Deprecated Behaviour

The inane, sometimes insane, ramblings from the mind of Brenton Alker.

Automated Incremental Backups With Rsync

When I installed my software RAID array, I was a little unsure of stability, mainly because I’ve never configured RAID before, not because the software is unstable. So as a precaution, I decided to create a backup scheme (which I should have had anyway).

Using some tools found on almost every Linux system, “rsync” and “cp”, I wrote a script, to create incremental backups of my /home directory.

My code looks like this:

/usr/local/sbin/ `



Delete the oldest backup

if [ -d ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.${BACKUPS} ] then

    rm -rf ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.${BACKUPS}

fi SRC=0 for i in seq ${BACKUPS} -1 2 do

    let SRC=$i-1
    if [ -d ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.${SRC} ]
            mv ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.${SRC} ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.${i}

done if [ -d ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.0 ] then

    cp -al ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.0 ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.1

fi rsync -a —update —delete ${SRC_DIR}/ ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.0 touch ${BACKUP_DIR}${SRC_DIR}.0


It incrementally backs up the entire /home directory to /backup, by placing it in my crontab:

@daily /usr/local/sbin/ “` I can, without intervention, maintain 2 weeks worth of backups.

Since this is basically a single user system, and the backups are only meant to protect against my stupidity, I haven’t gone to the trouble of making the backups read-only. But this would certainly be an improvement to the system. A couple of solutions are discussed in the article that my script is based on. Mine only backs up to a different directory (which is mounted on a different drive), not to a separate system/location (although, this is a good idea if possible).

As a side note, I haven’t had any trouble with the RAID, but backups are still reassuring.