SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by JoeFootball » Thu Feb 08, 2018 2:41 pm

AZgl1500 wrote:I am now trying to make the USB flash Drive a bootable Clonezilla ... the TAR file unpacked into the Clonezilla partition okay, but I don't think that it created a bootable FlashDrive. I was never asked, or shown how to create the MBR.
For bootable Clonezilla USB drive I download the Clonezilla Live ISO and install it on the drive with Unetbootin. I've been successfully using this as my primary full-system backup method for years.

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Re: SystemBack - what does it save?

Post by Pierre » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:25 pm

it won't have saved it's file to that USB Seagate HDD,
but most likely into your /home directory,, & on the same level as your /home ( user-name )
- it placed an 6,1Gb folder at that level, with lots of system folders within that.
it's folder is called 'systemback' of course.
8)
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Re: SystemBack - what does it save?

Post by AZgl1500 » Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:35 pm

Pierre wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:25 pm
it won't have saved it's file to that USB Seagate HDD,
but most likely into your /home directory,,& on the same level as your /home ( user-name )
- it placed an 6,1Gb folder at that level, with lots of system folders within that.
it's folder is called 'systemback' of course.
8)
I doubled checked, and there is a folder in /home but nothing in it.

So, I redirected SystemBack to store it in the /home directory ( the default when I first saw it come up )
and clicked 'Create' once again.

This time, it indeed did put a full duplicate of the system files into that folder.

So, as a repeat of my question 1 post back, it appears that the USB drive will have to have a Linux formatted partition. I am good with that, I just want to know what type of format is preferable to format it with?

I much prefer to put all of my Backups onto a separate HDD, having the backups on the same HDD as I am using is pointless if the HDD crashes hard, and can't be recovered.

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Re: SystemBack - what does it save?

Post by austin.texas » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:08 am

AZgl1500 wrote:
Thu Feb 08, 2018 11:35 pm
So, as a repeat of my question 1 post back, it appears that the USB drive will have to have a Linux formatted partition. I am good with that, I just want to know what type of format is preferable to format it with?
I prefer to format a USB drive to ext2 - because the lack of journeling means less wear on the drive.
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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by Pierre » Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:05 am

it would pay to not leave it as NTFS,, but rather format it to ext2 or ext 3 instead.
- the default would be ext 4, and there are reasons as to using that format, too.
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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by AZgl1500 » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:18 pm

Pierre wrote:
Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:05 am
it would pay to not leave it as NTFS,, but rather format it to ext2 or ext 3 instead.
- the default would be ext 4, and there are reasons as to using that format, too.
But you don't explain the "reasons"

Okay, I understand that it is better to use one of the three 'ext' modes, but please, what are the benefits of each?

Right now, to me, those three formats are just mnemonics...

I fully understand the differences, and the whys of FAT16 versus FAT32, and NTFS:
that is the world I came from.

What I am trying to understand, as relates to an external USB drive, which is the more efficient format to use?
austin.texas » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:08 pm
I prefer to format a USB drive to ext2 - because the lack of journeling means less wear on the drive.
I take it that Journeling requires more cycling of the drive heads?

I am reading this link http://www.learnitguide.net/2016/08/dif ... -ext4.html
which shows a neat chart and refers to "Journeling" but does not explain how that effects USB drive performance or safety ( in case of improper shutdown, or simply jerking the USB plug out w/o unmounting it first )
I have trained myself Long Ago to be sure and unmount an external drive, that is a hang over from Windows systems. It can lead to corruption of the external drives file structure.


This link https://www.tecmint.com/what-is-ext2-ex ... e-systems/
Intimates that ext3 is "safer" then ext2 because: journaling feature, which is to improve reliability and eliminates need to check file system after unclean shutdown.


This link https://adarsh5388.wordpress.com/2013/1 ... -in-linux/
Seems to intimate that ext4 is the better format, and that ext4 also allows the option to turn OFF, the journaling feature.


This link http://en.community.dell.com/techcenter ... /wiki/2290
Does a better job of explaining things a bit more, but I need to make this USB drive simply a backup "Write Once" keep it safe type vault. It will not be used as a Data mine for constant daily use.

This last link leaves with the statement: The results are very encouraging as ext4 is considerably faster than ext3 and has the reliability advantage over ext2. As ext4 evolves, its performance characteristics may change, however once the file system becomes supported we expect it to be a very good choice to be used under Linux.

I am new to Linux, but I am trying to eliminate some mistakes now, to make life easier tomorrow.

Is it better to go with ext4 than the other formats, and if so, should journaling be ON, or OFF and why?
And if I go to ext4, do I want to try and force a certain block size, or just leave things to the defaults?



Sorry to be such a pest, but I am desperately trying to grasp the file systems and their nuances... and some article writers leave a lot to "inference" and not explicit description. a lot of this comes about because of language cultures and translation difficulties.

I only know/understand American English, to me British English is a foreign language :lol:

I am a techno geek and want to understand "the why" of things, but this Linux stuff is all new to me. There is one hell of a lot of stuff to learn here.
Last edited by AZgl1500 on Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by austin.texas » Fri Feb 09, 2018 12:33 pm

You can go with ext2, as I do, to avoid the extra writes that journaling does - so that your flash drive has a longer life span.
Or you can chose the extra safety of ext4, where journaling makes the filesystem more stable, but wears out the flash drive faster.
It is like the choice of riding a motorcycle with a helmet or with no helmet... different strokes for different folks.
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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by AZgl1500 » Sat Feb 10, 2018 9:38 pm

Funny thing happened on the way to the Forum.....

The 32 gB Flash Drive that I set up with a FAT32, 512 mB partition, and also a 29+ gB NTFS partition works, but the results are NOT what I expected at all.

I followed the instructions for making a Hirens USB flash drive....

When it was all over and done with, there is only one (1) partition now, but get this:

All of the previous Folders and DATA inside those folders is still on the Flash Drive, it is just in the one single partition now...

I was in hopes that the Hirens method would accept the 512 mB, FAT32 partition as the 'root' and leave the NTFS partition alone... nope, didn't happen.

Glad I used the big Desktop PC to make that thing on, it took all night for it for reformat that 32 gB Flash Drive, and still keep everything that it found on it....

All of that is explicitly contrary to the instructions that was given:
ie, "All data on this drive will be lost"

Weird World out there, but it works, booted right up, just like it should...

and I still have 29+ gB of space to store things on...

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Re: TimeShift - what does it save?

Post by AZgl1500 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:27 am

To close up my journey through learning about the Ext FileSystem, I thought I would post up my efforts for another Newbie who is scared ShitLess about making a horrible mistake. I have begged and pleaded for an in-depth help, and I got a lot of pointers to "head into this direction", but not complete solid advice as "to the why?"

So, to future Newbies, here is how I decided to go with Ext4.

___________________________________________________________________

What Format Should I use to format Unallocated Space?


by AZgl1500
I have been doing a lot of reading over the last few days, and the result is that I have decided to go with the Ext4 file system..... below are my notes from all of my reading if you care to look at them. This USB HDD is going to be used solely for backups, it will not be attached full time for instant data use.

I include the links to where I glombed onto the notes parcels, so that I can go back tomorrow, or next year, and try to uncover "Why the Hell did I do this? " :lol:

So, FWIW, here are my notes:
_______________________________________________

by austin.texas » Thu Feb 08, 2018 10:08 pm
I prefer to format a USB drive to ext2 - because the lack of journeling means less wear on the drive.
________________________________________

Due to the low amount of fragmentation on most EXT filesystems, it is not necessary to defragment. In any event, there is no safe defragmentation tool for EXT filesystems.
______________________________________


The History of the Ext File System: 25 May 2017 David Both

.............. This author's treatise is the most recent I can find that describes the Files Systems, and it covers the more recent versions of Ext4 which now makes me think that Ext4 is how I am going to format my USB drive...........


https://opensource.com/article/17/5/int ... filesystem

This author says: Without a doubt, the EXT4 file-system should be used for most Linux systems unless there is a compelling reason to use another file-system.
__________________________________________________


EXT3

The EXT3 file-system had the singular objective of overcoming the massive amounts of time that the fsck program required to fully recover a disk structure damaged by an improper shutdown that occurred during a file-update operation. The only addition to the EXT file-system was the journal, which records in advance the changes that will be performed to the file-system. The rest of the disk structure is the same as it was in EXT2.

The journaling function reduces the time required to check the hard drive for inconsistencies after a failure from hours (or even days) to mere minutes, at the most. I have had many issues over the years that have crashed my systems. The details could fill another article, but suffice it to say that most were self-inflicted, like kicking out a power plug. Fortunately, the EXT journaling file-systems have reduced that bootup recovery time to two or three minutes. In addition, I have never had a problem with lost data since I started using EXT3 with journaling.

An existing EXT2 file-system can be upgraded to EXT3 with the addition of a journal using the following command.

tune2fs -j /dev/sda1

Where /dev/sda1 is the drive and partition identifier. Be sure to change the file type specifier in /etc/fstab and remount the partition or reboot the system to have the change take effect.

_____________________________________________________

http://www.pointsoftware.ch/en/3-journa ... ver-crash/

Per the Blog Author:
My conclusion after reading the stuff below, is that I do NOT want to use Ext4, it is NOT as safe as Ext3 and it is 50% slower in performance because of Journaling... but this was reading a 5 year old Blog when Ext4 did not have the Safety Features in it that the current version does. So, I am going with Ext4. me, AZgl1500...

http://www.pointsoftware.ch/en/4-ext4-v ... on-is-bad/

4.1 Main differences

Ext3 was available since 2001 with Linux Kernel 2.4.15 and extended ext2 with journalling to avoid file-system corruption after a crash.

4.3 Ext4: delayed allocation will destroy your data

The data changes may suffer a loss of 30-150 seconds and in the majority of cases all changed files in this window will be completely wiped with zero bytes! The atomicity of file changes is not working anymore with the rename-idiom.

4.5 The solution

In conclusion, ext4 should be mounted with ‘-o nodelalloc’ to make it safe against a server crash and ext3 should use ‘-o barrier=1′ (barriers are disabled by default on ext3).


‘data=journal’: the safest and slowest mode, here metadata and data are written to the journal, it guarantees the consistency of the file-system and of the file with a 50% write performance drop; this mode work like an ACID database

per this above Author:
After reading some internet reviews, the general conclusion is that the ext4 file-system brings some performance improvements over ext3 but it has also dangerous default options. This was from a 7 year old Blog and before Ext4 had recent Safety Features added to it.


===================================================

So, to put a close to it, here is what I finally did:


This link finally gave me an overview of what to do and expect to see... " A picture is worth a thousand words " I have heard... and for me, it is literally true.

https://askubuntu.com/questions/529932/ ... -in-ubuntu

Mouse over the unallocated partition, Right Click and choose "New".
You must click on "Add" or nothing happens.

Image


You are not done yet, you have to Apply the Changes ( learned that the hard way when nothing worked like it should ) Click on Edit / Apply

Image


and now you should see this and breathe a sigh of relief.

Image


And finally, to wrap it all up, here is how my new 6 TB USB HDD looks now.
Half of it is reserved for Windows: I have 5 of those things in the house.

And half of it is now Ext4 for all of my future Linux applications backups.


Image


This thread is now closed, and many thanks to all the contributors who have helped me in this journey.
Last edited by AZgl1500 on Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:51 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

Post by Marziano » Sun Feb 11, 2018 11:46 am

Interesting and informative read. Thanks for sharing!
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Re: SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

Post by AZgl1500 » Sun Feb 11, 2018 12:51 pm

Just wanted to add one more post referencing my desire to be able to store backups onto the USB drive, and not on the System drive....

This for being able to reinstall Linux in case of a crash and then be able to restore everything back like it was, then import the personal data files from the USB drive....

This would be analogous to restoring from an Image cloned file.... which I will do anyway...
but it is faster by quite a bit.

SystemBack will use the USB HDD if you choose the proper location on it to save the backup file to.

Image


and once you have done that, you can point it to that location and it will show you the Restore Points that were saved to that location.


Image


I found out quickly that if you do not have it pointed to a Linux usable location, it will go through all the motions of Creating the Restore Point, but it will not save the file anywhere. This took a bit of searching to prove, but when I finally got it right, the above images prove that it can be done.

If you don't have it pointed to the proper location on the USB HDD, the Restore from screen will be empty.... go back and select a different location and then they will show up.

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Re: SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

Post by BG405 » Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:52 pm

Just to add that the reference to using ext2 on USB drives is specific to flash drives. As you have a standard hard disk attached via USB, the ext4 choice is the best one.

Thanks for posting your findings!
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Re: SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

Post by AZgl1500 » Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:52 pm

BG405 wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:52 pm
Just to add that the reference to using ext2 on USB drives is specific to flash drives. As you have a standard hard disk attached via USB, the ext4 choice is the best one.

Thanks for posting your findings!
Thank you for updating this thread as to the difference:

Now I will be more careful in the treatment of a Flash Drive....

Looked at a 64 gB flash drive that I had used to make a USB ISO for Mint 17.3
found 4 partitions on it, two very tiny, relegated to booting up Linux Live.

there are 2 unallocted partitions that make up 98% of the drive capacity.
Tried to get Gparted to format them so it could be used to transfer stuff, but it told me that it would have to remove the "1st parittion" before doing that.... that scared me off, as the flash drive probably would not boot after that was done.

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Re: SOLVED - TimeShift - what does it save? - With Instructions to a Newbie as to how to do it in the last post...

Post by AZgl1500 » Sun Feb 18, 2018 6:51 pm

For the paranoid, just so one thread has it all.

I read in one of the other threads about Redo, a very neat utility, that is ultra simple to put onto a CD or Flash drive, and then use it to do a lot of things... Like a Metal to Metal image of your HDD.

Which I just did, stored it on the ExtUSB HDD. A process that took 1 hr, 58 minutes.
Hope it is never needed, but if worst came to worst, I could put this laptop back together again in 2 hrs, while I go out to dinner. That is not a bad thing to have in your Insurance Policy.

http://redobackup.org/download.php


I really like the simplistic overview that it presents to the user. I am extremely familiar with Macrium Reflect, but if you are not careful with MR, you will not get what you want... Redo is so simple, my grandkids can do it with their eyes closed. :lol:


some pix

Menu.jpg

OverView-800.jpg

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