[SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

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bensatlantic
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[SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by bensatlantic »

I'm looking for a means of backing up my system. Timeshift seems like a popular application for this purpose, but it is not included in software manager. (Mint V17.1 - Cinnamon). I'm sure I could find a ppa for it, but thought I'd ask here if there are other applications or solutions that Mint users prefer or recommend. Maybe unlike compared to many other users, a crash for me would be inconvenient but not devastating - I'd just have to reinstall Mint. Since the OS itself is easily reinstalled from my live cd and all of my important files are stored elsewhere, and all packages available from package manager once I'm set up again, is there any advantage for me with Timeshift?
Last edited by bensatlantic on Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:03 pm, edited 2 times in total.

rumpus
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Re: Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by rumpus »

I installed timeshift even though my records, pictures, and music is backed up on an external hd
because it seems easier to restore from a week ago than to install a new system.

Too many updates to reinstall.....r

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bensatlantic
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Re: Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by bensatlantic »

rumpus wrote:I installed timeshift even though my records, pictures, and music is backed up on an external hd
because it seems easier to restore from a week ago than to install a new system.

Too many updates to reinstall.....r
Good point - I've been happy with the stability of Mint 17.1 but I always update and would have to do that over again. No Timeshift in my Package Manager - can you suggest where to find?

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Jim Hauser
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Re: Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Jim Hauser »

Find something that works backing up and recovering your system and then use it on a regular basis. I use Redo for my striped LVM setups and QT5 FSArchiver for my non striped systems. My backups are done once per week without fail and even more often if needed prior to major software or system changes. I keep copies of all my backups until they are rotated out of the system due to age. (for me it works out to 15 copies on separate drives with the oldest deleted first due to available space.)

Just make sure that you test recovery before making your final decision.

I have yet to fully test Timeshift but it looks like it might come in handy...

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Re: Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by fstjohn »

Keep in mind that Timeshift doesn't back up your home directory, so the backup doesn't include your documents, photos, etc. It backs up your OS, including all updates and settings. It's very similar to Windows system restore. I use Timeshift for the OS and Backintime to backup my Home directory. Both are set to run daily. Both are stored on an external USB disk which is manually mirrored weekly to another external USB disk which is encrypted with Veracrypt. The encrypted volume is not mounted except for the mirroring operation. Hopefully this protects against the possibility of ransomware.

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bensatlantic
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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift PPA

Post by bensatlantic »

Thanks guys. Found a ppa for Timeshift to those who want to try it:

Code: Select all

sudo apt-add-repository -y ppa:teejee2008/ppa
sudo apt update
sudo apt install timeshift
Last edited by bensatlantic on Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:04 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by DAMIEN1307 »

hi fstjohn...happy christmas...you wrote "Timeshift doesn't back up your home directory, so the backup doesn't include your documents, photos, etc."...for some reason my timeshift does under "home" when i hit browse and look at what has been backed up...in timeshift on the tab marked settings did you see the one called "users" and then did you click all four boxes so they are showing green checkmarks?...maybe that is why i have my music, videos, documents photos etc...just wondering...DAMIEN
ORDO AB CHAO

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by fstjohn »

Yes, I believe there is an option to make a full backup but that's not the software's primary purpose. The default is the OS only. The author points this out and recommends that Backintime be used for user files.
Last edited by Pierre on Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:23 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: added URL for Backintime

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Jim Hauser »

I might add that Timeshift is pre-installed on Mint KDE 18.3 and possibly other flavors.

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by fstjohn »

Just like Windows Restore, the idea is to be able to restore the OS to a previous state without disturbing user files. If you backup the user files along with the OS then if you have a problem with the OS and you restore to a previous date (before whatever caused the problem existed) then you also restore your user files to that date, losing any changes you've made. Doing separate backups (both Timeshift and Backintime) solves the problem.

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Moem »

Jim Hauser wrote:I might add that Timeshift is pre-installed on Mint KDE 18.3 and possibly other flavors.
It's present on Cinnamon... this was one of the nicest new perks in Cinnamon 18.3.
Image

If your issue is solved, kindly indicate that by editing the first post in the topic, and adding [SOLVED] to the title. Thanks!

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by DAMIEN1307 »

and that is exactly why i do not use its automatic systems to backup and always do a manual backup once per week to be sure that all is well and backups will not cause any problems if i ever have to use it because i am sure when i do so manually that all is already well and good...if an update borks the system or if i do something stupid, then i know that at least my backup was done properly and the worst case scenario is that i might only be a week out of date...lol...DAMIEN
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Jim Hauser
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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Jim Hauser »

DAMIEN1307 wrote:and that is exactly why i do not use its automatic systems to backup and always do a manual backup once per week to be sure that all is well and backups will not cause any problems if i ever have to use it because i am sure when i do so manually that all is already well and good...if an update borks the system or if i do something stupid, then i know that at least my backup was done properly and the worst case scenario is that i might only be a week out of date...lol...DAMIEN
My reasoning too... I have always questioned doing a backup from within a running system. I use Redo from a separate DVD and QT5 FSArchiver from a separate distro on a different drive. My main reason for having to restore is because I have done something silly to bork the system. It can be difficult if not impossible to restore from within a borked setup. I also do a standard copy of all of my home folder files at least once per week and before a new install.

However, using Timeshift to keep my home folder files in sync just might save a weeks worth of lost work! :-)

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Termy »

For me, Clonezilla is the only true solution for restoring from a backup. Aside from that, I use this little tool I wrote a while ago:

https://github.com/terminalforlife/misc ... r/backmeup

If you use it, be sure to edit it as applicable for your setup. It only backs up $HOME, which is for me desired, as I already use Clonezilla for full, system-wide backups. Specifically, "backmeup" backs up $HOME, with some not-so-important directories excluded (for speed and a lesser backup size), in the directory "/media/$USER/1TB Internal HDD", which for me is one of my other drives which I use for these type of back ups. Clonezilla ones I put elsewhere. Layers like onions, as with security. :)
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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by bensatlantic »

[quote="Termy"]For me, Clonezilla is the only true solution for restoring from a backup. Aside from that, I use this little tool I wrote a while ago:

https://github.com/terminalforlife/misc ... r/backmeup

I'm not a programmer, but think I know enough to run a bash script and try this. What should I enter into line 20?

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Re: [SOLVED]Simple System Backup - Timeshift?

Post by Termy »

Should be easy enough. I updated the script and forgot about that line 20 comment, sorry. I'll do away with that in the next update.

Code: Select all

printf -v LABEL "1TB Internal HDD"
That is the only line you'll want to change, I believe. You'll want to replace what is within the quotes for the label of the partition you wish to back up to. (the location of the tgz archives) As this is more of a personalized script, I haven't made it especially user-friendly or featureful. If you find this script useful, I could overhaul it for more user-friendly-ness.

Anywho, the first line in the above CODE block is what you'll want to edit for the label of the partition you're backing up to. I'm assuming you aren't backing up to the same partition, and for that matter, the same device. :P

EDIT:

Spent a little while tonight working on an overhaul for backmeup. Check out the dev branch if you're interested. Will merge to master when it's done and I'm happy it works okay.
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