[SOLVED] Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

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Kobalt
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[SOLVED] Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Kobalt »

Hi everyone,

after Timeshift screwed my system up (obiously known bug; filled memory 100%) I managed to delete one of three snapshots via command line (couldn't log-in anymore, bc. of Login loop issue related to full disk space on root partition). Two of the snapshots (taking up around 50% disk space) don't appear in Timeshift (command line, "timeshift --list", and GUI). They exist in /timeshift/snapshots/ though (and still take up around 50 % of my disk space).

Research in the internet suggest just to delete these two snapshot folders. I'm not sure about that, esp. about potentially remaining artefacts on the system. Any hints on how to delete them correctly and completely?

Thanks in advance.
Kobalt
Last edited by Kobalt on Sun May 24, 2020 8:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by pbear »

FYI, Timeshift only fills a partition if configured incorrectly. That someone filed their error as a bug doesn't change that. Also, you can't tell how much space a particular snapshot takes with File Manager, as it counts the hard-linked files as actually present in the snapshot folder.

What you should do is delete all the snapshots and start over. This time, save snapshots some place other than root and stick with defaults for filters.

ETA: I see now that you've already fixed the problem and wrote up how as a "tutorial." Would be nice if you marked this thread [Solved}, so folks don't waste their time reading something which is now moot. It's even a Forum rule (see #9).

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Kobalt »

First off, thanks a lot for your reply.

Anyway, I will reply here and in the tutorial thread separately, because I have different issues or rather lack of understand of your replies. This may help other unexperienced users of Mint as well, I hope. Of course, if I get a completely, I will change the thread title to SOLVED, but atm. it is not for me at least.
What you should do is delete all the snapshots ...
My problem is, that the snapshots which happen to be in the snapshot folder are not displayed in Timeshift (GUI and command line version). Should I delete all of them manually now (via file browser)? Is that appropriate? Is it that what you mean?
... and start over. This time, save snapshots some place other than root and stick with defaults for filters.
This advice I address in the other thread.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by pbear »

The problem with posting what you did in the "tutorial" is that this thread is now incomprehensible. You should have posted all that here. By the way, we don't make tutorials out of every solved thread. And if the problem hasn't been solved, what the heck are you doing posting it as a tutorial?

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by zcot »

Kobalt wrote:
Thu Apr 30, 2020 12:24 pm


delete these two snapshot folders. I'm not sure about that, esp. about potentially remaining artefacts on the system. Any hints on how to delete them correctly and completely?
Bummer. Glad you worked it out though!

I guess when you mention this "obiously known bug" it makes me realize wow! there are 1000's of packages that could potentially do the same thing by writing a file that ends up resulting in 100% partition usage. That doesn't seem good! And maybe the number is even 10,000's of packages? -the ubuntu package base is maybe 70 or 80 thousand packages available, and so many of them have the possibility to write to a file. Wholly shLtb0x!!

One program might only write 5 more bytes to a config file for example, but if that results in 100% partition amount then that's a bad result!

Although clearly Timeshift is going to try to a write a file that's most likely more than 10GB, at least on these Mint systems, so why would the guy try to actually do that bad math?!

I wonder what that teejee developer guy is doing with this? Doesn't he realize you can not write a 10GB file onto a partition that only has, say 863KiB left on it?!?! Well, at least it's a good thing the Linux system doesn't allow him to complete trying and truncates the file at the max size, so then at least the system will not crash out immediately and we will have the opportunity to possibly fix the problem.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by all41 »

I wonder what that teejee developer guy is doing with this?
Me too. It's an idea with good implementation--just needs user prompts regarding storage space
and location though. +1 for teejee imho
libera ab tyrannis

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by erikjan »

Dear Kobalt,

at the introduction of Timshift I got the same problem. Since then I remove Timeshift at every new installation. I can understand that such a program is useful for Windows. For Linux Mint it is quite superfluous. Just make a backup on an external hard drives regularly of your data. The system itself has been rocksolid all the years since I removed Windows. And if something should impair your system, just install it again. As a precaution always instal your home directory on another partition. If Microsoft had decided to have Windows always installed on two partitions, one for the system and one for the data, a lot of misery would have been avoided tot the users!

Greetings.

Erik

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Pjotr »

My 2 cents: both the official recommendation for Timeshift usage and the defaults when you accept the proposals of its wizard, are all wrong. Because they prompt you to make snapshots far too often, which can result in massive disk space consumption. Especially when combined with frequently updating Flatpaks.

Another recipe for disaster is when people have a separate home partition and a small root partition, whilst allowing the snapshots to be put on that tiny root partition.

My recommendation: just two snapshots. If automated: just one monthly snapshot, with a retention of two. Nobody ever needs more than two snapshots in order to restore a working system. Restoring a month old snapshot is no problem, because updating a restored system is peanuts.

Timeshift is a great tool. It's just that it's implemented badly by default.
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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by deepakdeshp »

I don't use TS but for taking backup on external drive I use Clonezilla, a worthy tool. I have a single partition for Mint.
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Koning Mint »

I refuse to use TimeShift. Mint is not winwoes. :!:

My documents are stored on a seperate drive, and on a cloudstorage.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Moem »

deepakdeshp wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 6:04 am
I don't use TS but for taking backup on external drive I use Clonezilla, a worthy tool.
Timeshift is not a backup tool. It's a system snapshot tool, which is a very different thing.
Timeshift is useful, but it really needs some better documentation and a more 'userproof' interface.
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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: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by deepakdeshp »

Moem wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 6:33 am
deepakdeshp wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 6:04 am
I don't use TS but for taking backup on external drive I use Clonezilla, a worthy tool.
Timeshift is not a backup tool. It's a system snapshot tool, which is a very different thing.
Timeshift is useful, but it really needs some better documentation and a more 'userproof' interface.
CZ os backup and a snapshot tool so as to say. When I messed up Mint a couple of times , I was ab;e to go back to the time of my CZ backup
If I have helped you solve a problem, please add [SOLVED] to your first post title, it helps other users looking for help, and keeps the forum clean.
Regards,
Deepak

I am using Mint 19.3 Cinnamon 64 bit with AMD A8/7410 processor . Memory 8GB

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by trytip »

Koning Mint wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 6:09 am
I refuse to use TimeShift. Mint is not winwoes. :!:
My documents are stored on a seperate drive, and on a cloudstorage.
what happens when the cloud is down? :D timeshift is by no means and in no way perfect, but i'm here now and my system gets restored quite frequently when i get the urge to push the limits

it's your choice to do whatever you like, but i do not understand why you believe only windows users should have the ability to restore their workstations.

the same mentality in arch elitists when i would mention on their forums why not just restore it with timeshift and response would be something like this only not so eloquently put "we don't need that stinking mint application, this is arch and we spend a weeks troubleshooting and breaking things instead of timeshift back in a few minutes"

i'm sure more arch users got wise to timeshift, but when it began a few years ago it was looked upon as an application made for dumb ubuntu users
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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by pbear »

Sigh, for the umpteenth time, the number of snapshots is trivial. Timeshift uses hard links, so duplicate files don't have to be copied again. It's the whole point of a snapshot-based sync/backup system. For example, here is a comparison of two vs. six snapshots:

Image

Image

Notice how much more space three times as many snapshots takes. There's a difference between intuition and data. This is data. For context, it's a virtual machine of Mate 19.3. Basic installation, not many apps added but fully updated. Total size of the virtual hard drive is 40 GB.

Timeshift works fine. One just has to take a little time to RTFM. And do a little research, if the manual wasn't enough, Pretty much the same as the rest of Linux. Timeshift isn't brain-dead simple, but it's not rocket surgery either.

Koning Mint

Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Koning Mint »

trytip wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 9:25 am
Koning Mint wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 6:09 am
I refuse to use TimeShift. Mint is not winwoes. :!:
My documents are stored on a seperate drive, and on a cloudstorage.
what happens when the cloud is down? :D timeshift is by no means and in no way perfect, but i'm here now and my system gets restored quite frequently when i get the urge to push the limits.
Allright. Cool. Me have never used restorepoints on winwoes. I am bright and clever enough to know what i am doing.

off topic. i have looked to your avatar. Thanks. Specially for you: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bmjROkH6xtE.
Me have listednd this track now for more than 147 times.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by pbear »

Following up, I decided to see what's happening with Timeshift on my main system. I've reported some variation of these figures in the past, but this is where things stand in May 2020:
My root partition has 20 GB in files (8 GB of which is a swap file). My home partition has 1.7 GB (data files are separate); home is covered by my snapshots, as I include hidden folders to capture config files.

Timeshift space-used (separate partition) for four weekly + five daily snapshots is 21.26 GB. Backing out the swap file (which is filtered) but adding home (included by choice), system is 13.7 GB.

So, snapshots are 155% of system. Based on the VM demo, I could drop the overhead by about 1 GB by paring back to five snapshots total (any combination of weekly and daily), but that would only bring snapshots down to 148% of system. No thanks.
By the way, as an exercise, I have a USB flash drive with eight snapshots going back to August of last year. No notion of restoring those, of course, just curious what happens if one accumulates snapshots over a long period of time. Space used = 37.5 GB, 274% of system. Moral of the story: How far back your snapshots go, and hence the number of since-replaced packages still in snapshot, is much more important than number of snapshots.

All space-used values as reported by GParted. Timeshift itself, File Manager, and df-h report similar orders of magnitude
and relative size, but differ from each other as to specific amounts. Don't know why.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by Pjotr »

pbear wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 10:30 am
the number of snapshots is trivial.
Not when you've got some frequently updating Flatpaks installed. :wink:
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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by zcot »

trytip wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 9:25 am
an application made for dumb ubuntu users
but we know that's not true because it is destroying systems.

so it's a too advanced, complex, and behind the scenes convoluted destroyer. It's actually a system destruction tool.

I should be able to click the button and not do anything more, and if the system is broken I should be able to come back from it with 1 click. -that's how it is on Windows.
pbear wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 10:30 am
Timeshift works fine. One just has to take a little time to RTFM. And do a little research, if the manual wasn't enough, Pretty much the same as the rest of Linux. Timeshift isn't brain-dead simple, but it's not rocket surgery either.
Nope, not going to read more than once sentence. If you give me anything more than a popup info, -hell I don't even read that honestly. You have to tell me exactly what do to and I will hear you, -that's all. I'm definitely not going to read how something works, or is supposed to work, or how I'm supposed to operate with the thing, I know how it works, it's a backup tool and I click it and it does the thing. I'm not going to think about the possibilities of unforeseen consequences. You're just making fun because you are willing to read the friendly manual and perceive of what it might do, might be doing, how it does it, and stuff.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by PhilippeH »

Sort of beginner here, but I think it should be stressed that Timeshift snapshots would be better, if possible, if it is used on another drive ;) This is what I do, and it has saved my life a couple of times, including a SSD failure. Combined with a file backup tool, Timeshift is invaluable.

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Re: Timeshift screwed up system: Snapshots in Timeshift are hidden now?

Post by pbear »

Pjotr wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 12:02 pm
pbear wrote:
Sat May 02, 2020 10:30 am
the number of snapshots is trivial.
Not when you've got some frequently updating Flatpaks installed. :wink:
That's FUD. At most, a footnote and easily handled. Nor have I noticed this problem reported on the Forum, much less often.

Whereas we see lots of folks who get into trouble and can't get out because they didn't set up Timeshift.

By the way, nothing wrong with manual snapshots, if one has the discipline to do them regularly. Most people don't.

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