder that I just backed up? Is that all? Will my system just start working then like it is now?

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WharfRat
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by WharfRat »

This is the external drive /dev/sdb1: UUID="40c3c8c2-d317-4aea-ab13-a6553ab82a27" TYPE="ext4" so it's clearly ext4, but there are probably files on it since you have a swap partition on that disk too.

In this case it would be best to format it, but it needs to be unmounted first

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sudo umount -l /dev/sdb1

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sudo mkfs.ext4 /dev/sdb1
The previous instructions I provided were to be run from your installed system, not the live media so before backing up just boot normally to your installed system.

To get your /home stuff restored you'll use rsync again just for the /home folder. You can do a simulation first to make sure things look OK before actually restoring anything. Also the -u option will be set so newer files won't be overwritten.

If you made changes to files in /etc for applications they can also be found with rsync.

For now boot back to your installed system to do the backup then double-check it just to ensure everything looks OK.
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by Reorx »

goog64 wrote:
Reorx wrote:On the basis of what you have written in your first post in this thread - Doing a destructive upgrade (overwriting your current installation) might be something you want to avoid completely. As an alternative, I might suggest >>>
...........
2) If the system is a laptop, I suggest getting another "economical" laptop..............

Good luck... :mrgreen:
Hi Reorx,
That's what I'm trying to find out i.e. whether it "might be" something to avoid or "is" something to avoid.
OK, I'll be less diplomatic/subtle - it IS something to be avoided if you value your time or digital stockpile. Destructive upgrade is working without a net in the sense that if you trash something about your virtual box setup, you can not recover other than restoring an image and starting from scratch... that is IFF your image is "good" (i.e.restorable). The only way to know if your image is restorable is to actually restore it... of course if you were experienced in using imaging software in this fashion, you could be confident on the restorability issue... but you're not experienced and there is no easy way to get experience... The data isn't the problem - that is a simple copy operation... the problem is that you do not have a Win disk to recreate your VB/VM in the event that the port over does not go according to plan... the processes being described in this thread are just a bit complex for a neophyte to accomplish successfully on the first try... there are many opportunities for errors even if only minor... any error could rapidly deteriorate into an unretrievable disaster. If you have a good, restorable image, even a disaster can be quickly recovered from and all you have lost is your time/effort. Do you have a good restorable image? I'm not completely sure and I don't think you are either - so this all boils down to gambling... do you really want to gamble with your data? You can if you like but there is no shortage of threads here that are authored by users who have lost data and hope to recover it... some succeed but most don't... Ultimately, it's your call but I occasionally teach students at the graduate level that deal with important issues and it seems as though they are always in a hurry... I have told them on more than one occasion that it seems as though there is never enough time (resources?) to "do it right" the first time but there is always enough time (resources) to do it over again or to wish that you could (sometimes you don't get a second chance)...
goog64 wrote:Thanks, but I can't afford another laptop
Sorry that $250 is over the budget for this project... You could buy a nice laptop HD and enclosure and assemble it yourself for a tad under $100. You could install the new OS on the External USB HD and work out the kinks... then port over your stuff from you current installation and when everything is working swap HDs and you should have a working system with Mint 17 and a very useful ext USB HD for future use as you see fit... You could even save a few $ and do without the enclosure although then you would have to swap HDs whenever you wanted to boot the "other" system (I wouldn't recommend this though)...

An even cheaper alternative is to boot the live Mint 17 medium and use Gparted to free up some HD space for the Mint 17 installation... dual boot until you have the Mint 17 system settled in and then just run with it... total cost - $0

In case you are interested in testing the restorability of your image - all you need is an empty HD at least as big as the one in your laptop... put the blank disk in the laptop and restore the image to it... Then reboot the system and test it... if everything works perfectly - you have succeeded... in which case you can use either HD to install the new system and at least you will have a safety net if the new installation doesn't work out...

Well that's it for my ideas - YMMV... I wish you luck... :mrgreen:
Full time Linux Mint user since 2011 - Currently running LM19 Cinnamon.

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alwayslearning102
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Re: Please please help me backup so I can switch to Mint 17

Post by alwayslearning102 »

I have 4linux builds in my computer:3 linux mints and a fedora
I copied the /home,/etc,/opt,/usr,and /var directories from my existing os into the new ones them everything I found in the old one was there in the new one! Almost all of the apps were working, I had to restore few of them from deb files.
Hope it works!!!

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